HEAD COACH JOHN HARBAUGH
Opening Statement: "Good to see everybody. I really appreciate you being here. I'm just really, really proud of our guys, coming here, the environment, the team we were playing, how well they were playing – and believe me, they're a very good football team, very well coached, very good football team with a lot of good football in front of them, as we well know, in our division. So that win speaks a lot. I'm really proud of our guys for the way they played. I thought they handled themselves well. [They] played about as well as you can play in those circumstances against that kind of an opponent. I thought we were really patient throughout the course of the game, especially in the first half – [we went] three-and-out, three-and-out, three-and-out – against this defense, this great defense. And just to kind of not get out of whack and keep our heads about us and keep trying to pound ... And then we were able to get a couple big drives, good turnover here and there and get a couple scores, which is what you have to do against a great defense like that. Roquan [Smith] leading us on defense … Our defense received the spike, because they pretty much closed out the game out; the whole game. That's what they did, every single series, led by 'Ro' [Roquan Smith] and all of the rest of the guys. I thought our corners really stepped up, safeties played well, [and] our run defense – that's a really good running offense, and they were getting some yards on us here and there. And our [defensive] tackles really started squaring up on their O-line. I thought we set the edge well. And then Brandon Stephens getting his first-ever interception – that was really big. Then Kyle Hamilton getting his first interception at the end was awesome. So, [I'm] just really proud of all the guys. I thought Mark Andrews just played an incredible game. And then finally, Lamar [Jackson] … [You're going against the top rated] defense was really a challenge, and Lamar kept his poise. He was running the show out there. He was the point guard; He was the general. He was making the calls, making the changes, [and] handling the shot clock. I just thought he played a fantastic football game. What questions do you have?"
(on how good it is to have victories at two AFC North road games) "Well, it's a good start. It's a good start. We have all these AFC North road games on our schedule right away, and that's an opportunity, and our guys have taken advantage of that so far. Now we're going to go to Pittsburgh next week. So, in 24 hours, and then we have to get locked in on Pittsburgh, because we're going to have to be a better football team than we were this week to go to Pittsburgh and win next week, and that'll be our goal and our mission."
(on what was the difference on this game in the team's ability to bounce back after the early fumble) "That's a good question, and I think the progress you make from one week to the next is really what it's all about. The ability to improve [and] to learn from your mistakes. The victory that is hidden inside of defeat is something that is hard to recognize sometimes, but our guys did that, and they got to work, and they improved in those areas, and they cleaned that up from last week. So, we just have to keep getting better every week along those lines."
(on how felt getting the run game going in the second quarter and two touchdown drives) "It's everything. It was everything. I thought our [running] backs ran super well – hard down hill [runs]. Some of the gap schemes – those are tough. Our offensive line, those guys are penetrating up field. They're very good players – inside and on the edge, and the [running] backs are [heading] down hill hitting gaps. So, you have to stop the penetration, and you have to get off those blocks and get those linebackers before they get in your backfield and make a play. Offensive line, tight ends – just [did] a tremendous job with that this game."
(on if finding out QB Deshaun Watson was ruled out before the game change the team's plans) "No, we had the same plan. I think they run the same offense. Of course, Deshaun Watson is who he is and Dorian [Thompson-Robinson] is who he is. But, we really prepared to play against their offense and that's what we did very well."
(on any updates on T Morgan Moses)"I don't. I think we'll know more tomorrow. Those are the things that we'll need to take a look at with an MRI."
(on how important and impressive were the back-to-back touchdown drives) "They were massively important. They were really the game. It gave us an opportunity to get in position to win the game and we were backed up on both of those, were we not? Weren't backed inside our [10-yard line] on both of those? And for Lamar [Jackson] … [It's] like I was just saying a second ago, and really, it's everybody on offense. But against that defense which tries to basically stop you before you get started – that's their M.O. [and] to not allow that to happen, it's like an all-out blitzkrieg to start the play … And they're still good in the back end. It's not like you can just throw it behind them, and for Lamar to handle that backed up, The Dawg Pound behind him – the motions, the shifts, the checks at the line, changing the plays when we had to change the play, signaling to the receivers when he had to signal the receivers, ball handling under pressure like that ... I just think that's what makes him the quarterback he is, and that's what won us the game in those two drives right there. It gave us the chance to go all the way down the field. Those were really praise-worthy drives."
(on how ILB Roquan Smith set the tone for the defense) "I think he helped set the tone for the defense. That kind of sounds like a rhetorical question right there. He sets the tone. He did set the tone this week and the thing I love about 'Ro' [Roquan Smith] is he's Ro. He's himself. He's the best version of himself. He's honest. He's straightforward. He's a man of character and he's a leader and he backs it up. And that's what he did and all the guys had his back, and as a coach, you're going to be proud of that."
(on QB Lamar Jackson running the ball and how important it is for him to go back to that)"Well, let's not go back to or go to it or anything else. Lamar [Jackson] is who he is as a player because of who he is and what his ability and talents and his hard work and his intelligence and all those things. So, he's going to bring his full skillset to every game. That's what he's going to do. That's what he does. That's why he is who he is."
TE MARK ANDREWS
(on if the offense took it as a challenge going up against the NFL's No. 1 defense in the Cleveland Browns)"We come out here every week ready to go – ready to play. I thought the guys did a really good job. We don't look too far into anything else. I thought we were pretty good. Of course, there's always stuff to get better at."
(on playing with QB Lamar Jackson and being on the same page with him on his two touchdown catches) "He's special. He's just so special – everything that he does. I thought he played an incredible game of just continuing to fight and extend plays and to make the big-time throws. It was time and time again that No. 8 bailed us out and made this offense tick. I think we did a good job. I think the offense did pretty good. I think we did better."
(on how it feels to be doing the things that you know you can do after recovering from an injury)"It feels good to be back and be back and feeling better and healthy. I'm just trying to help this team win games and make plays. Personally, I made a step in the right direction. As an offense, we need to be better. I think Coach 'Monk' [Todd Monken] called a really good game. And as we get guys back healthy, we're going to be better."
(on the play when he caught his first touchdown pass of the game)"I think that [I] just ran a corner route. Lamar [Jackson] – I think he rolled out just a little bit and threw an incredible ball back right corner [of the end zone] by the pylon up high. [I] just went up and made a play. That was a fun one."
(on what he appreciates about QB Lamar Jackson that does not get enough credit) "He's the full quarterback. He's not only just a full quarterback – he's able to do so many other things that other quarterbacks can't do. That's a beautiful thing. Lamar Jackson's second to none."
(on what being a full quarterback means) "He's the full quarterback."
(on what it says about the offense being able to score 28 points against the NFL's No. 1 defense coming into the game)"I think that you look at the type of game that we played today, [and] you have to give credit where credit is due. Special teams, defense – they played really good games. They had our backs. We had their backs. I think the offense – we did a good job moving the ball. We had some really good drives. We did some really good things, and we have to be able to stack and continue to do that, drive after drive after drive – being a really good offense like we know we can be. There were times today that it looked really, really good."
OLB JADEVEON CLOWNEY
(on how satisfying it was to come back to Cleveland and win) "It's very satisfying. You work all week to come out here, compete for four quarters and get a win every week. We're working hard, like I said, for these types of games."
(on the mentality of the defensive even with some players injured)"We have a lot of 'dawgs,' a lot of hungry guys on this defense, a lot of guys that just want to out there, compete and make plays. That's what makes us good, and I love it."
(on if this game meant any more to him because he played for the Cleveland Browns last year)"No, it doesn't matter. [I want to] just win. It was in our division. We have to play them again. Right now, we're in a good situation, a good spot, going into another division game next week. We're going to need the same attitude, the same intensity, bringing into that game to come out and win another game."
(on how winning two road divisional games early in the season puts the team in a good situation moving forward) "It's good. Like I said, it's good to get some [division] games early and get the wins early because they begin to count much more after December football when you start getting ready for the playoffs and wanting to know where you stand at. You don't want to have to win late or be worried about winning or [be in a situation where] somebody else has to win for you. You want to put it in your own hands, and right now, we're taking control of that, and we're doing it."
(on how it feels no longer being the person to chase QB Lamar Jackson down)"I'm not getting tired, That's the difference. I got tired today though. 'DTR' [Dorian Thompson-Robinson], he had jukes and moved so well back there. I was getting frustrated chasing him a bit. That's part of the game though. We do all of that work to get past the offensive line. You have to finish on the quarterbacks. It gets tough sometimes, but like I said, we did what we had to do today. [We] got the win, and that's all you can ask for."
(on if he thinks this defense has another level to get to)"Oh, for sure. Like I said, we're all missing plays, we left some plays out there today, but one thing I know about the guys since I've been in Baltimore [is] we come to work each week. We prepare very hard, and it rolls over into the game for us. I know what we have in this locker room. We have some well put-together guys that just like to work. We have a bunch of leaders, and when you have that, you don't even really worry about what's going on in the game. You just continue to play with that group, and you know it's going to work out."
(on if ILB Roquan Smith reminds you of anyone you've played with in the past) "No. Roquan [Smith] is his own man. I have not played with anyone like Roquan. In 10 years, no linebacker I've ever played with [has been] better than him. I have a lot of friends that played with me, too, at linebacker, but they don't have the attitude or intensity they play with like Roquan Smith since I've played in the League. He'll be a big reason why our defense goes the way it goes. He's bringing the best out of a lot of guys around him. When you have a leader like that that's going to put it all out there not just on Sundays, but on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, the whole week, and you come to the game, and it just rolls over. It rubs off on people. It's contagious. We just stick together, and 'Go Ro.'"
(on how much easier it is to play when the offense is putting up points and finding consistency) "It's very easy [to] get the other team off their gameplan sometimes, because you don't get to have to drop back more than you want to, trying to play catch up. When you can get points put up, we know we can go out there, pin our ears back and rush the passer. That's a good situation for the defensive line."
(on how he would describe how he fits into Baltimore's culture so far) "I think I should have been here. I fit in well with this group. Like I said, we have some pretty good, exciting guys that I hang out with on the regular. We just rub off on each other, and I love it. I'm enjoying myself, feeling young, feeling good being a part of this group and just loving football again. That's what it's about; having fun and loving football. That's how I know my game is going to pick up because I'm having a lot of fun."
(on if he thought Browns QB Deshaun Watson would play today)"Of course. I did not believe he was sitting out even when they told me in the locker room. I was like, 'Man, there's no way. They're probably playing with us.' We prepared for both of them throughout the week. We prepare for everybody, like I said, each week varies, preparation-wise throughout the week for us this team. It didn't matter who was at quarterback. We were going to go out there and put our gameplan together. [Defensive coordinator] Mike [Macdonald] calls a great defensive gameplan every week. We just try to execute the calls he puts out."
WR ZAY FLOWERS
(on the 43-yard completion he had in the game) "It's something [Lamar Jackson and I] worked on. Lamar is going to run around and create plays after the play. So, we just work on that every day, and I saw him running, and I just shot all the way to the corner, and he threw it to me."
(on what the offense was able to do today against the top-ranked defense in the league) "We were able to run the ball. And if you're able to run the ball, you're able to do whatever you want and control the game. So, we were able to do that. Gus [Edwards], Lamar [Jackson] and Justice [Hill] played great and made it easy on us."
(on what it says about the team to lose a lot of players to injury and still win on the road) "Everybody prepares the same way. So, we bring … Whoever turns up next, we are all prepared to take over that role and do what we have to do to get a win. And last week, we were disappointed. So we came out this week and were detailed and executed everything we needed to."
(on what it's like being with QB Lamar Jackson in the red zone)"You never know what you're going to get. He can run it, [or] he can throw it. He can do whatever you need him to do to get in the end zone. So, when we're down there, it's kind of like automatic."
(on what it was like watching the Ravens' defense play)"It was fun. It felt like I was on defense the way I was jumping around."
(on if anyone took it personally on the hype of the Browns' defense) "I wouldn't say personal, but we knew what we had to come out and do, and we came out and did that."
S KYLE HAMILTON
(on who he's giving his game ball to) "The one Coach 'Harbs' [John Harbaugh] gave me – I'll probably give it to my mom – she's outside." (Reporter: Are you giving her the interception ball?) "I am, but I don't know [my mom] might want that ball instead. We'll see."
(on chatter on the Browns' defense being good and how what it was like to walk out of the game with three picks from this defense) "I feel like we hear all that stuff, but we don't really listen to it. Now there's no noise [and] people have to fill time by talking about somebody, and the Browns have been a great team so far – credit to them. Their defense has been lights out, but at the same time, I'd pick us over anyone any day. Offense, defense, special teams, no matter what it is, and I think we came out and proved that today. But like I've been saying, it's more important for us to go out there next week and prove it again. And then again and again and again all the way up until the Super Bowl. That's the mindset we have, and we're not going to be satisfied until we win it all."
(on why the team keeps losing players on secondary each game) "I've been asked this question a good amount throughout camp, and this whole year we had guys go down. We had a couple guys go down today. It's kind of funny how you put new pieces in, and [we get] the same result. That goes to our preparation. [The] guys are taking their job seriously, no matter how low or high you are on the depth chart, your name can be called up. We play a violent sport, and guys go down all the time. So, shoutout to Kevon Seymour [and] Arthur Maulet today. I'm missing a bunch of other guys, but those are guys who don't get a ton of reps during the week [and] come in there know what they're supposed to do. So, props to them."
(on how good this defense can be)"We kind of used this metaphor yesterday in the meeting, but [it was], 'When you take a magnifying glass and focus the sunlight, you can kind of heat something up, start a fire,' and we're trying to build that. Sunlight spraying everywhere doesn't really do a ton, but you magnify it, and everybody focuses on one thing, one goal. You create a fire to start a fire. So, we're trying to start a fire."
RB JUSTICE HILL
(on what are the differences from last week to this week)"That was that – execution – because every play that they draw can win, and if we don't execute it, we won't ever see that. So, this week, we're just going to focus on that. So, we're going to execute on every play they call and do our assignment."
(on what's it like having a quarterback like QB Lamar Jackson) "It's really nice because you have that first play, but then when that play breaks down, you still have the second play that Lamar [Jackson] can make. It's just a special thing to watch and be a part of it."
(on what point in the game did they feel like they can throw it down the field and it would go their way) "We came into the game really thinking that. We [are] very familiar with these guys, and we know that if we come out there to run the ball, we can do that. There's not anything that they knew we can't really handle. So, we just came out there and established that."
(on what the offense was able to do against the Browns run defense)"[We] just gave them different looks and move … Not the stationary looks and just come right at them. A lot of teams kind of play timidly. We're going right in and attacking them."
(on the Browns' defense setting up on the Wide-9 and did it make it easier on the team up the middle)"It could have something to do with it, but our coaches have good schemes. They put together a good running game for us, and we just go out here execute those things, and we get success with it."
(on if the mood in the stadium changed on those two back-to-back touchdowns) "That's momentum shifts. Whenever you can get some big plays, the big explosive plays and put points on the board, the defense feels that, the offense feels it, special teams, [and] everybody feeds off of it. So, I would definitely say momentum shifts."
(on the success they were able to have due to having a quarterback like QB Lamar Jackson) "Yes, that has a lot to do with it. And then really just [our] mindset of knowing they're not going to come in here, or we're not going to come in here and get stopped. And that's what we came out with from the first play to the last play. It's just, 'We're not getting stopped.'"
QB LAMAR JACKSON
(on if he feels like the offense made a statement today scoring 28 points against the NFL's No. 1 defense) "No, not really. There's still room to grow for us. We're still building. We had mishaps on the field. We had a fumble that gave the ball back to the defense. I thought our defense made a great stop. I feel like we left points on the board. Every week we've been playing, I felt like we've been leaving points on the board [because] of little miscommunications and mishaps, but we just need to keep focusing, keep getting better. We got the W, so I feel like we played [well]."
(on his thought process to extend the play at the end of the first half and throw it to WR Zay Flowers instead of going out of bounds) "[I'm] just trying to make something happen. We didn't really want to be second-and-26. We had a sack, I think, on that drive, a sack that kicked us out of field goal range, so I was ticked off because last week, that happened as well. We had great field position and got kicked out of [field goal] range. So, Zay [Flowers] made a great play. The [offensive] line gave me a lot of time to make a read and give him a great ball, and he made a great catch."
(on how he feels he's maturing as a quarterback in some of the small details like ball handling)"Last week, I was just immature, so [I] just have to be week-in and week-out consistent with those situations. Me being a quarterback and me having the ball in my possession every drive, [I] just have to keep getting better at that and just keep staying focused."
(on what advice he can give to a young quarterback like Browns QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson who had a rough day) "That's the NFL. Things like that are going to happen. We don't want them to happen, and he faced a great defense for his first start. [I'd tell him to] just keep being locked in [and] keep watching film. The sky is the limit for him because he's a pretty good quarterback. It was his first NFL game besides preseason, so it's different. The atmosphere is very different."
(on if he felt like the mood in the stadium changed after the touchdown pass to TE Mark Andrews right before half time)"To be honest, I wasn't really worried about the crowd or the stadium. I was focusing on us scoring a touchdown, just driving the ball down the field [and] just finishing in the end zone. That's what I was trying to do. We had a two-minute drive going, [and I was] just trying to focus on winning, and we got the job done. We scored."
(on how it felt to end that drive with a touchdown pass to TE Mark Andrews) "It was pretty good, but as I said in the locker room at halftime, we have to stay locked in. Anything can happen. A couple of years ago, we were losing to the [Indianapolis] Colts in the fourth quarter, and we made a comeback, so anything can happen. You can't just get overwhelmed with scoring right before halftime because there are two more quarters left."
(on if that throw through traffic was because he had trust in TE Mark Andrews to catch the ball) "Absolutely. I had to pay attention to the corner. He was in the flat, but I believe if I would have tried to shoot it to Mark [Andrews], he could have made a play on it and probably intercepted it. So, I just gave Mark a shot, and he did the rest."
(on what he credits to his two touchdown throws and two touchdown passes) "I'm just taking what the defense gives me. Touchdowns [are] what we're all about on offense. We're trying to do that, and we're trying to win at the end of the day."
(on how the team's use of motion opened things up for the run game or the pass game) "I believe we had great communication getting in and out of the huddle and having guys shift and do motions because before, we were rushing and not communicating well. This game, I feel like we did pretty well." * (on what mindset he has when he's near the end zone to try and get into the end zone)*"Just what you said: get into the end zone. We're trying to score. You'd have to go back to a few years ago; we were getting into the red zone and not scoring. I believe a lot of that came with [lack of] focus, and as we get into the red zone – or the black zone, as Coach [Todd Monken] calls it – we have to focus harder just because we got all the way down here, [so] we have to finish the drive instead of having 'Tuck' [Justin Tucker] come on the field and kick field goals like usual."
ILB ROQUAN SMITH
(on if there was a cheer for him in the locker room following the game) "What was in the locker room was in the locker room. We'll leave that in the locker room."
(on how he felt the defense played) "I feel like we played a really good game, defensively, besides letting our rush out at the end of the game – little things like that get to me, but we sealed it with an interception. It was a great team win. I enjoyed going out there with the guys [and] laying it out on the line every single play. It's what I pride myself on, and it was a great team win."
(on if there is something about facing the Cleveland Browns that brings out the best in him)"Honestly, if you watch me play week in and week out, you'll see I play the same style to the whistle. If I'm on your team, you love it. If I'm not, you don't. I just respect the game. I have so much respect for the game. My style – I say, 'Hey, I'm going to give it everything I have, because I don't know which play will be my last. That's how I play the game and [how] I'll always play the game until I hang up the cleats."
(on how the defense has been able to play at a high level despite switching players in and out due to injuries)"Honestly, whoever lines up out there, they're warriors. How I think of it – we all go to war for each other. We all have each other's backs, and if they're out there – the coaches and myself have the utmost respect for those guys that they can get the job done regardless of who's out there with us. You love when your guys are out there, and you know there's some fallen soldiers. When they get back, they get back, but until then, we just have to keep going the course. We can't get sidetracked by [a] little adversity on the road."
(on if the defense saw this game as a measuring stick game)"Honestly, like I said earlier in the week in the presser, I don't concern myself with their defense. I focus on going against the offense and our defense. That's my main thing. I heard that they were like the No. 1 defense in the league through Week . That's through Week . It's a long season along the way. What you do Week 1, Week 2 – it's not about the sprint. It's about the marathon. Hats off to those guys for playing good defense. I respect them. They play defense. I respect people that play defense, but at the end of the day, I'm more concerned about our defense and the offenses that we go up against week in and week out."
(on if he was surprised about the reaction his comments got at his last presser and if he was happy that the defense rallied behind him)"I don't really care how people take things out of context. I know what I meant, and the people who are close to me know exactly what I meant by those comments. It was just the way I felt about going to war with my brothers. Honestly, if you need bulletin board material in this game to go play the game a different way, you're playing the game for the wrong reasons. I don't need anybody to say anything for me, because guess what? When that whistle blows, I'm going 100 miles an hour all game long, and regardless of what someone says, 'Ro' is going to play the same way."