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What's Browns coach Eric Mangini saying?

By Nate Ulrich Published: August 26, 2010

Browns coach Eric Mangini met with reporters Thursday morning. Here is a transcript from the press conference:

Browns Head Coach Eric Mangini press conference 8-26-10

(Opening statement) -- “Good morning everybody.  A couple updates here this morning.  Montario (Hardesty) will practice today.  Coye Fancies, he’s off PUP, he will practice today.  In terms of their availability for the game, I’d say questionable, but we will just see how it goes today.  I’d say questionable with the arrow pointing down.  John (St. Clair) is not back.  I’ve been in contact with him and will remain in contact with him, but he will not be out there this afternoon.  In terms of what we are doing here, it’s our typical Friday practice, our third day in a week practice.  That entails reviewing first, second and third down, installing the red zone, goal line reviewing, a little more emphasis on short yardage and blitzes and some other emphasis things that we have put in and re-cover on Friday.  It’s review with new install going in red zone, goal line and some new blitzes and new short yardage.”

(On if they have started to prepare for Tampa Bay) -- “Yes, we did work in the offseason, so we do that for any new opponent and we go back and look at our divisional opponents as well.  As the preseason tape comes in, you start looking at that to focus in a little bit more on the starters, but you watch the whole game to see scheme consistency with the understanding that you can get anything in the first game, you don’t know necessarily what’s been worked on that hasn’t been put in.  Familiarize yourself with the new players, what their roles are.  It’s ongoing.  It starts in the offseason, it revs up in the preseason and the first game of the season, there’s always that element of who knows what you are going to get.”

(On if they have shown the players film of Tampa Bay yet) -- “Different guys will kind of do the same thing that the coaches do and watch a little bit each week, put a half hour to 45 minutes in the bank on something like that.  It doesn’t take away from the rest of their preparation, it just gives you a foundation going in to that first, second and third week.”

(On if Hardesty will be limited in practice today) -- “He will be at practice, but it will be a limited participation practice.  That’s typical, that’s like the next step of coming back.”

(On how concerned he is with Hardesty’s durability) -- “This wasn’t something that was a pre-existing condition. It was just one of those things that happened.  I really believe that Montario is a tough kid, a durable kid and sometimes you get setbacks.  I’m excited to have him back out there.”

(On if there is a scenario where both James Davis and Chris Jennings could make the roster and if special teams will come into play) -- “Really that will be the key factor is special teams.  If you’re not the starter or if you’re not a starter in a package, in order to make the team you have to add value on special teams.  In order to get to the 45, you definitely have to have value on special teams.  That’s a big part of how guys are being evaluated.  Guys can’t forget too, it’s not just Jennings and J.D., they’re competing against everybody, everybody who is kind of in that same area.”

(On how Davis is looking on special teams) -- “I think he’s looked better than last season at this time, so that’s encouraging.  I think he’s still got some things that have to improve, but I like some of the progress that I’ve seen.  Same thing with Chris.  Often times these guys haven’t played special teams at all in college or if they did, it was when they were freshman, so it’s getting back in to that feel.  We have had different guys over time who when they first started on special teams, you think, ‘Oh my God, they have no chance.’  Then the light goes on and they get it and end up becoming core guys and really prolonging their career.  Jerricho Cotchery to me is a great story because he made the team in New York on special teams and then he got a chance to play in 2006 and had, I think, 89 catches.  He never would have gotten that shot had he not done all of the good things that he did on special teams.”

(On if he has seen enough of Tony Pashos to know what kind of player he is) -- “No, I think you have got to see him play.  He hasn’t been out there very much at all, so he has got to play.  He will play this weekend and that will provide a lot more information.”

(On if Hardesty is bigger than Jerome Harrison, faster than Peyton Hillis and what else he brings to the table) -- “Well, A is true, he is bigger than Harrison.  B, we haven’t raced those two guys with him and Hillis.  I think it’s just different approaches.  He has a different style than Peyton, he has a different style than Jerome and with those three guys, it’s figuring out where can they contribute the most?  Once you define that, then it’s also that they have to go in and function effectively in the other packages.  What you don’t want to do is every time you have Jerome out there, you run just these plays.  You want to be able to work him into the other packages and have him run those plays well, same thing with Peyton and the same thing with Montario.  Sometimes you can get into when you have a big back and a small back, you put the big back in to run and the small back in to pass, everybody in the stadium knows what you’re doing.  You have got to balance those things off.”

(On if Hardesty is doubtful for Saturday) -- “I’d say it’s questionable with the arrow pointing down.  We have got to see what he looks like today.”

(On if Hardesty could show him something in practice today to change his mind for Saturday) -- “It’s just how well he operates, how good he feels tomorrow, this afternoon and you have got to talk to the trainer and the doctor.  There are a lot of things that you have to go through and gather information on before you make that decision, but it’s a really positive step.”

(On if there is a gap between Hardesty as a willing blocker and Hardesty as an effective blocker) -- “I think a lot of times with blocking and special teams, the willing part is the most important part because you can teach the effective part.  I didn’t feel that in the exposure that we had without pads with Montario, I thought his technique was good.  That would lead you to think that he should be an effective blocker.  Now we haven’t done it very much with pads, so we have got to see what happens there.”

(On if he thinks Hillis is a very effective blocker) -- “I think he’s been pretty effective with the chances that he has.  On that fourth down play to Josh (Cribbs), he made a really nice adjustment.  The nose kind of slipped off Alex (Mack) and was starting to penetrate in the pocket and he came over and saved the play.  It’s that type of stuff that you really like.  It’s not just the, ‘Okay, I have the WILL.  I block the WILL.’  It’s also understanding, ‘This is broken down, I need to save this.”  It’s kind of a deeper level of understanding of the blocking scheme.  That was one really encouraging play.”

(On how Coye Francies fits into the secondary) -- “I don’t know that answer right now.  What can you do on special teams and then what’s your role?  Can you be effective as the money player, the inside player that covers the tight end types or the star which covers the slot receiver or are you more of an outside guy?  We had a decent look at him last year.  We have a lot more information obviously than before we drafted him.  Typically those guys make a jump in the second year and we haven’t been able to evaluate that as much.  I thought he did some nice things in OTAs, some positive things from where he was.  The tough thing with Coye’s situation is the time to evaluate has been compressed dramatically.  You’re fighting time.”

(On if Kaluka Maiava and David Veikune are ready to make a jump in their second year) -- “In a lot of ways, I thought that David was very similar to Brian (Robiskie) in terms of offensive and defensive development.  He had really shown a much better mastery of the scheme, of what he had to do and had made a lot of progress.  He missed some time here throughout camp, which you never want that to happen with a guy that’s developing.  There have been a lot of positive signs. He made a tackle or two last week on special teams, which was a good thing to see.  With Kaluka, he got a lot of playing time last year.  He did a nice job on special teams and my expectation is that he takes another jump.  He was very effective at USC as a special teams player.  He was special teams player of the year, I think twice.  He was an underrated guy in that group of linebackers that came out and they had so many of them that came out that year, he was almost an afterthought, but I thought he was a big part of why that defense was effective.  My expectation for him is a significant jump.  He is a smart kid and he is an inherently tough kid.  He’s not your typical size, but if he can carve out a third and fourth down role, it could be a really good role for us.”

(On if he could potentially see Sheldon Brown playing safety due to the development of Joe Haden) -- “No, not really because I think Sheldon has done a nice job at corner.  I like the things that T.J. (Ward) has done at safety and Abe (Elam).  Mike Adams, I thought he did a really good job as well last year when he played safety.  We’ve worked Mike a lot at corner, not necessarily because he is going to play solely at corner, but because we wanted to give him reps at that skill set.  We felt like he had a better base at safety, so let’s go work on this other area for versatility purposes.  I really like what Sheldon is doing at corner and Joe is going to have to, for that to even be a thought, really make a dramatic push.”

(On if James Davis has been making explosive runs in camp like he did last year) -- “He’s looked, I’d say similar.  I know he hasn’t had the long runs, but I think he’s looked similar to how he looked last year.  Now he will get a lot more chances I’d say in the Chicago game than he will necessarily this week.  He will get some chances this week, but I think in Chicago he will really get a chance to make a strong argument.  I think his blocking has improved, which is an area that we targeted in the offseason.”

(On if there is a number of running backs he has in mind that he would like to have on the final roster) -- “I’ve had two, I’ve had more.  That’s why we have that miscellaneous category on the chart because maybe it’s the fourth tight end, maybe it’s the fourth running back, maybe it’s the sixth safety, you keep those open.  You have certain things slotted by position, then you keep another area open because that’s the next best guy.”

(On who might be the backup center) -- “(Billy) Yates has played there quite a bit and Shawn (Lauvao) had played there quite a bit.  Again with Shawn not being here for a week, it was harder to follow the rep progression that we had hoped to follow, but he has done a nice job throughout camp and so has Billy.  Pat Murray has worked there as well.”

(On if he would like to see Lauvao play center in these upcoming preseason games) -- “Again, it’s something that we have talked about.  Just the way it’s gone with the offensive linemen with different guys having to leave, that’s made it a little bit harder including with Shawn having to take some time.  We had had sort of one plan going in to camp as to the rep progression and that’s had to adjust.  It has been something that we have talked about, it’s just when we will be able to get to it.”

(On how the defense would be affected if Shaun Rogers started the season on the PUP list) -- “We want him back obviously, but he was gone for quite a few weeks last year and he has been gone for quite a few weeks this year so far.  The positive, not that you’re necessarily looking for the positive in an injury, but it has allowed (Ahtyba) Rubin to get more reps and develop there.  We are looking forward to getting him back in the mix.”

(On if they have contacted the league about whether or not Rogers or Robaire Smith will be disciplined) -- “You get to talk to Mike (Holmgren) this afternoon.  You can ask him.  That’s not my area anymore.”

(On his impressions of Travis Ivey) -- “Big.  He’s big.  We liked some things about him in college.  We have really only had actually a little over 24 hours with him.  He seems to be proactive in terms of trying to get the information and outside the typical slated times.  We will see this weekend.  I don’t know a ton of about him, just more my college exposure and my limited exposure here.”

(On if Ivey if the only potential backup nose tackle if Rogers is on the PUP list) -- “No, different guys have played it.  Believe it or not, Kenyon (Coleman) has played nose before.  Robaire has played nose before, he has worked in there at different points.  We would build all of those things in, kind of like the o-line.  It’s not necessarily what you would like to do, but they have done it and they understand the technique and how to operate.  We have got Swanson (Miller), who has worked in there.  We will just have to see how it goes.”

(On how much Hardesty will be expected to contribute during the season having limited preseason exposure) -- “If we are taking him and he’s on the 45, then he is expected to contribute and play and be effective.  Otherwise, he won’t be on the 45.  If he’s going, he will have a role and we will feel comfortable that he can fill that role and he will feel comfortable that he can fill that role.  We won’t take him just to get his letter early (joking).”

(On if Rubin can be a good long-term starting nose tackle) -- “Rubin can be a good, long-term starting nose.  He is stout, he plays with good technique, he has got a high motor.  Sometimes you lose track of a motor with a guy that big, he’s running all of the time.  He may not pop off of the screen, but he’s running.  I like him.  I like his growth, I like his professionalism.  He’s got a chance to be a good long-term nose.”

(On if Rubin was on his draft board when he was with the Jets) -- “I’m going to say yes.  We had him really high, we just couldn’t get to him (joking).  I don’t remember where he was on the board to tell you the truth.  I know we had him on the board, as far as you know and as far as I know, but I don’t know where we had him on the board.”

(On if Rubin is one of those guys that slipped down in the draft, but became a good player) -- “Yes, that happens.  It’s like Cribbs.  How does Cribbs become Cribbs?  It’s an inexact science and everybody tries to make it a science, but it’s human beings and you don’t know.  Time, money, more responsibility, how is it all going to affect a 22-23 year old kid?”


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