☰ Menu
Cleveland Browns

What's Browns coach Eric Mangini saying?

By Nate Ulrich Published: December 8, 2010

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

Browns Head Coach Eric Mangini press conference 12-8-10

(Opening statement) -- “Good morning everybody.  Today the guys that will be out are (Eric) Barton and Titus (Brown).  Barton hasn’t been able to go on Wednesday the last couple of weeks but him, Titus and Scott (Fujita).  Offensively, it will be Colt (McCoy) and Evan Moore will be the group.  I’m pretty optimistic with all those guys, being able to do something this week with the exception of Scott.  I think he’s still going to be plugging along here.  As we know we’ve just got to see how the week unfolds.  Caught up on some of the Miami tape this morning.  The players of the game were Ben Watson on offense, Joe Haden on defense, Mike Adams on special teams and Travis Ivey was our practice player of the week.  You guys saw that Reggie (Hodges) got AFC Special Teams Player of the Week so all positive.  Went through the pluses and minuses from the game, the corrections of the game and made sure we covered that then moved right into Buffalo.

“In looking at Buffalo, I’d say the thing that stands out is they’re resilient.  They play everybody tough, took Baltimore into overtime, took Pittsburgh into overtime had great chances in both those games, took Kansas City into overtime.  Put up a lot of points against Cincinnati and New England and they’re resilient, they fight through every game.  They’ve played one of the toughest schedules in the NFL.  I really like what they’ve done in terms of penalties, they’re fifth lowest which shows their discipline.  There are problems in all three phases like there is each week.  I think that defensively with Kyle Williams and Marcus Stroud, they’re two physical guys up front.  Chris Kelsay, seen him for a while, high motor, tough, causes problems in the running game and passing game.  With Paul Posluszny, he’s fourth in the NFL now in tackles and he makes plays all over the field.  Donte Whitner is a safety that I liked coming out of the draft and I’ve liked what he’s done in pro football.  He makes a ton of tackles and does a good job of not letting the runs extend for more than they should go for.  Offensively, I’ve really liked watching Ryan Fitzpatrick. I think that he’s made a ton of plays and his completion percentage, his quarterback rating, there’s been times where he hasn’t had a lot of time and he’s made something happen.  He hangs in the pocket and throws a very accurate ball.  He’s able to get out of the pocket and scramble or scramble to throw and he’s made plays there.  I really think he’s done an outstanding job and he runs the offense well.  I think when you look at a guy like Steve Johnson, there’s a guy who his first two seasons only had 12 catches now he’s at 61, he’s really emerged.  Lee Evans a guy that’s caused problems, caused problems year in and year out when I was in the AFC East and still causes problems.  With Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller, these are both guys that can get the yards that are there but then they can generate yards either on the perimeter with cutback runs that some other guys can’t.  On special teams, Spiller’s done a nice job both on kickoff and punt return, and Leodis McKelvin is another guy I really liked in the draft, doing a good job at corner but also one of the things that was really attractive about him was the big plays that he can make and he almost went the distance against Pittsburgh in that first kickoff there in overtime and just got tripped up at the end and he’s made plays like that since he’s come in the league.”

(On if there is any more clarity on Colt McCoy’s return) -- “I think we have a shot for him practicing this week.  I think that’s a possibility, I wouldn’t say it’s a slam dunk but I would say it’s a possibility.”

(On if they are waiting for McCoy to be back to 100 percent to play him again) -- “I think he did some good work here yesterday but that’s all very controlled, it’s with the trainers, things like that so it’s different when you’re calling the play, when you’re thinking about reading the coverage, thinking about all those things and just letting your body react.  That’s really the next step and that remains to be seen.”

(On if there were missed run opportunities in Miami or if they played really well) -- “They’re stout, they’re stout up front.  Paul Soliai I think is an outstanding nose tackle.  He made plays in the middle of the defense and he made some chase plays that were really impressive.  Kendall Langford I think he’s an excellent left end where he plays quite a bit.  They move around some but he’s another guy that’s very strong, very good at controlling blocks.  Yeremiah Bell, outstanding run support.  I’d say as a defense, they have a real strength in not allowing very much run after the catch.  You saw Peyton (Hillis) a couple of times out in space whether it was on receptions or running the ball.  There’s very few missed tackles by that group and I think that’s one of the things that helps them a lot and there weren’t a lot of yards after catch or after contact.”

(On if the Bills play that way) -- “I think there are some similarities in the sense that they got two big, physical guys in the middle.  You got high motor ends and Chris Kelsey, like I said, I’ve seen for a long time, he’s a good player.  Paul Posluszny, he’s sideline to sideline in terms of tackles and the volume of tackles that he makes are pretty extensive and Donte Whitner he’s a very effective box safety.  We’ve talked about box safeties a lot and I think that has a big affect on the running game.  We have to do a good job with being able to handle those guys, being able to anchor and sustain the blocks and then making sure you get a hat for a hat in the running game, you’ve got somebody on everybody each time.  When you have fast flow linebackers or guys as fluid as Polsluszny that sometimes gets harder.”

(On why Reggie Hodges is doing better this year than any other year in his career) -- “I think it comes down to experience, comfort level.  He’s a very talented guy but like any job you go into as he’s gotten more time, as he’s gotten more comfortable in the position I think that’s been a big part of his improvement, that experience and his comfort level punting in games.  I remember when he worked out and I remember the first game he punted for us and all those things, there’s been a real journey for him and now there’s some stability in that position for him.”

(On if he was with the Jets when he worked Hodges out) -- “Yes, that initial time, and then signing him and then his first opportunities there.  A lot of kickers  and punters will move around a little bit before they find a home and often times when they find a home and they get comfortable, you can really see their potential.”

(On the challenges in the next four games particularly for Hodges) -- “It’s going to be different than Miami I can tell you that in terms of weather. It is a challenge.  It will be a challenge for him. It will be a challenge for Phil (Dawson) because the air temperature affects how far the ball goes, the wind will affect it and those are challenges.  The other thing is it’s challenging for the returners too trying to judge those balls and sometimes you get bounces you wouldn’t get under normal conditions because a guy would field it but it kind of cuts both ways there.”

(On if it is tougher than people realize to be the holder) -- “Yes, that’s really tough because you’ve got to get the spot, you’ve got to catch the ball, you’ve got to place the ball, you’ve got to make sure the laces are away and they’re coming.  Especially, those edge guys you can see most PAT or field goal blocks, the edge guys are missing the ball by a split second.  If you can’t get it and set it quickly and do it effectively one, the kicks not going to be right because it’s not set correctly, and two, the pressure is going to come and cause some problems.”

(On their 6-3 game against Buffalo last year) -- “Instant classic (joking).”

(On if any other punter has made as big an impact as Dave Zastudil did against Buffalo last year) -- “I haven’t really looked at it like that Tony (Grossi), but it would be hard to just based on those numbers.  I don’t want to slight any past punters who’ve had outstanding games I think those numbers are about as good as it gets.”

(On if he thinks the team will benefit from the kind of conditions they could be playing in the next few weeks) -- “I love this weather, this is exactly what you’d expect in Cleveland and the teams we’re going to play and the team’s ability to handle the weather conditions.  The extreme cold, the wind, the snow, all those things, to be able to run the ball and stop the run, to be disciplined with a lot of distractions from a climate perspective, that’s important.  There should be a real home field advantage for us whenever we play in Cleveland and those weather conditions are like that.  It just happens that we have four games in a row here where we’ll have that same type of weather, so I’m looking for the guys to continue improve on all the stuff that we’ve talked about and then to be able to operate in these conditions at a high level.”

(On Alex Mack this year compared to how he played last year as a rookie) -- “I thought towards the end of the year last year he had really turned the corner from the rookie component of the rookie season.  I feel like he’s picked up where he left off at the end of last year this season and has continued to improve.  Alex is a guy who is very bright, helps significantly with the calls, the communication things like that.  He’s a high motor center on screens and down the field blocks and finishing blocks, I really like that about him.  He’s challenged each week, we always talk about the left tackle being forced to deal with an elite pass rusher, Alex is usually forced to deal with a mountain.  Each week he’s got some sort of mountain in front of him and being able to control those guys, he’s continued to improve there.  He was tested last week, that guy was pretty good he is pretty good and there will be others here as we go.  This week will be the same thing.”

(On Mack was worth where they drafted him) -- “I would say unequivocally yes.  Could of drafted him higher.”

(On if New England’s victory over the New York Jets last week makes Cleveland’s win over New England any more impressive) -- “I would have like to have beaten them both, that would’ve been the best situation.  They’re good and when Tom (Brady) is playing the way he does, they get better as the season goes on.  They historically have, they continue to do that year in and year out.  It is only one game, so I’m sure both teams are moving on.  I haven’t really put it in that context though Mary Kay (Cabot).”

(On his reaction to the news that Josh McDaniels got fired in Denver) -- “It’s never a fun thing to see.  He’s a guy that I’ve known for a long time and I’ve been in that spot.  I know how hard Josh worked, I know how smart he is and I know him personally.  It’s never great to see that from anybody.  You get to know a lot of head coaches around the league, Josh I just happen to know better.  You don’t like to see that, you know how much work everybody puts into it.”

(On if he will call and talk to McDaniels) -- “In going through the experience, I’ll give the dust a little time to settle and then I’ll definitely give him a call and talk to him and see if there is any way I can help.”

(On if he expects that Josh Cribbs will be available to get some snaps on offense this weekend) -- “We are another week further out, so I would expect that.”

(On when he really knew he had something special in Joe Haden from seeing him play) -- “He had a lot of things that were going to translate well into pro football.  The thing that’s underrated a lot of times is his ability to tackle.  From a corner, that’s often an underrated skill and it played a big part in the game this past weekend.  I like his approach, his energy and those things are going to serve him well over time.  We are in such the early stage of his career, the important thing is continued work ethic day in and day out, day in and day out.  As you get success or accolades or any of those things, those are nice and you appreciate them for a moment, and then you move on to make sure that you’re always improving.  That’s the challenge of someone that’s drafted high, gets to play and then has some success.  The goal is sustained growth and success and reaching your potential, which you have got to work hard to do.”

(On if Haden’s time at the University of Florida prepared him for the NFL better than other rookies) -- “We have gotten rookies from a lot of good programs and it’s still so different.  It’s hard for anybody, regardless of what program they came from, to make the adjustment.  There are so many new things, the talent level from every team he plays is consistent and higher, the length of the season, there are all of those things.  You would like to think that one guy is more prepared than another, but it’s all new for all of them.”

(On Mohamed Massaquoi getting consistent production over the last few games) -- “I think it’s a combination of protections, him doing a better job of getting open, Jake doing a good job of getting him the ball and it all works in coordination with each other.  If any component of that breaks down, the production is not going to be as consistent.  Time and development, we’ve talked about the receiver here today (Steve Johnson), the guy had 12 catches his first two years, and now he’s at 61 catches.  Mike Sims-Walker, there’s a guy that didn’t have very much production for two years, and then has really blossomed.  It takes some time to keep moving forward and seeing your potential.”

(On how impressed he is that Eric Barton was able to come back from his neck injury last year and start this season and recently win the team’s Ed Block Courage Award) -- “I remember talking to him about it prior to him making any decisions and it’s tough because you’re dealing with a neck issue, it’s such a violent game and he plays such a violent position that there were a lot of question marks.  In talking through that, he was committed to do it and I think he’s done it really well.  It hasn’t been an easy thing to do, it never is.  There’s so much uncertainty coming back from an injury, let alone a neck injury.  I give him a lot of credit for the way that he handled it, the way that he worked to get back, the things that he’s done since he’s been back and I think he’s very deserving of the award.”

(On Steve Johnson being a seventh round pick and showing what he can do) -- “It’s such an imperfect science with the draft, and you have to have patience too.  There’s a patience level, can you wait that long?  Sometimes it’s opportunity as well.  You get that chance and suddenly it happens.  Peyton was a seventh rounder, so the league is filled with guys that you miss on and then they need to get an opportunity.  Sometimes it happens right away.  Keenan McCardell was here and he really didn’t hit until he went to Jacksonville.”

(On if there was something about the offense Johnson was on in Kentucky that made his breakthrough more unexpected) -- “I don’t know enough about that to tell you the truth.”


Prev Next

Browns news, features and notes