Ravens Transcripts: Week 6 vs. Giants (Oct. 12)

Head Coach John Harbaugh

Opening statement:"Great to see everybody here – appreciate you guys being here. We just had a good practice – beautiful day – a good, tough practice in pads and a lot of work with a lot of young guys, which was our focus today. Obviously, [there was focus on] kick-starting the offense, in terms of the direction that we're going in. I thought it was a good day. I'm really pleased with it, and I'm excited. As far as any of the injury stuff, I'm sure you guys saw who was practicing and who is not and all of that. I'm just not going to get into any of that right now. There are various reasons for different guys. You kind of know the injury report anyway from the weekend. You'll get the injury report later. Some of the guys [missing from practice] were for personal [matters]. Some of the guys I gave a day [off]. Some of the guys have things that they can't practice with. That's kind of how it works."

John, I know there's a certain limit on padded practices. When was the last time you did have one during the season? (Jamison Hensley) "We've been practicing every Wednesday just like this. Every Wednesday … You see right now you have some young guys working on technique. When you're in pads – especially with the young guys – you have to take advantage of it. You don't get many of these. The opportunity to develop players – I think you see it every week in football, especially the young guys – and develop the ability to do the things that are necessary to [win] … It's a padded game. It's a contact, collision sport.  You have to take advantage of these days, and I guess my point was we had a good day that way."

When you're changing a scheme, can that be done and noticeable in a week? (Peter Schmuck)"I sure hope so. That's the plan. It's not like we're changing the whole thing; we're running the same offense. The terminology is the same. I'm sure Marty [Mornhinweg] has changed a couple of terms for his play-calling. Sometimes you have some things engrained in as a coach. It's interesting, [because] he was really concerned about that. He had two or three conversations with me about it – this term, that term. It's only five or six things. I'm like, 'Just do it. Just change it. These guys will get it. These guys are young.' It's like little kids. They learn languages quickly, and old people can't do it quite as well. Marty can't learn a new language, but the guys can. (laughter) He changed a couple of things, and the guys picked it up like that, and we're fine."

John, you have known Marty for a while now. How would you describe his personality? (Childs Walker) "I don't have Marty's bio in front of me right now or the front page cover of his autobiography. I would be happy to write it someday. (laughter) I think his style is obvious. It's enthusiastic. He's very direct. He's very straight forward. I do think Marty … I do believe … The things I've always admired about him [are that] he's a very descriptive teacher. He paints a really good picture for the guys. That's a gift. No comparison, because Marc [Trestman] was an excellent teacher as well. That's one of his many pluses."

People I have talked to say he is a guy that just projects confidence. Is that something you've seen? (Childs Walker) "Sure. Have you talked to him? I think when you talk to him, you'll feel the same way. He does. He has a lot of energy. He's been doing this a long time and he's had a lot of success. It's an offense that we're familiar with, because we're in this offense anyway. His version of it is something to be excited about."

How much does it help that he has a relationship with QB Joe Flacco already? (Brent Harris) "That's a major point. Joe and him have been tied at the hip now for two years, really. I think the communication part of it is a real positive."

With Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr., what kind of challenges does he present with his unique style? (Jamison Hensley) "Odell Beckham Jr. is one of the most gifted players in the league. We've all seen the catches he's made. He obviously has a very fiery, competitive personality, which you respect. It's a big challenge. I think we need to know where [No.] 13 is at all times with our defense."

Amateur quarterback gurus have gone through QB Joe Flacco's mechanics. Has he thrown off of his back foot too much or is that just a symptom of the pass rush?* (Jeff Zrebiec)* "I think the easiest thing in the world for any coach is to look at the tape and go, 'This isn't perfect. This isn't right.' I think you look all around the league … I don't care which quarterback you're talking about, you're going to see those things when pressure happens. It's our job to make everything right, as right as we can, in that situation. This is something that we chase every single day. Joe chases perfect mechanics. I do think everybody is responsible for putting the quarterback, especially, in a position to be as good as he can be. That's the whole key to the thing in the end, how good your quarterback plays. I guess what I'm saying is everybody has a big hand in that."

With some of the challenges on the offensive line, are you happy to bring G Vladimir Ducasse back? He is a guy that is very familiar with what you did and was here in the summer.* (Luke Jones)* "It felt like we were really in a good position that he was still there. I have to say, I'm a little surprised he was still available. I thought he had a really good training camp. He knows the system now. He's been with us all during training camp. That's something that's going to help us, and we needed that guard."

Last week, to start the game you guys were the epitome of execution on offense. Why is it so difficult to duplicate that?* (Keith Mills)* "We just didn't duplicate it. We just didn't execute. That's the bottom line. Why? We didn't do it. We have to chase execution and do things the right way. Obviously, we're doing – I think it's pretty clear – were doing everything we can to do it and to find a way to do it. We can go through it play by play and look at every play and look at why from a structure standpoint. If you're looking for something more esoteric than that, I'm not really into that."

When you make a switch like this, are penalties something that you have to be more aware of avoiding? (Cliff Brown) "That's right. That's a great way of saying it. It's probably as simple as you can say it. I told the guys, I think there were nine of them. There were probably four of them in there that just shouldn't have been called. There's no way on four of those that we can say, 'Hey, you can do something differently there.' Jimmy Smith's illegal contact is an example, just off the top of my head. But there are five of them there that should never happen. We line up too deep in the backfield? So, they make four, you have five of your own, and now we have nine. Let's not have those five. We can live with those four. Usually, when you don't have those five, you don't get those four, you get two. It just kind of works out that way, for some reason. We just have to do our part and play smarter, more disciplined, more intelligent football."

Is Marty fully making the game plan this week? Does it happen that quickly?* (Brent Harris)*"Yes. Marty is in charge of the game plan. We have a whole system in place that we have developed over the years in terms of all three phases and how we game-plan. All of the coaches are involved in it. Marty has been a part of that. I would say it has grown through last year with Marc. We really have grown that thing to where … He also has to put his imprint on it. There are some things he changes. There are some meetings he tweaks a little bit, because he's in charge of preparing the offense. You ride with it how he likes to do it."


QB Joe Flacco

On the different energy under new offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg:"I think it is just different personalities, and different ways of going about things. Obviously, if I was in front of the room, it wouldn't be the same as if Marty was in front of the room. If you know Marty, you know what he means. It is really tough to go further than that."

On if he agrees with TE Dennis Pitta's comments about the offense being in a bad place and needing a change:"I'm disappointed. I feel bad that we haven't been who we wanted to be. That is up to John [Harbaugh] to look at those things and make those decisions and lean on people like [general manager and executive vice president] Ozzie [Newsome] and [owner] Steve [Bisciotti] and do what he thinks and they think is best. We definitely need to be better than we are."

On what he liked about working with new offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg while Mornhinweg was the Ravens' quarterbacks coach:"Marty is an exciting guy. He is confident, and he brings a lot of confidence to the room. He is very sure in what he is doing and what we are doing. I think he gets everybody going and gives everybody a good outlook on the game plan."

On his initial reaction when coach Harbaugh informed him that he was letting go of offensive coordinator Marc Trestman:"I don't know. It is kind of tough to describe what your reaction is. The biggest thing is disappointment and the fact that we haven't been where we wanted to be."

On where the biggest change will be under Mornhinweg:"We will probably be a little more confident going forward and be shoring things up – doing what we do best. [We will] try to stretch the field a little bit more and things like that."

On if the demeanor and energy of an offensive coordinator matters:"No. Everybody does it their own way. Everybody has success their own way. You have to be who you are. I'm a lot different than other people, and other people are different than me. You have so many personalities as you go out there and take the field. It is about everybody coming together and acting as one and going out there and being a confident group. You can achieve that in a lot of ways. I don't think Marty's personality defines who he is. It is just a part of who he is. That is all."

On if a change this big this early in the season catches the team's attention: "Yes. We haven't paid too much attention to it, to be honest with you. Not too much has been said about it. But yes, guys know. Just like I said, I was disappointed that we have not been who we want to be. It creates a sense of urgency. I think everybody feels that already, but it probably adds to it."

On if it is easy to say the team will throw deep more because of Mornhinweg's history of taking shots downfield:"It is just up to him as a play-caller and getting into the rhythm of the game and feeling when you do those things. Obviously, you aren't just picking things off the call sheet and calling them. There is a rhythm to it, and there is a reason for it. That is the biggest thing."

On if it is meaningful to him that Mornhinweg has had relationships with lots of successful quarterbacks: "I don't think about that too much. I think if you know Marty and you know his football background, you can see why he has good relationships with those guys. It is just the type of person he is and the type of football coach he is."

On if he already notices the difference comparing Mornhinweg and Marc Trestman as the offensive coordinator: "There are little things. Today you are going out there and feeling your way through a couple of new things that we have – things that Marty, as a coordinator, has to have and has to have to feel comfortable with calling the plays and all of that stuff. The couple little tweaks here are feeling our way through. You can feel a little bit of a difference because of that stuff."

On how much accountability he has to take when coach Harbaugh feels like he needs to make a change of the offensive coordinator: "All of it. I'm the guy. If there is a guy to look at, it is the quarterback. That is where a lot of that comes from."

On if he has had a chance to talk to Marc Trestman: "Yes. I talked to Marc yesterday."

On if it was a difficult conversation to have with Trestman:"Of course it was. Me and Marc had a good relationship, and I think there is a lot of respect there. As tough as it was, it was a conversation with a guy that I have been here with for two years, so it shouldn't be that bad."

On how difficult it is to have a coordinator change in the middle of the season and if you can expect to have immediate success in the week following:"I think so. I think you can expect to. There are so many different things that go into it. It is not like you can change the world overnight. You have to go out there, and we just have to do what we are doing better. [We have to] find a better rhythm, take advantage of some more opportunities. Yes, I think we can expect to go out there and play well and have success."

On how he found out about the news of the Ravens parting ways with Trestman and if it surprised him:"I actually was out with the family, and I had a couple of missed texts, and I had a missed call from John [Harbaugh]. I saw the texts first, and I called John back when I got the chance to. I think you are honestly always surprised when that stuff happens, but there was definitely a little bit of a feeling going around."

On how beneficial it is that he has worked with Mornhinweg closely over the past two years: "That is the only way you can do it. It is not like you can bring someone from the outside in the middle of the year that doesn't have any knowledge of what we have been doing. It definitely is going to help."

TE Dennis Pitta

On how much it grabs his attention when a coordinator is replaced at this point in the season:"What is this, the fifth coordinator in five years, I think? It certainly gets our attention, that's for sure. It's always tough to see somebody let go like that. Marc Trestman is a great guy, a great coach. It was difficult to see him go, but I think it was something that this offense needed. We were in kind of a bad place. It didn't seem like we were getting out of it. Hopefully, this will spark us. Marty [Mornhinweg] is a great coach, and we have a lot of faith in him. He brings an energy and an excitement to our offense that we needed. Hopefully, we'll be able to put it together and play much better going forward."

On his impressions of offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg: "Marty is a really easy guy to get along with. He is someone that every player in this building respects. He has a ton of experience. He has been a lot of places and seen a lot of things, so he brings a wealth of knowledge and experience. We have a ton of faith in him, like I mentioned. I think, as far as offensive players, I think we're all excited about Marty taking over."

On the biggest changes in the offense since the coordinator switch: "Time will tell. We're still only three days into this thing. Hopefully, we'll be able to push the ball down the field a little bit more, [and] we'll be able to be balanced in our run and pass attack. Like I said, I think he brings an energy to our offense that was lacking. It's still early and time will certainly tell, but we feel good about our potential, offensively."

On how important veteran leadership is in a transition like this:"I think it's important to an extent. Some of us have been through it a lot. We've been through it mid-season. There's nothing you can really do to prepare for it. You just put your head down and go to work every day. We're making some slight changes with verbiage and things like that, but for the most part, a lot of our concepts and everything is the same. Everybody should be able to pick it up fast. We don't blink an eye. We've seen a lot of things in this business. People come and go. You see players get injured, and it's the next man up. This is a similar situation. You just have to move forward and make the best of it."

On what teams are doing to prevent them from taking more deep shots: "I think it's a combination of things. Obviously, we have to have people respect our run game, get safeties up tighter and stack the box a little bit more. That opens things up deep. That's a big part of it. Also, we just have to be better at running concepts and certainly protecting the quarterback, like you mentioned. If you want to take deep shots, you have to have time to do it. All of those things come into play when you're talking about taking deeper shots. That's not the only thing we need to change. There were a lot of things from situational football and all of that that we were not very good at. Hopefully, we'll be able to correct those things, move the ball and make the most of the opportunities that we get in the red zone. We all felt good about moving the ball and being able to get in position to score, but we never took advantage of it when we were down there. I think that'll be an emphasis for us moving forward."

On if the coaching change has created a greater sense of urgency among the team: "There's a big urgency. When you see somebody go, you see somebody essentially get fired, it lights a fire under everybody. You understand that nobody's job is safe, from the head coach down to the long snapper, whoever that is. (sarcasm) (laughter) It does instill a sense of urgency. Marty steps up and is in this position, and we all want to play well for him. We all want to go out there and be explosive offensively and do really good things for him. Certainly a sense of urgency is in the building."

On why the offensive coordinator change in 2012 worked so well: "It's really tough to say or pinpoint one specific reason why it worked. I think we just kind of hit a plateau, offensively, with Cam Cameron, for whatever reason. It was not necessarily Cam's fault, but sometimes that happens in this business. Making the change just kind of sparked whatever it was that got us going. Whether that was a sense of urgency or whatever it was, it got us going. Hopefully this will do the same thing. Hopefully we have a similar result, and we can go all the way to the Super Bowl. That would be nice."


OLB Terrell Suggs

On if there is any significance to the defense having past success against Giants QB Eli Manning:"No, it is just the past. We don't really look at things like that. What happened in the past is just the past. This is this year. We have to win a football game, and they are going to try to win a football game."

On the key to limiting QB Eli Manning:"[The key is] to try to disguise your coverages the best you can. He is a Manning. They know what they are getting, they know exactly where they are going with the ball, and they become dangerous like that."

On how much the Ravens letting go of former offensive coordinator Marc Trestman affects the locker room: "It doesn't. It is part of the business. The show must go on, and we have lost people before. As you said, I'm on defense. That really has nothing to do with me. As a team, we trust in coach [John Harbaugh]. He makes the best decisions for the team, and we are going to go ahead and move forward."

On his thoughts on WR Odell Beckham Jr. and opponents trying to "get in" his head: "He is a great receiver in this league, and we are not getting involved in that. We are going to play football, and we don't care too much about it."

On how much of a desire the team has to win after two-straight losses: "We are itching for a 'W.' When you lose, everything is bad. You can fill in the blanks. The food is bad; everything is bad. We need to get a 'W,' and we need one now. They are coming off two [three] losses, too. There is only going to be one winner come Sunday, and we want it to be us."



WR Mike Wallace


On if the receiving corps has to do anything different without WR Steve Smith Sr. at practice: "I don't really think so, because I feel like we are all leaders. We all are always leaders. It is not like just because Steve is at practice, we are all just quiet and fall in line. Hell no, we are our own leader! Everybody is a leader in our group. I don't think we have to change anything, but we definitely wish he was out there, and we will pick it up for him."

On if there is a lot of change with Marty Mornhinweg replacing Marc Trestman as the offensive coordinator:"It is a little different. But at the same time, we have been around both of those coaches for a while. It is just a couple of extra things here and there, but I think for the most part, it might just be called different. I don't know about the whole playbook changing or anything like that. We might just call different plays at different times. I am pretty sure we will keep our base offense and add a couple things here and there. I just hope it is a great thing, because you never want to see anybody lose a job. But at the same time, you want to win football games, no matter who calls the plays, who runs the plays. We just want to win. Sometimes it is like that."

On Mornhinweg being very precise about receivers routes and how much of a change that is from Trestman: "I don't think it is that much of a change. I think coach Trestman was like that, too. I think he was pretty on it and would say, 'You ran this route at 14. I need you at 15.' In a split, he wants you here and not there. Coach Trestman might tell you to take one step out – maybe half a step – and I would be like, 'Man, I was this close.' He was precise, also, so I don't think much will change."

On if there is a sense of urgency from the Ravens and Giants:"We need to win. There is always a sense of urgency. I really don't think about the Giants; I don't care about the Giants, honestly. I know this is the NFL. I know the same thing they are thinking about on the other side is the same thing we are thinking on this side. We both want to get in the win column. We lost the last two; they lost the last three. There is a sense of urgency on both sides. I don't have to know their team or to talk to anybody on their team to know that."

On if it is too early to call this a must-win game: "I think so. But at the same time, we need to win."

On how much of the wide receiver routes, under Mornhinweg, are tailored to the dropback for QB Joe Flacco: "I'm not sure, honestly. I feel like we still have the same plays. We just have a couple more routes. I feel like it is all timed up for the dropbacks with Joe. I think it was like that when coach Trestman was here. Does it work out that way all the time? Obviously not. At the same time, I feel like the dropback is going to be timed up for the quarterback. How well we execute it is on us."

On Mornhinweg liking to go deep a lot: "I hope so. I remember coach Marty my first couple years in the league when he was in Philly. I used to see 'D-Jack' [DeSean Jackson] and 'Mac' [Jeremy Maclin] going up top all the time. Hopefully, we can get some of that done. At the same time, we can't forget about our underneath package either. Hopefully, we get some more shots. We definitely have the explosive players to do it. We just need to be a complete offense, and that is what we are trying to get to."

S Eric Weddle

On how the team is feeling heading into the game this weekend: "It is another opportunity. We are going to right this ship and get back on track by any means. We are just excited to get back out there and get the bad taste out of our mouth. We had an amazing practice today. We just have to keep the focus, keep the grind, keep playing together, and everything will work out."

On if the players could hear how upset the fans were when they were on the field: "Not really. We are so into the game and focused on our job. We can't control the outside. We can't control what people think of us. All that we can control is our effort and our attitude, sticking together and playing for each other. They made a change, we are going to move forward, and that is life in the NFL."

On how he was notified of the change at offensive coordinator:"We had our team meeting, and he told us. I'm sure most of the guys found out before that with social media and stuff. It is life in the NFL. It happens to players, coaches – all of us."

On if there can be a boost that comes from a change like this: "We are hoping that. Hopefully the offense and the team in general will be energized. I am just excited for another chance to get out there. We are 3-2, we are one game out of our division [lead], one game out of the AFC [lead]. The sky isn't falling, but we know we have to get better to reach our ultimate goal."

On how the team can try and contain Giants QB Eli Manning:"Just make things hard on him. The coverage has to be tight; we have to be close to the receivers. They have great wideouts. They mix in the running game. They keep you off balance with their scheme, offensively. Everyone needs to communicate. Everyone [should be] on the same page, and when they catch the ball, tackle them. Limit the yards after catch and nothing over our heads and make them work for everything. If we can do that, we have a shot at winning."


DT Brandon Williams

On the sense of urgency to win after two losses at home:"We're going to come up on every week before the bye week the same as we've done every week – prepare the same. The biggest thing is just execute. When it comes down to those little plays, we have to execute more. In the run game, we have to stop some runs that got out a little bit. Everywhere, [it is about] the little execution we have to do to become that full, 100-percent great team."

On if there is a sense for the defense to continue to play at a high level after the coaching change:"I heard what happened a couple of days ago. The biggest thing was just knowing coach [John Harbaugh] and the guys upstairs brought us all here for a reason, and we can all go for whatever reason. The biggest thing is staying focused, doing your assignment, reading your keys, doing everything and practicing to the best of your ability, because you never know when it's going to be your last [time]. Our defense is going to keep firing on all cylinders. We're going to keep grinding and keep playing the way we need to play. There are obviously some areas we need to pick it up in; that's why we have practice."

On the key to slowing down the Giants' offense: "The biggest thing is the same thing every week: stop the run, make them one dimensional and work off that. Eli Manning is a top quarterback. When he gets hot, he gets real hot. Definitely get after him, keep him in the pocket and don't let him step up. [We must do] stuff like that and normal routine things we go through every week." 


Head Coach Ben McAdoo

Can you talk about QB Eli Manning and what you've seen from him through the first five games?"So far, really the last couple of weeks, we haven't been performing as well as we would have liked, as an offense. [We are] focusing on our preparation this week and working to get better."

When you're facing a team like the Ravens, who just changed their offensive coordinator, does that alter the way you prepare for the offense? "It's a players' game. You have to get ready for the players you're going to face, first and foremost. I'm sure some things will remain the same, schematically. The tendencies will probably change, as they do with any difference in play-calling. We just have to trust our system, trust our Xs and Os and our players [and] put them in a position to be successful and see how the game unfolds that way."

In the last three games, is there anything you can put your finger on to explain why Manning has struggled? "When things go well, the quarterback sometimes gets a little too much credit. When things don't go well, he gets a little too much blame. I think there's enough of that to spread around, including myself."

The Ravens' defense has had a track record of success against Eli. What have you seen from this defensive unit? "I see a very physical, heavy-handed unit up front. It all starts with that front. They have a lot of pass rushers you have to account for. [Timmy] Jernigan is playing at a high level. They're doing a nice job, schematically, getting after you."

Coach, do you expect to have RB Rashad Jennings this week?"We'll see. He's a week closer than last week, and tomorrow will be a big day for us with the pads on."

What's the sense of urgency like in your building? You guys have lost three in a row there. We have lost two in a row here, but you have a bunch of home games coming up. "We have a sense of urgency. I'd like to think we have one each and every week. Coming off of this little down slide we're having … We're in a valley right now, and we need to climb out. This will be a great test for us."

Do you think there is something to the idea that a team that has lost a few games plays with something more on Sunday? "I think that any great team, or any team or any team that has a chance to put a trophy in a case, has to go through something. At some point in time, they have to do it together and have to fight through something. We'll see how this team responds. I like this team. I'm confident we will respond."

How challenging has it been to mix and match the secondary with all of the injuries you have had there? "It's been tough. Guys are in and out. It's a challenge for [defensive coordinator] 'Spags' [Steve Spagnuolo], I'm sure, calling a game when you have different guys in and out and which personnel groups you have available and which you don't. You adjust and you improvise, and you stay positive, and you trust the players on the field."

You have worked with a lot of good quarterbacks. What are your thoughts on QB Joe Flacco and his ability?"I was a graduate assistant at Pitt when he was a freshman there. I know Joe a little bit. He was a lot younger then. We had opportunity sessions after practice, and he was running around, running linebackers over in practice. It was full contact. You saw his size, his length, he had big forearms back then, so you knew he would be able to chuck it. He had great arm strength and arm talent. He was willing to sit in the pocket, and he still is to this day. He is a very resilient guy."

You're saying Joe would run at linebackers in practice and truck them? "I can remember we played in the Continental Tire Bowl. I remember him running over a linebacker in our opportunity bowl practice that week in Carolina." (laughter)

QB Eli Manning

On the issues with the Giants' offense the past few weeks:"[It's] just going against a couple of good defenses and just haven't been able to score when we got down. We've had some decent drives and just haven't been able to finish off the drives and sustain them long enough to get touchdowns on the board. We just have to find a way to get in rhythm, get some completions, get the run game and just get all of our weapons going."

On the challenges the Ravens' defense has presented over the years:"I can't really remember over the years. They're always a good defense. They have good players. We have to go out there and try to find ways to make plays and get positive yardage."

On how difficult it is to get back to the playoffs every year: "It's tough. You have to play good football week-in and week-out and be consistent. Each game is a great test each week. You have to bring your best football each and every week. [It is about] just trying to figure out how to do that and get the guys to believe that we have the talent and the potential to make this season special."

On the sense that they need to correct the ship before the season slips away: "We know we have to get going. Guys are committed to doing whatever it takes to change things and get back to winning again."

On the areas of the Ravens' defense that they can exploit: "They have played great defense all year. Not many teams are scoring a lot of points on them. Every game they have played has been a tight game and a close game. They do a great job on third down getting teams off the field. They're talented up front, and they do a good job getting pressure and stopping the run. We have to be balanced and find ways to move the chains get first downs and stay in good down and distance."

On where the Ravens rank in terms of defenses he remembers facing: "They always have a good defense and quality players and great coaching. You have to give them a lot of credit. Over the last 13 years, they've had some great defenses in Baltimore. They do a good job of showing different looks and getting their guys to play at a high level."

On his impression of Ravens CB Jimmy Smith: "Jimmy is playing at a high level. He's done a good job of mixing up his technique and playing man and doing a good job disrupting the timing of the offense and the routes. He's done a good job going against some of the better receivers of each team."

On how CB Jimmy Smith will influence his decision-making if he is lined up against WR Odell Beckham Jr.:"It just depends on what the route is and what concept we have. It just depends on what we're doing."

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