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What's Browns coach Eric Mangini saying?

By Nate Ulrich Published: August 4, 2010

Browns coach Eric Mangini met with reporters after Wednesday morning's practice. Here's the transcript from the press conference:

Browns Head Coach Eric Mangini press conference 8-4-10

(Opening statement) -- “Good morning everybody. Welcome back.  Yesterday what we did is, we spent time in the morning going through the film from the previous evening in all three phases.  The guys did some conditioning, some strength training and some other things that are related to body maintenance to try to get some of the other lactic acid out and some of the low buildup that we have had to this point, kind of recover from that.  We got back together in the evening and went through and were able to look at the first five practices.  Coaches were able to go through and target specific areas from these earlier practices that we wanted to emphasize with the group, and I thought that was a really productive exercise.  After that we installed for this morning, walked through for this morning and guys got out at seven, a little bit earlier instead of eight to hopefully get some more sleep.  In terms of today’s practice, I thought there was pretty good tempo across the board.  I like the progress we are making in some of our speed-ball stuff that we work on at different points of practice.  Overall, I thought, a nice start to the day and I’m looking for a complete day.  Usually what happens, in any practice, is you get a little sloppier towards the end when you’re a little tired and you’re hot and that’s something that we are constantly working on, being able to finish the practice and then go to meetings, then finish the next practice, then finish the day.  We are always talking about the importance of that and our ability to do that.”

(On someone not reaching for a catchable ball at the end of practice being what he is talking about finishing the day) -- “You’re exactly right.  It’s those type of plays where it comes down to the ball was catchable, and now it’s a function of being able to look that in and finish that play.  It gets harder as the game goes on to do that, but you have got to practice that, you have got to be consistent with that.  Same thing with penalties if you see false starts or things like that and there’s more later in practice.  That’s a discipline thing that’s conscious. It gets harder too as you go through camp, because you have that much more information, you’re more fatigued from the multiple days of practicing.  It’s a skill like any other skill and we are constantly talking about it.”

(On the fine line between a good play by the defense and a bad play by the offense) -- “It depends on whether it was just a poor throw and a gimmie for the defense, or whether it was a function of the disguise, the technique or the guy got a good jump.  I thought the day before, Eric Wright had a really nice play on Evan Moore where there was a hitch that got thrown out there late that he was able to drive on.  I thought that was a really good interception on Eric’s part.  There are some interceptions where the defense may have confused the quarterback, which is a positive thing on one side of the ball and not so positive on the other side.  Both, however it plays out, are coachable and that’s what we end up doing with it.”

(On Dave Zastudil) -- “Dave should be back tomorrow.  He went to get rechecked by his doctor, which is something that is pretty common.”

(On Peyton Hillis ) -- “I think that Peyton is close to coming back and with a lot of these different things, taking our time with it to make sure that we are over the hump and when they come back, they are ready to go for the long term.”

(On if Peyton injured his leg) -- “Yeah.  He should be, hopefully, here soon.”

(On if he knows the extent of Chris Roberson’s injury in practice today) -- “No.  He’s got to go through tests and all of that stuff.”

(On Johnathan Haggerty) -- “He’s done well.  He continues to show up each day.  It’s one of those things where you don’t get quite as many reps as you did at different points and when you have those reps, you really have to maximize them.  He will get a lot of opportunities in preseason games and things, but he has got to keep popping off of the screen.”

(On Gerard Lawson’s two interceptions today) -- “Like we were talking about, it’s a way to show up on tape and be noticed.  I saw the picks happen out there, but I didn’t really get a sense of again, was it a poorly thrown ball?  Was it a really nice play by him?  You have just got to look at all of that stuff and look at it objectively, but it’s good.  Any two-pick day is a real good day.”

(On Lawson playing less last year than in 2008)- - “That happens sometimes because it depends on what spot you have on special teams and if there is someone better than you at that spot, then they are going to be on the 45.  If it’s close, and they have value or they have a specific role offensively or defensively that week, then it’s always going to go to that player that has the role offensively or defensively.  I’m not sure how it went in ’08, but that’s how the decisions get made each week.”

(On when he will start live tackling and if they will on Saturday) -- “No, we won’t do any Saturday.  We will do it in the preseason games.  We usually have a segment, actually this evening, in our goal line period so we will get plenty of work at it.”

(On how James Davis’ progression is going) -- “Good.  I showed a couple of clips of him yesterday when I was running through my review of the previous five days.  He had two really good blocks in the one-on-one pass rush drill where he came up one time. The linebacker was trying to shake him and he timed up his punch and was able to strike the guy and stalemate him.  Another time where the linebacker was going to bull rush him and try to just push him back and he fit it really nicely in triangle with his hat and hands.  Two excellent technique plays and two technique plays based on the type of rush that he was getting where last year at this time, I don’t think he would be able to recognize the difference between the rushes and how he had to play them. That’s an example of something that he has done and I’m excited to see him in the preseason games and see what he can do and how far he has come along over the course of the year.  Same thing with Chris Jennings, all of those guys. We should be able to get a look at them.”

(On if Davis’ character was strengthened by his injury last season) -- “Yes. I know Chansi Stuckey got hurt early in his rookie season and what we do with those guys is they go through the meetings and everything that the rest of the team goes through.  They are learning and they are accountable for the information. They are learning like everybody else is learning.  They may not be getting the physical reps, but they are going through that process and that helps.  It helps a lot to experience that, even if it may not be the active experience on the field, but to experience everything else associated with it. There are typically some nice jumps.  I thought that Chansi made a nice jump his next season.”

(On running two tight end sets in passing situations) -- “We ran a significant amount of two tight ends last season.  There are times where you run three tight ends and we worked on some of that today.  You can do a lot of different things depending on the skill sets of the guys, but there was an emphasis period yesterday where we worked on two tight ends, three tight ends because we see it defensively as well.  There are specific calls that you want in those sets, so that’s what our emphasis period is.  We will just focus on a certain thing, today was fourth down.  The day before was empty, whether it was lined up or motioned to.  You go through the practice, you do the progression, but there are certain areas where you target and you want to work on those.  That was one of them.”

(On the rapport between Jake Delhomme and Ben Watson) -- “It’s a positive thing and having a tight end that can stretch the field puts more pressure on the defense. You can’t shift coverage outside. You have to figure out how you want to deal with them. Do you want to cover with a safety, do you want to cover him with a linebacker, do you want to let it go to zone? There are a lot of questions that have to be answered when you are facing guys that can be productive from the tight end spot.”

(On having a recovery day so early in camp) -- “It’s a little earlier than I did it in New York in ‘08, but as you look at the data and track injury histories through training camp. I thought to move it up would be a good idea and really you don’t train these guys this way any other time during the year. There’s no other point in the year where you have this kind of load coming off of an inactive period and I just thought why not be more consistent with how we train them the other 11 months of the year.”

(On if he felt he couldn’t give them that day off last year) -- “I think what happens is you understand the team better and they understand you better and it was listed as a one-a-day which it could have been. As you look at it from my perspective, if guys are doing what is asked of them and we are making the progress that we need to make, this is what I wanted to do in the progression of installs, is to have the recovery day. I felt good about doing it so there’s growth on their part, growth across the board and I thought it was a good idea.”

(On the impact that Watson makes on the team) -- “He’s got a ton of experience. Our systems aren’t exactly alike but there’s plenty of carry over. He’s got familiarity. He’s a really good person and he’s a gifted athlete, so all those are pluses. Plus he’s a guy that’s been through a lot of winning, a lot of training camps, so that veteran experience helps in the locker room as well.”

(On how Ahtyba Rubin has been developing) -- “He’s been outstanding, he really has. He’s a big man, so he’s hard to move, but he plays with really good technique and his block recognition has gotten better over the course of the last year. When you’re that size and as strong as he is and recognizes blocks well, it’s hard to move you. He does an excellent job. I don’t know if you guys saw the other day, a little screen pass, he was running about 60 yards down the field, chasing the screen pass and that’s what you like about him as well. Some big guys may feel there’s about a 10-yard barrier or limit, but he finishes the plays and you like that. I like that a lot about him.”

(On if there was an offensive interference on Mike Adams on a pass to Brian Robiskie) -- “I was pretty far away from it so I haven’t see the play from that close and someone told me a long time ago, they pay a lot of money for TV contracts to see touchdowns so usually you aren’t going to get that if you are a defensive player. You have to wipe his hand off, re-establish your hand and you don’t want to have that type of separation. You have to close the distance so that they can’t use their hand to push off and if you don’t, odds are you aren’t going to get it and it’s your fault.”

(On whether he needs to let Robiskie know that he might get called for it in a game) -- “Again, I haven’t seen it. If it was offensive pass interference, we’ll coach them out of it because it doesn’t work. If it’s borderline, that’s officials’ discretion. Some call it more tightly than others. I don’t really know, I didn’t see it close enough to say.”

(On whether tight end was a weak link for them last year) -- “I think there were a lot of areas that we’re looking to improve and I think Ben (Watson) can improve that. I think when you saw Evan (Moore) come in against Pittsburgh and the things that he was able to do there in his first game. That changed the type of defense you are going to get the following weeks and it helped, it helped a lot and you have to have three great tight ends that can run and run block and go out and catch a lot of passes. Sometimes the skill sets are different, but it’s nice to have guys that can threaten from the interior part of the offense.”

(On whether Shaun Rogers is getting closer to getting on the field) -- “I don’t think we’re close right now. I think we’re still a little ways away.”

(On what Moore has done and how much further he needs to go) -- “He hasn’t played that much football. He’s done a nice job with the chances that he had, but there’s a ton that he can improve. He’s a young guy. He’s an inexperienced guy and we’ll keep working with him on every aspect, blocking, the nuances of route running and all those things. It was nice what he has done, but there’s a lot of work to be done.”

(On how D’Qwell Jackson has looked so far) -- “He’s looked good. D’Qwell’s looked good. He’s moving really well. He’s been close on a couple interceptions, maybe just a step off, but I think some of those we’ll convert as he just starts firing right away. I’m not saying he looks slow by any means, but it’ll keep getting better as he gets more and more of a feel getting back in there.”

(On why Montario Hardesty isn’t watching practice) -- “Because we want him to do things to help get him out quicker and each guy is on a different program. Believe me, he watches a lot of tape. He gets coached like everybody else. We’re just trying to be as productive as we can, to get him out as quickly as we can.”

(On what Matt Roth’s brought since joining the Browns) -- “Matt’s a beast. He is strong, he’s tough, he’s relentless and we had to deal with that in New York when he was in Miami and it was painful to deal with it. When he became available, it’s nice to have him and let other people deal with him. He doesn’t get fazed by anything, he is just going to attack the same way, play-in and play-out and it’s a nice trait and it’s contagious.”

(On if he expects to get any updates on possible suspensions for Shaun Rogers and Robaire Smith) -- “I haven’t heard anything on that.”

(On whether he expects anything tomorrow during the Commissioner’s visit) -- “I didn’t really go into it thinking the visit would clarify that. Whenever the decision is made, the decision is made. I’m not going to press him on it tomorrow, but it would be nice for him to come out though and see the things that we are doing and have a chance to talk to the players and talk to the coaches and spend some time with the fans. I think that’s great.”

(On how T.J. Ward has been doing with the ones) -- “He’s doing well. He made a really nice play the other day late in practice where he came up, made the tackle and stripped the ball out and that was just an awareness play. It’s been a point of emphasis that always is defensively, to sort of see him finish the play that way, which is what we want. I like that, I like that a lot. He does a nice job too with the information. He’s gotten more and more comfortable as we’ve gone on and I think working with the ones has helped him, because it’s forced him to accelerate the process.”

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