HEAD COACH JOHN HARBAUGH
(opening statement) "[I] appreciate everyone being here. That's the beginning, the start of the season. Now we're off and running. We have an opportunity to kind of see where we're at and we get an opportunity also to do it with a win. So, we're very happy about that. That's the way you want to open the season. With that, we know there's so many things we need to work on to get better at, and that's what we'll do starting on Monday. We're excited with the win. I'm proud of the way the guys played. All the guys, Zay [Flowers] [and] David Ojabo. I mean how about the pass rush bringing it. 'There was so much concern' right? He's been working hard, and a critical moment came up and he made that play. I'm just proud of him. So, I thought the whole team played as hard as they could, played as fast as they could, played as well as they could, and now our goal is just to keep getting better. So, what questions do you have?"
(on how hard it was finishing the game with the injuries continuing to pile up)"It would have been good to put it away. That's something we need to work on, try to put the game away a little sooner in terms of getting those first downs, things like that. So, with the injuries, just to kind of brief you on that, J.K. [Dobbins] has torn Achilles, unfortunately. So, that's going to end his season. I just feel bad for him. It's not the way we expected this to go, and he's worked really hard, but J.K is a strong-minded individual, and he has a big heart [and] a very large spirit. So, he's going to bounce back from this as well. The other injuries are really MRI-type injuries. We'll take a look at [with] Ronnie [Stanley], Marcus [Williams] and Tyler [Linderbaum]. We'll look at those three things tonight and tomorrow and the MRI and see where they're at, so, we just don't know about those yet."
(on how much he feels for RB J.K. Dobbins from a personal standpoint after suffering this injury today) "It's kind of crestfallen for him. So, it's so many guys you feel excited for [and] so many guys you say, 'We have to work on this.' And then J.K. [Dobbins] who has this unfortunate thing happen to him, and he was playing well. But really, we'll put our arms around him. He'll get into rehab, and he will be back. He's a young guy. So that's really it. But it's really hard for him."
(on RB Justice Hill and his production today)"Justice Hill? Yes. Justice stepped up. He played well. He's been playing … He's had heck of a camp. Justice has done a great job, [and] he's ready to go. Of course, Gus [Edwards] played well, so that was good to see. And then we have Melvin [Gordon], an opportunity comes up and we have our young guy Keaton [Mitchell] on the IR coming back after four weeks. So, those guys I'm sure will step up."
(on how frustrating it is to see major injuries happen after all was done to prevent them)"It's football. It just is. It's football, and everyone just does the best they can, and we certainly did and certainly will continue to – I'm sure there's injuries around the league. Then you know the league and the players association, I'm sure will continue to go to work and do the science and try to figure out wherever they can do offseason program-wise and things like that to keep improving in that area big-picture wise."
(on what went well on that first offensive drive after halftime) "That's a great question. We just operated well. We hit our assignments. We lined up. We had a little rhythm. Of course, Lamar [Jackson] made some great throws. The play action stuff is really working. I thought the guys ran some great routes, the deep out routes. Then Lamar made it happen on that drive, and that was the drive that stabilized us. We kind of had our feet set a little to start the second half, and we were in position to take the game over."
(on did you expect for WR Zay Flowers to have such a big impact on this game as a rookie) "Yes. I saw the plays. He was out there. He's going to play a lot, but I'm proud of him. He's going to tell you. He's going to get up here and tell you so many things he expects to even do better." (Coach John calls out to Zay Flowers: Right Zay?) "So, yes, but Zay, Lamar [Jackson], 'OBJ' [Odell Beckham Jr.], 'Bate' [Rashod Bateman] played so well. The whole receiving core did a great job. Nelson [Agholor] did a great job. So, I'm proud of all those guys. I don't want to forget my other two guys. So, the guys … Tylan [Wallace] went after it in special teams just a little bit."
(on if there was a specific game plan to take on the Texans blitzes) "We had a sense they were going to run the zero blitzes. Lamar [Jackson] did a great job with Todd [Monken] and with Tee [Martin] and with the guys and just kind of lined up. [They] had a plan for it, and we did a good job against them."
(on how he would assess the starters who didn't play in preseason games to how they played this game) "That's a big thing. I was talking to some of the guys. It's just different getting out there in a game – the game speed, operating, the crowd noise – all of it. It's something you get a sense for and that kind of goes in not playing in the preseason a little bit, but they handled it, and now we're off and running."
(on how he thought the offense looked)"I thought the offense played a winning football game. I'm proud of them. I'm really happy with what we did. I'm looking forward to where we can go from here."
(on if he ever thought about playing starters in preseason games with a new offensive system)"We'll have those conversations probably every year. Absolutely that comes to mind. That's something you have to take into consideration [and] just decide what you want to do."
(on what he thought about the cornerbacks today) "They held up well. [There were] no big plays. [They] had a couple of stop routes. Of course, C.J. [Stroud] throws those so well. They have good guys around those outside routes. I thought our guys were right there on them. They made a couple plays, but we made all of the tackles. I was happy with those guys."
(on if CB Rock Ya-Sin is working his way back)"Yes. He just started practicing a week ago. So, he'll be ready to go. He's on a good curve right now."
(on if RB J.K. Dobbins' injury was on contact)"I haven't seen it. I'm not sure."
QB LAMAR JACKSON
(on his thoughts regarding RB J.K. Dobbins' season-ending Achilles injury)"That's very unfortunate. I feel like J.K. has been busting his behind to get back on that field and just show the world what he's capable of and to help us out along the way. I spoke highly of him this offseason – just letting everybody know that we really need him. For him to go down with a season-ending injury, that's just very unfortunate for us – not just him but for all of us, because that's our brother."
(on if he feels there have been opportunities missed offensively because of injuries the last few seasons) "That's part of the game. Unfortunately, it happens, and in certain situations we don't need it to happen. [It's] not just us having injuries, but across the league people have injuries and it can happen any given moment [and] any given day while you're on that field."
(on if he expected to work through some rust in the game since most of the offensive starters did not play during the preseason) "To be honest, I didn't think that. Just having that little pass [his interception], the fumble – the B.S. interception I wasn't expecting that at all. Like you said about playing, I haven't played since November. [I] didn't play preseason, but I feel like it's the first game and things like that may come up – not just with us [but] throughout the league. But, we got the win [and we] just move forward [and] focus on practicing a little harder on the things we messed up on."
(on how he thought the offense looked and how he played)"I feel like we had our up-and-down moments. You can see where my ceiling would be, and then some moments, it's like, 'What were we just doing? What are we doing questioning ourselves out there?' Like I said, it's the first game – a little hiccup [the] first time we're with each other on that field. I feel like the sky's the limit though."
(on how pleased he was to get WR Zay Flowers involved in the offense with the plays he made in the game) "I already knew what Zay was capable of, and he showed it himself – making guys miss and running great routes, catching the ball [and] getting up the field, getting yards after the catch. We want to get everybody involved. We have a lot of great guys on that field [and] in our receiving room. I feel like we're on to something special here."
(on what it was like to have the ability to make more checks and calls at the line of scrimmage in the game) "We actually made some checks and made some calls out there on the field. Sometimes it went our way, sometimes it didn't, but that's where practice comes in at. We're going to work on that Tuesday, Wednesday, all the way up to Friday."
DT JUSTIN MADUBUIKE
(On the defensive effort today) "Defensive effort today was outstanding. We were firing off the ball, made some mistakes, some things we have to clean up, but overall, great. We got the win; it is very hard to win in the league. We're going to look over the film today, tomorrow and get ready for Cincinnati."
(On the pass rush effort today) "Yeah, five sacks. That was our goal, actually. We got that confidence back. [There is a] Lot of work to be done. There were a lot of times we got there, but [C.J. Stroud] got it off, but we bothered him. We really could have gotten more. So, just back to work. That's what we do."
(On the play of CB Ronald Darby and DB Brandon Stephens)"[Brandon] Stephens was a head-buster out there. He was knocking people out there. [Ronald] Darby was playing coverage really well, made a couple of plays on the ball. I'm glad he's my teammate. He's playing great ball. He's not giving up anything guaranteed."
(On two, fourth-down stops today)"Great. Those are the plays that test your will as a defense. So, the fact that we got two fourth-down stops show our will. We are the Ravens defense, and at the end of the day, this is what we do. We practice hard, play hard and we just have to keep doing these types of things. There are a few things we need to clean up and we will.
(On the play of OLB David Ojabo)"My brother. My dog. What a great play today, that sack fumble. So proud of him. Lots of criticism, lot of he said she said and a lot of outside noise coming his way. He stayed hungry, and he's performing. He stayed focused, he stayed humble, and he stayed hungry. He has a very, very bright future in this league."
WR ZAY FLOWERS
(on what he thought of his first NFL action) "I remember I was up here last time [and] I told you all that I'll get used to it. I said something like, 'I'll get used to the speed of it,' and today it slowed down for me, and it was better."
(on how pleased he was to be able to make plays and be heavily involved in the offense) "Honestly, I was just pleased to get some catches. In my head, I was like, 'Two catches. I'll be good with that [for my] first game.' [We] got the win. As long as we win, I was alright."
(on if it ever dawned on him that he could be more involved in the offense since TE Mark Andrews was out) "Honestly, I didn't even know he wasn't playing. I saw him practicing the whole week, then he just didn't even warm up today. I don't know. Honestly, I was just [saying to myself], 'Go out there and play.'"
(on if he thinks the Ravens are committed to using him in many different ways like he was at Boston College)"I feel like they use us in every way; that's for all receivers. We all [can] play different positions. We all can play every position. We all can run every route. There's no limit to our receiver room."
(on the loss of RB J.K. Dobbins after sustaining a season-ending injury) "It's going to be a big loss, because everybody knows J.K [Dobbins] can really run the ball. He was a big part of the offense and our run game, so losing him can be a big part, but I feel like Justice [Hill] and Gus [Edwards] are going to step up."
(on if there was anything said in the locker room at halftime that inspired the team's fast start offensively in the third quarter after a slow first half) "We knew we had to move the ball if we wanted to win. We knew we were capable of moving the ball. We had to get everything together. It was our first game, the first time running the offense in a game, so we just had to get used to playing on the field with each other and just going."
(on if he expects the offense to get smoother in a hurry now that the starters are playing together) "Oh, absolutely. I feel like next game, it'll be way better. [The] operation will be smoother. Everybody will be way more comfortable with each other."
(on if he thinks he will have plenty of opportunities if QB Lamar Jackson has the run-pass option to throw the ball to him since defenses will be keyed in on stopping the run) "Absolutely, because I feel like we have one of the best run games in the NFL. You always have to worry about stopping that first and then you have to worry about stopping Lamar [Jackson]. That's just going to get us open even more, and when Mark [Andrews] comes back it's going to get even scarier."
ILB PATRICK QUEEN
(on how he feels when people question the Ravens' pass rush)"The four guys that we have up front, when we rotate them in, each guy can get the job done. Whenever they call my number, I'm just another piece of that four-man rush. Any time they call my number, I'm just happy to go in there [and] help my team out."
(on if the game approach was any different with an inexperienced quarterback) "No. Our game plan is mostly the same every week. We just have so many different things that we run. It's just whatever we're feeling comfortable with at the time. That guy [C.J. Stroud], he's going to be a great quarterback coming up. It's just tough coming up here Week One against us as a rookie. So, that's what we do."
(on how difficult it was to see a teammate like RB J.K. Dobbins go down with an injury)"Obviously, the news came out about him. I texted him. That guy is a good brother of mine. It hurts to see that type of stuff happen to somebody so good. [He's] just a good person [and] good athlete. Obviously, you have to just keep going on, it's just tough. I just ask that everybody prays for him, pray for his mental [state], prayers for Marcus [Williams], pray for those guys. Stuff like that, that's why he went in the situation that he went. It's just tough. It just hurts, honestly. It hurts a lot."
(on how pleased he was that the defense came out in the second half)"We're not pleased. We're not pleased. A lot of the stuff they got, we gave up. We weren't communicating how we needed to be. We weren't lined up fast enough. We weren't in our spots. Honestly, we should have dominated them even more than we did, but that just starts at practice. We just have to get better. We just have to communicate better, line up faster, communicate faster [and] communicate better. Everyone has to be on the same page, so whatever we have to do to make that happen, that's what we're going to do."
(on how he thinks the defensive line responded to a lot of the questions about how they were going to perform this season) "The guys know what they can do. We know what we can do, they know what we can do and that's all that matters. We're confident with the people that we have. That's why we're just letting them go, letting them pass rush, four-man rush [and] go after the quarterback. We know what those guys can do, they know what they can do, and that's all that matters."
(on if he takes pride with being an inside linebacker and setting the tone for the defense with ILB Roquan Smith) "Definitely. I think when you look [at the] big picture, the organization, who was here, what they did and the standard that they set, you have to look at how do you want to be as an individual? Do you want to be great, or do you just want to be standard? I know 'Ro' [Roquan Smith] wants to be great, and he's already headed there. I know I want to be great, and I'm already headed there. At the end of the day, when we come in [and] we still step foot at the facility and on the field, it's all focus on getting better."
RB JUSTICE HILL
(On the injury to RB J.K. Dobbins) "I feel so bad for him. All the work that it takes to get back to this point – a lot of work – and my dog goes down. It's just so unfortunate."
(On his two touchdowns today) "For me, it's exciting. It took a lot of work to get this. We didn't particularly run the ball well today as a unit, but we made plays when we had to. Somehow, we got the win and that's the most important thing."
(On the offense's slow start today) "You have to work out the kinks. This was our first real game action together, and yes, the first half was a little up and down. We ran better in the second half. If we don't shoot ourselves in the foot, we will be fine."
(On the two touchdown drives in the first quarter) "We just came out and executed. We just focused on our plays, and if we continue to do that, no one is stopping us. Those drives in the third quarter, we came out and smoked them. That's what we need to continue to do: practice, work hard, and make it pay off in the game."
(On his own personal journey) "Everybody's got a journey. Everybody's got a story. Every single one of us. We all have testimony. I pray to God and I'm glad I'm still here healthy and standing on two feet. That's all I can ask for and I'm so blessed. At the same time, it's so unfortunate for J.K. [Dobbins]. You just hate to see it."
OLB DAVID OJABO
(On today's defensive performance) "Definitely pleased. We just went out there and did our job, attacking the quarterback. And we will see what we can do as the season goes on."
(On the chatter about the pass rush before the season) "Man, coming into the season we know how to do our job. There's always going to be question marks, but we are not going to worry about outside noise. We know what we have in the room, we know what we have in this defense. All we have to do is execute"
(On five different players getting sacks)"That's the beauty of [defensive coordinator Mike] Macdonald's game plan. He puts all of us in great position to win and make plays and put on a showcase."
(On his sack and strip) "It felt good. I always say, 'Don't worry about the quarterback, just attack the ball.' The whole point is to score points and put the offense in a good position."
(On the injury to RB J.K. Dobbins) "You have to trust God. God is the greatest, God has a plan for all of us. Prayers go out to J.K. [Dobbins]. God has a plan for him."
(On how he processes injuries that happen in the NFL) "Next play, next man up. This is bigger than us. We play for the Ravens, a legendary defense. Next man up. A lot of us went down today and I'll be checking up on my teammates. We all support each other 100%. We just have to stay safe when we can and support each other."
WR ODELL BECKHAM JR.
(on how awesome it felt to get back on the field today)"It's truly a blessing. It's easier to come into the game and say, 'No matter what happens, as long as you're still healthy and we win, I'm going to have a smile on my face.' And obviously, I do have a smile on my face, but the competitor in me, the strive for greatness – all of those things – is not necessarily happy with my performance so much today. But it's so not about me. It's been a long journey, as I've always just said. I was working that hard just to get back on the field, and even if I was to catch one football a game, I just feel like I couldn't go out that way to end my career. But to see Rashod Bateman, who's come back from injuries, to see Zay [Flowers], for his first game, just do the things that we know he's capable of doing … It's hard to come by wins in the NFL, so it's all smiles. It's back to the drawing board. We've got to start thinking about the next one right now. And yes, man, I just feel blessed to be able to go back out there again."
(on what his emotions were like when taking the field today)"It was just what I was waiting for. Not to say I didn't expect it, but it felt amazing. I felt the love, and that's what I want to give back to this place. I want to give my everything. That's why when I came out with the quote talking about, 'Oh, this is my last.' No, I mean, I'm going to play like it's my last – like this is my last route I can run, my last pass I could catch. I want to give that effort to this place – this organization. So, it's truly special to be able to go out there and win, and I'm happy."
(on having his son, Zydn, at the game)"You know, it's funny how God works. I [was] injured last year, and if I would have come back, my son [Zydn] would have only been five, six, seven months, [an age] when he's not really able to watch a football game. And now, he's going on close to two years [old]. He's going on close to two years [old], so he really knows what's going on. He sees football out there, [and] he's like, 'Dada.' So, it was truly special to be able to see him before the game, get that love. And he's the reason that I keep going. He's the reason that I'm still doing it. Pamper cost a lot; toys cost a lot, so I've got to keep hustling, man. (laughter) So, it's just truly a blessing to be able to still play out my dream and play the game that I sacrificed any other sport or my entire life for."
(on if today was a glimpse of what this offense can be)"Yes, and the funny thing about it is we're going to go watch the film, and I don't think too many people are going to be happy. [There were] a lot of little mistakes [and] a lot of things that in a bigger game another team might take advantage of. So, there are a lot of things we need to do. [We'll] get back to the drawing board. But it's still to be able to see the 'W' in an ugly win. So, there are a lot of things we can improve on. I'm excited about that."
(on the loss of RB J.K. Dobbins to a season-ending torn Achilles)"Yes, you just made my stomach hurt again. It's the ugly part of this game. And these people are your brothers; you [experience] blood, sweat and tears with them. It's a sick feeling that I have over me just to know that that's what happened. So, my prayers go out to him [J.K. Dobbins] and his family. I texted him. I said, 'Wherever you need me, whatever you need from me, I'm there at the drop of a dime.' That question just made me very … It doesn't feel good, losing J.K."
(on how the offense proceeds without RB J.K. Dobbins)"It's the same across the board. It's always been that next-man-up mentality, and it sucks to say, because this is truly your brother. But we have no choice but to play for him [J.K. Dobbins]. Those running backs have no choice but to play for him, to run for him and just find a way to make him proud. So, my prayers go out to him and his family. J.K., you know we love you."
(on if he feels like today's performance from the wide receivers was kind of like an appetizer for what's to come moving forward)"It was an undercooked appetizer. Do you know what I mean? (laughter)It wasn't necessarily well … None of us want it. But for Zay [Flowers] to come out … This is his first game, [and] like I said earlier, to see him do the things that we know he's capable of doing … 'Bate' [Rashod Bateman], who came back from fighting injuries and a surgery, and just to be able to see him out there playing with confidence … All of our guys … Like, we all played hard in our room. There were mistakes, [and] there were things that we can get better at and correct and do 'this' and 'that.' Like I said, it was an ugly win, but it's hard to come by 'dubs' in this league. And for me, personally, it's not the day that I was expecting to have, but I feel like that's how God works. So, you've just got to know that [and] trust in his plan [and] his process. I came out [of] the game healthy, so that's a very good feeling. I get to go home, see my son, my family and get ready for next week."
(on if it sometimes takes time for an offense to get going)"Yes, it just … It was an ugly day. [There were] a lot of mistakes across the board. I made mistakes. But we've got great coaches in that room – Coach 'Dub' [assistant wide receivers coach Keith Williams] and 'G-Lew' [wide receivers coach Greg Lewis] – and these guys are going to coach us up hard, and we're going to watch the film. Everybody is a man in that room; we can take the criticism. That's the only way to get better. So, I know [that] I messed up on a lot of things. It's the first game; it's a long season. I don't think anybody [has] won a Super Bowl in Week One. So, we've got a lot of work ahead of us."
(on if there is a sense of the offense ramping up after not playing together)"I mean, I guess you just relayed it to life; you never know how things are going to go. And at the end of the day, we can control certain things, and today we didn't do that, but we were fortunate to get the win. You've just got to get better, just got to lock, just correct your mistakes – I'm happy that it didn't cost us today – and get it rolling. Like I said, I don't think anybody has ever won a Super Bowl in Week One. So, we've got a lot of room for improvement."