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Transcripts: Press Conference (1/10)


Opening Statement:"It's good to see everybody here. I appreciate you coming out. It's a great day for football – windy, blustery, frigid conditions out there – and we had a really good practice. I appreciate the guys' energy, the effort, [and] it was a very focused practice, and that's what we were looking for today, and that's what we'll be looking for the rest of this week through Saturday. So, we're off and running, and we're going to work. What questions do you have?" 

How did you enjoy your Monday night?*_(Jamison Hensley)_* "I enjoyed it. I enjoyed it. I especially enjoyed it when they got the scramble play, J.J. [McCarthy] got the scramble play out and then hit Colston [Loveland] on the crossing route, and then they scored. I was really happy about that. But I really was just proud of [my brother] Jim [Harbaugh]. That [Michigan] team, their faith, the connection they have with one another – they truly are a family. I think Jim talked about his football family and his family at home. Those two things are something we talk about here, being 100% committed to both those two things will take you far, and that team kind of epitomizes that. So, congratulations to Michigan. Congratulations to my brother." 

You don't get to take in a game of that magnitude like that as a fan often. I don't know when the last time was, but how different was that experience and how fun was it for you?*_(Shawn Stepner)_* "[I've] never [experienced that as a fan]. It was different and fun. I tell you; I was really taken with the crowd. I was on the sideline for a little while, gave Jim [Harbaugh] a little hug there and got up in the stands and was with our family. The stadium was just rocking, it was stuffed with people – half [Michigan] and half [Washington]. Really, when Michigan's defense was on the field, their fans were just screaming at the top of their lungs, [and] it was deafening. When Washington's defense was on the field, their fans were screaming at the top of their lungs, and it was deafening. So, it was deafening the whole time. There was no break, and half the stadium was loud as really any stadium I've been in. It was closed, the bands, the students, the whole college thing was really electric. It was really powerful."

When you watched the game, did you watch it as a fan, or is there any element that you watch it as a coach?*_(Brian Wacker)_* "I watch it as a fan mostly. I know what coverages they're in, I know what fronts they're in. I'm looking at that a little bit with some interest. But more than that, I'm probably just a little nervous and hoping for good outcomes as a fan just like a fan." 

What did you say to Jim Harbaugh when you tapped him on the sideline. It looked like he was really locked in and maybe didn't know what was going on.*_(Childs Walker)_* "Well, it's funny I've been asked that, and I forget what we talked about to be honest with you. But he kind of looked up and went, 'Oh John, hey.' Then he might have said, 'You made it.' But it was just great, it was ... Well, what happened was, I had been down there for about five or 10 minutes of the game, and they were going, [and] he was working. And then the ball came that way, then there was a timeout, and he was just like 10 feet away from me, so I'm like, 'That's my opportunity.' So, I rushed in at that point."

When you see your brother hoisting up a trophy and you see the confetti and your parents down on the field, do you maybe start to envision yourself maybe being there in that same type of spot in a couple of weeks?*_(Cordell Woodland) _*"Yes, of course. Like any brother [or] sibling, your brother gets something, you want it too, right? You do though. And [executive vice president & general manager] Eric [DeCosta] had mentioned that, too, afterward when we were walking off the field. You're down there, you see the team hugging, you become a part of the celebration and the confetti and the jubilation and the tears, and you just kind of ... It sinks in, 'Like man, I really want to experience this for our team. I want our team to experience this.' That's the big picture, that's the ultimate goal for the season and then with that back to one day at a time, one play at a time."

Would you ever get a tattoo to honor the team this season?*_(Jonas Shaffer)_* "I told my wife and daughter; they get first dibs on the tattoo choices probably. But a Super Bowl Championship would be pretty tempting, no doubt."

Just as soon as the season ended, you've had at least three assistant coaches that have had permission requested from other teams to interview for head-coaching opportunities. What can you say about that and how do you balance that versus what you're also working on now*_(Bo Smolka)_* "Well, yes, I say it's great. I say I'm really proud of our guys. I've said it many times, I think we have the best coaching staff in the world, and I love our coaches. I love the jobs they do. We have a bunch of coaches that are going to be coordinators, and they're going to be head coaches, on this staff – they're going to be very successful for a long time. It's just a great staff. So, any opportunities that they get, I support, and I'm excited for them to have those opportunities. There's really no balance with it at all because everything they do with the interview is set up outside of the work here. So, they do their full obligations here throughout the course of the week, and then there's one, two, some guys have three interviews, but that's done either late at night, later in the evening or possibly on the weekend if they have some time."

People talk about rest versus rust. You played 17 regular season games and have practiced since July. How much rust can possibly build up for two weeks?*_(Todd Karpovich) _*"It's not really about that, I don't think. We're going to have a great week of practice and try to get better in every single area and get sharper. One of the things we talked about was, 'Be your own biggest critic,' and in terms of being your own biggest critic this week and trying to improve in every area you can, you're also your own biggest advocate. So, advocate for yourself by being critical of yourself, and try to do the best you can to become as good as you can or better this week in terms of making improvements, and then we'll be ready and prepared for what's ahead of us."

What are your first impressions of RB Dalvin Cook, and do you view him as an insurance policy, or do you want him to start competing?*_(Pete Gilbert)_* "We view [Dalvin Cook] as a very valuable or potentially valuable weapon on our offense. So, obviously, Dalvin Cook is a high-pedigree player – highly-decorated player – and he still has talent and ability, and he's smart. He's in great shape, he's in football shape. He's been playing football [and] looked very good in practice out here today. So, I think he's going to be a valuable part of our team and the playoffs here."

Do you start to look at this week's games at all as who you potentially could face or is that too much coming at you? Also, if you do, is it helpful for the ones you would play against that you've already seen?*_ (Morgan Adsit)_* "Yes to both questions. We definitely know it's the four teams that we can play, and we're all looking at them. We're going back and looking at them. People that we played most recently; we've seen more on. People we haven't played like Houston [who] we haven't played for a while; we obviously have to work on. But that's what the coaches are doing. We're looking at every single possible team we could play and building ideas for those games."

QB Joe Flacco is leading the Browns this weekend. How do you approach that? Are you sort of cheering for the man, or do you separate the player's performance from what you want for the Browns? How does that work?*_(Kyle Goon)_* "I love Joe [Flacco]. We've texted back and forth a number of times since then, [and] it's been fun. I'm happy for him, for his family, [and] I'm excited for him. It doesn't really matter what team you have someone playing for ... And I always say, my dad was always a coach, so we never really were too much fans of teams, especially in football. We were fans of friends and family, that's who we rooted for. So, Joe is a friend and family to me. So, heck yeah, I root for Joe Flacco. But I don't root for any opponent that we're playing, so it doesn't really matter this week. We'll play whoever wins, and we're taking on all comers, so to speak. Then if it comes to them, if we're playing Joe – and we know a lot of other people on other teams, too, whoever you're playing – they become the opponent. And you're trying to defeat the opponent by any means necessary."

NT Michael Pierce had alluded to the idea that you're planning to do a stadium walk-through? Is that still the plan for Saturday? I can't remember if that was something you did the last time you had the bye week? What went into maybe doing that?*_(Childs Walker)_* "Yes, we're going to have a practice on Saturday at the stadium. It's a practice – it'd be the normal practice that we would do here. We just actually sat down and talked about it, and it came up in the conversation, 'Hey, about we take it to the stadium just to keep a rhythm.' I don't think we practiced on Saturday last time – that was a long time ago – but we didn't really practice on Saturday. But we thought that would kind of put us in more of a rhythm in terms of the pace as if you were playing a game this weekend."

For two weeks you practice to improve and play for better performance. What's the practice mentality of this week when you don't have much to grade the performance with no game?*_(Kyle Phoenix)_* "Right. The mentality is to do our best [and] to have our best practice today, so we can be best prepared for when the time comes when our best is going to be required which is a week from this weekend. So, it's really, 'Focus on one play and one day at a time this week. Stack up some good days and be the best football team we can be coming out of these four practices going into the preparation that we can.'"

Is it good to know that the four teams that you could potentially play, you've played all those teams at some point this season and two of them, you've played twice.*_ (Cordell Woodland)_* "Well, it's helpful. Most teams are familiar with each other to some degree. If you haven't played somebody, that's a little tougher. But the fact that we've played all four teams ... Everybody knows each other. It's going to be about going out there and putting a great gameplan together, of course, but just playing your best football."

There must be an exciting level knowing you're going to be at home for the first playoff game. I know you haven't had that in a while in the post season, that advantage.*_ (Noah Trister)_* "Well, it's going to be great. Being at home in any game is great. We love being at home here, and I'm looking forward to it."


On being named an All-Pro by the NFLPA: "It was cool to see, for sure. It's something that I've dreamed of since I can remember what being an All-Pro is. It's a dream until it happens. It's pretty cool to be voted on by my peers, which in my opinion is the most important opinion. Just to be voted by guys who I've looked up to and still look up to, to this day – to be honored by a group of people who are the best around the league. It's an honor."

On how he feels health-wise: "I was out there [at practice] today pretty much as a full participant. I got through it [and] did well. I'm feeling good."

On if he will be watching any of the Wild Card playoff games this weekend:"I'm not going to go out of my way to watch the [playoff] games, because I'm sure we'll be watching plenty of them next week. Whoever we end up playing out on the field, I feel like we played a lot of people who are still in the playoffs right now. At the end of the day, nameless [and] faceless opponent, so we're going to approach every game like we do in the past and like every opponent we approach. It doesn't really matter who we play in my opinion. I think we're just going to prepare for them the same way."

On how the vets on the team are setting the tone for the playoffs and how to approach the bye week: "We've done such a good job of – credit to the vets – creating somewhat of a playoff atmosphere every week throughout the year. I feel like it's been somewhat of a seamless transition the past week, not even the past week, just the past couple of days just getting to the playoffs. It's a blessing to have this bye week and allow us to be where our feet are and just get our minds right for the road ahead. But Lamar [Jackson], Roquan [Smith] [and] everybody who's a leader on this team has done a good job of just ... The intensity ramps up a little more, and it's win or go home this point, and I know we all don't want to go home right now, and we know we have a championship to win."

On if the talk about the 2019 team is a bit overblown since the team this year is a different team and how he feels about the comparisons between this team and the 2019 team: "I can't blame people for talking about it. Obviously, I wasn't here, I don't know too much of what happened, but we were first in the AFC and lost. That's all people have to go off of right now besides the Ray Lewis [and] Ed Reed days. So, we have to prove ourselves in the moment that we're capable of going to win a championship."

On what it's like seeing RB Dalvin Cook at practice: "It's pretty cool. It never gets old seeing guys who I've looked up to like Jadeveon Clowney – he's a really cool guy [and] just being able to chop it up with him [is cool]. Kyle Van Noy, Odell [Beckham Jr.] and then Dalvin Cook – I've been watching him dominate since [he played at] Florida State. It's cool to be on a team where we have a bunch of guys like that who have made their name for themselves around the league, and I can take bits and pieces from them."


On his focus during the playoff bye week: "[We're] just getting better. We had a couple days off, but [we're] just getting back in the swing of things. [We're] just staying loose [and] staying prepared for the [Divisional playoff] game next week. That's all. [We're] just staying focused on that [like] the small things and cleaning up details."

On how he celebrated his birthday on Sunday:"I just hung out with my family. That's all I did. I enjoyed it."

On if he is better at staying focused on the moment now compared to the 2019 season:"Yes. [It's] just from experience, though. That's why I say I'm better at it now. Probably when I was 22 [years old], it was like, 'I'm just going to stay locked in.' But, you're 22 years old, [and] you still have so much more to see – even at 27 [years old]. Just how things went before [in 2019] and me seeing different things now, that's what has me so locked in."

On his first impressions of newly-signed RB Dalvin Cook:"[Dalvin Cook's] awesome. [There's a] 954/305 [South Florida area codes] combination going on [in] Miami and Broward County. I'm really excited. I was happy about the situation. I reached out to him before the season when he was signing with the [New York] Jets before. God works in mysterious ways, and he's here now. So, that's cool."

On if he scouts potential AFC Divisional opponents ahead of time or if he waits until the matchups are set:"Yes, absolutely. When things kick off, and we see who we're going to play [in the AFC Divisional round], then I'll just be locking in. I don't want to just be watching film on teams that we're not going to be playing. I don't want my mind racing. We're just trying to stay locked in on what's going on now."

On what he can learn or take away from thinking back to the loss in the Divisional round during the 2019 season:"We lost [to the Tennessee Titans in the 2019 Divisional round]. We lost that game. We were so young, too. We had rookie receivers [and] a first full-time starting quarterback. We had a couple vets, but [our] running backs were young. We had Gus [Edwards]. We had Mark [Andrews], but Mark was hurt – our All-Pro tight end Mark Andrews was nicked up. We had guys that were down, but guys were fighting, and we were young at the same time. We were just starting to get into that situation of [a] playoff atmosphere, but I believe we're going to be better this year this time around."

On how he is more mature and different as a quarterback compared to the 2019 season:"[I'm more] experienced, I would say, and just knowing more just from seeing so much. In my six years, I've just seen a lot. I'd say that's where I've grown the most."

On how much of an impact RB Dalvin Cook can make:"There's no telling. With our offense – the guys we have on offense, the offensive line we have, and [Dalvin Cook] just being a dynamic player [that] he is – the sky's the limit. There's no limit for that. I don't know. I believe when he gets his opportunity and his number's called, he's going to do what he does [which is] 'Cook up.'"

On how important the offensive line has been this year and what his relationship is like with them:"It's very important for our guys to do their job. [The offensive line's] supposed to block. It's not my job to block – to drop back, read [pass] coverage and block at the same time." (laughter) "They're just giving me a lot of time to read out concepts and read the defenses and get the ball to my guys. It's tremendous. I feel like that's any quarterback's dream to just sit back in the pocket and just let things happen and develop and just throw strikes. I believe they got better throughout the season with guys going down and just getting healthy at the right time and just blocking their tails off. We just need to keep it going."

On what it means to receive All-Pro honors from his NFLPA peers: "It means a lot. [It's] respect from my peers. [They're] guys who we're trying to beat [and] guys [who are] trying to beat us and who we're facing, week in and week out. It means a lot. It's an honor."

On if there is another player besides Tom Brady that gets him in the same mode as when he talked to Brady on the Let's Go podcast:"I don't know. [Tom Brady's] the seven-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback right there. Nobody beats that. You're going to be excited talking to Tom. I try to pick his brain, so I'm just always excited to speak to him."

On what Tom Brady's comments to him about him being one of the reasons some people watch the NFL means to him:"It was an honor. I told [Tom Brady] that. He was telling me about a [highlight] clip from high school that went viral. I wasn't expecting him to say that, so that let me know he's been watching me for a long time. That's just cool for Brady to feel that way about me as a player. That means a lot."

On if it is encouraging to see a record number of Black quarterbacks in the NFL playoffs this year and if he takes pride in watching someone like Houston Texans rookie QB C.J. Stroud play well:"It's great to see. Life's just different now. Stuff is evolving. Guys are just being great and just showing off their true talent. C.J. Stroud is a tremendous quarterback. I told him when we played against him earlier this season in the first game of the season – I was like, 'You're amazing out there.' College doesn't even compare to what he is right now just from me watching from afar. He's a great quarterback, and for other Black quarterbacks to be playing in the playoffs, that's tremendous. Hopefully, more guys will be included as the years go on."

On how much he can attribute his career high in completion percentage to developing his footwork: "I believe everything plays its part – maturity, footwork, studying – everything. [I'm] just trying to be a better player and just trying to be a great player at this high-level game we're playing. [I'm] just trying to get better at everything, so I believe that's what's helping me out with the accuracy."

On if he will be watching former Ravens QB Joe Flacco play for the Cleveland Browns in their AFC Wild Card game against the Houston Texans: "I don't know if I'm going to watch the game, but I know I'll watch film." (laughter)"It's great to see Joe [Flacco] back playing. I always felt like he was elite just from my rookie year watching him practice [and] seeing him throw the ball across the field, flat-footed. I was like, 'Dang. This guy.' It's all mechanics. If we play him, hopefully he'll be showing off the 'Joe elite' then. It would be great to play against him."

On if he is antsy waiting to play in the Divisional round:"I'm antsy, but I have to stay locked in knowing what's ahead. We have nothing ahead right now. We're just practicing and trying to get better for whoever our opponent is next week. I'm definitely antsy."

On if it is hard practicing when the team doesn't know who their opponent will be: "Not if you're antsy." (laughter)

On how he approached having more freedom at the line of scrimmage and how he developed the way he sees the field reading defenses: "It starts with Coach 'Monk' [Todd Monken]. He told me when he first got here ... He texted me, actually, because I was down in Florida. He was up here, I guess, and he was telling me, 'I'm going to give you the keys to the offense. It's up to you to make certain decisions at the line [of scrimmage]. If you don't like it, put us in a better situation, but if you mess up, it's going to be on you.' I'm cool with that, because I'm seeing the field, and I'm out there. I'm the one that has to make things happen – my teammates and [me]. I can't give you the secret on how I see the game. I'm not going to just give you that." (laughter)

On how he developed the skills to throw jump passes and attempt side arm throws:"[I'm] just delivering the baby. I'm just trying to deliver the baby to my guys. That's all I'm trying to do. [I'm] just getting the ball to the playmakers. That's my job. I can't run and hand it to them, so I have to try my best of my ability to get the ball to those guys and let them do the rest just like the prior week to the Dolphins game. I have to get the ball to those guys. We all see what they can do with the ball in their hands, so I just have to do my job to keep trying to distribute the ball."

On how important is his role of being able to recruit players to join the Ravens like WR Odell Beckham Jr. and RB Dalvin Cook and what his pitch is:"I don't know, because they ... 'OB' [Odell Beckham Jr.] got here, [and] he signed right away, but Dalvin [Cook] went to the [New York] Jets first. We ended up getting him late in the season. I don't really know how my recruiting game is. I have to talk to [executive vice president & general manager] Eric [DeCosta]. I might have to talk to Eric."


On if he's going to watch all of the Wild Card games or if he's going to let it come to him:"I'm just letting it come to me. The games are going to be everywhere. Everybody is going to be excited for the Wild Card games and stuff like that, but I'm just going to let it come to me and just enjoy football, take care of my body and just do my thing on the weekend."

On if it's helpful that they've already played their next potential playoff opponents this season:"It's helpful, because we've played that team before, so we can see things that we did well in, and we can keep adding onto those things that we didn't do well as well on. So, we can just clean up those things in practice. We've seen them in practice already and in the games, so [we're] going on the iPad and finding things I can get better, and we'll go and execute in games."

On where the team's focus and tunnel vision philosophy comes from: "I think it's just a good mix with young players and vets that have been there and done that. Kyle Van Noy is a guy who has been to the [Super Bowl] three times and won two of them. [Tavius Robinson] is a guy that's very young, hungry and ready to learn. We have guys in the middle like [Patrick Queen] and I. Everybody just loves each other. Everybody is here for that one goal, and everybody is just locked in, on the same page, taking it one day [and] enjoying each other while we're still here, because it's a blessing to be in the playoffs. Now, we have to take it one day at a time and execute and just take it one game at a time, as well."

On what makes this team and their opportunity special:"It's just the guys that we have, obviously, starting with Lamar [Jackson] and how the offense has been playing well – lights out – [and] us on defense, starting with Roquan [Smith]. Kyle [Hamilton] is playing his tail off. Everybody has just been playing at a high level. We just have to take it one day at a time. Everybody [needs to] care of their body and just enjoy this time while we have it together [during] the Bye Week and get ready for next week."

On what practice was like today because they were not game planning for a specific opponent: "It was just a look of things that we've already seen on the defensive side – I can only speak for [that] at least – like trap schemes, stuff that we [saw] versus the [Pittsburgh] Steelers [and] even Miami, as well. Running to the ball and stuff like that [and] getting our conditioning up, those are the things that we really saw today in practice."

On how beneficial the time off is:"I think it's huge. I think it's huge especially [for] guys who are banged up a little bit. They can get their feet under them [and] make sure they're taking care of their body. It's good for us, as well, just cleaning things up, not having the stress of worrying about an opponent on the weekend [and] instead, just taking care of your body and cleaning things up that we know we can be better at."

On if it feels strange to have a Bye Week in January or is it welcomed:"I'd say [it's] more on the welcomed side. [It's] just nice to have it. Guys are banged up, so it's another great opportunity for them to get better. [We're] taking it one day at a time and seeing how your body feels, because next week, we're definitely going to have somebody that we're going to play. That's when everybody is going to get more locked in, but this week is more relaxed. We're just basically letting it come to us."


On being voted an All-Pro performer by the NFLPA:"It's a tremendous honor to be acknowledged amongst your peers as one of the best in the game, but at the end of the day, it doesn't matter as much. It's a matter [of] what we do as a team, and I've got a lot of really good teammates around me that make me look a lot better than I am. So, I'm just grateful for these guys at the end of the day. But I love the game, and [that's] not really why I'm playing the game. I'm really chasing that big thing, and that's what it's all about at this point. All the personal accolades, that stuff comes and goes."

On his mentality and approach this week:"Take advantage of this week [and] get everything you can out of this week, hone in on the fundamentals, make sure your cardio is good and just make sure to keep reminding yourself [to] be ready to rock and roll next week – whatever day that is."

On of he's anxious to play:"No, I'm not anxious. I'm always about preparation, so I'm just preparing, preparing, preparing, and when my opportunity comes – just like anything else in life – I'm going to be there to take it full and take off with it."

On what practice was like today:"Fundamentals, and then just doing what we do – playing football – because at the end of the day, it's football; that's all you can practice, and it's run or pass. [We were] just working on plays and just working on ourselves, and I think that was huge, and it goes a long way."

On if he has another level of intensity for playoff football:"Wait and see."(laughter)

On the defense winning the triple crown after leading the league in points allowed, sacks and takeaways:"Yes, that's big time – to be acknowledged in that way – but at the end of the day, that was in the regular season, and our plans have shifted to the postseason. So, that's great – we did 'this' and we did 'that' – but none of that matters in this season of ball, because what matters is getting that dub one week at a time. We know what we're chasing, so that's our biggest thing, and it's going to start one week at a time."

On already having faced each potential Divisional round opponent, and if he's going over old notes or waiting for results this weekend:"You have to just wait and see who that opponent is. And you obviously know who ... It's going to be – what – one of four teams? I'm not quite sure. So, it's going to be something like that. But at the end of the day, the playoff teams are a bit different; everybody is going to give you everything they've got, because it's win or go home. It's your life or their life, and most cats are going to choose their own. So, when you look at it from that perspective, it's going to be intense, regardless of who the battle is against. But just know, we'll be ready – locked and loaded."

On how much of an emphasis he puts on setting the tone for this team and having the right mindset heading into the playoffs:"It means a lot. It's about starting fast, and I know, these couple games in the past – but that's the regular season – didn't start quite the way we wanted [them] to. So, it's just about emphasizing that throughout practice, throughout this week, as well [as] into next week, and just knowing, 'Hey, we have to start fast. If we start fast, [have] attention to detail – on our crap – play in and play out, no one can touch us. But when we get complacent and [are] not doing things to our standard, that's when slips come in the crack.' But we just know that, and we just have to attack each and every detail, and I feel as [though] if we do that, everything else will take care of itself."

On S Kyle Hamilton's growth:"Yeah, honestly, man ... I joke with [Kyle Hamilton] sometimes ... Funny story ... I don't know if I've ever said it, but I used to tell him [that] I was questionable about him when I first got here and whatnot. I don't know if he ever said that. I wasn't really sure [about him] – [he's a] Notre Dame guy, no disrespect or anything like that. He's from [Atlanta] Georgia, though, in a sense."(laughter) "But this year, day in and day out, I saw him doing a lot of really good things in the latter part of OTAs [organized team activities] when he got [here], as well as in [training] camp, and I'm like, 'Hey, man, this guy is so versatile [and] can do so many things.' And he's just proving it to the league. I saw it all throughout camp. So, I think the guy's ceiling is still so high, and he's just scratching the surface of what he truly can be. And I'm grateful that he's on our defense and can create so many different pictures when he's out at nickel, giving me edges. I think he's the best perimeter edge setter in the league – as far as [defensive backs] and things of that nature – and the guy comes through an alley, and he'll serve you up a cold dish, as well, if you come through slipping. So, he's definitely got some of my mentality in him, so I've got to ... He's getting out of his shell more and more, so I'm just excited for him, and I think there are just so [many] great things in store for him."

On the Ravens adding a guy like RB Dalvin Cook to the practice squad:"Obviously, [Dalvin Cook] is a tremendous player [who's] done a lot of great things in this league – Pro Bowls, multiple 1,000-yard [rushing] seasons. So, when you have a [running] back like that ... Going against him twice a year up in Minnesota when I was in Chicago, [I] have a great deal of respect for the way the guy plays the game. So, I'm glad that he's here. I think he's definitely going to be able to help us. In whatever capacity that is, I'll leave that up to the coaches. But I'm grateful that he's here, and I think [he's] going to be a great asset for our team."

On if there was a moment this season where he thought this team could really go all the way:"I think that every time I line it up [and] every time I strap it up. I tell the guys, 'I have the utmost respect [and] utmost faith in everything that we do, and if we play to the best of our ability, look ourselves in the mirror, day in and day out, everything we want will be right there in front of us.' But it just starts with one game at a time. And we know the type of potential that we have on this team, but it's about showing that, play in and play out and game in and game out. And if you do that, everything else will take care of itself – with the type of guys we have here."

On how the team has embraced the attitude of wanting all the smoke:"[We] embrace it every single day [with] the way we go out to work, as far as practice, as well [as] when we go out to games. We want cats to know, 'Hey, you just played the 2023 Baltimore Ravens, and those guys knocked your [stuff] off,' or whatever the case may be. You can fill that [word] in [with] whatever you feel fits. But that's kind of the mentality we want. [We're] just a bunch of hungry dogs. Like, have you ever been on a safari, [or] have you ever been in the wild and just seen cats that are trying to survive and trying to make their next meal? I feel like we have that mentality, and we know [that] if one gets a kill, we're all going to share it, at the end of the day. And when you have that mentality, man, it's pretty sweet. And when it's guys [who are] so selfless [and] don't care who gets the recognition, that's the best type of team you want. I know [that] many guys would die to be in the position that we're in, as far as a type of team, because there are so many just genuine, good dudes, but when you get on that field, cats still want to rip your face off and maybe cut your hair, too." (laughter)

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