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Marla Ridenour on Sports

Fujita returns to Big Easy

By Marla Published: October 24, 2010

After spending the previous four years with the New Orleans Saints, Browns linebacker Scott Fujita recorded an interception, a sack and a team-high 11 tackles in a 30-17 victory over his former team Sunday. He's what he had to say afterward.

(about your return) This is probably the last game I'll ever play in the Superdome, so it's fun to come back. I've never been shy about how I felt about this city. To come back and be received the way I was around town last night, it felt good to be back and it was a good win. How about that David Bowens? Oldest guy in the league, a lot of gray -- gray beard, gray hair, a lot of big plays today.   It was a fun day. I think this is a win we can build on.

(did you know this was coming) When you practice a team like that so much, you have more familiarity with the players than you do the scheme itself. I was more comfortable because I'd faced the guy so many times. Drew still completed a helluva lot of balls today. They had some long drives, defensively we were on the field a lot. That's a damn good offense we played today. I feel we had a good plan and we executed it.

(disguising your defenses) That was something we talked about all week. I was in there early on Monday, trying to help these guys formulate a plan as best as I could. Thinking back to teams in the past that have played this offense well, looking at some of that film. You talk about those things in theory. Planning it and Xs and Os is one thing. To come out and as execute it the way we did, that was pretty impressive. A lot of times when you talk about those pre-snap disguises and try not to let Drew see what we're in, it sounds good in practice. In the game sometimes you get a little nervous that he's going to come up and quick-snap you and the ball's going to be flying out right way. To come out and execute it, I was so proud of everybody. It's tough to do that against Drew because he's so smart.

(were those new looks for this week) Not so much new looks, we were just real versatile. We were changing stuff all the time, trying to show as many different looks as possible, try to confuse him because he's one of those guys like a Peyton or a Brady who is so sharp at recognizing coverages and identifying where pressure comes from. He's one of the best.

(did you confuse Brees) At times, absolutely, I think we did. Credit to the game plan we have, Rob Ryan and his whole staff, and all the players. Especially the d-line guys because it's tough for them up front moving around all the time. And those guys in the secondary, to show a two-deep show and single high and rolling down, it's exhausting. For linebackers it's not as tough.

(it's been three years since Brees threw 4 interceptions) I don't recall ever seeing that happen. A couple of them, some underneath passes and D-Bo, I don't know if he had stick 'em on his hands or what.

( how did a sack and pick early feel) It felt good, but they were things that helped our team win. It wasn't like I came in here and said this is a vindication game. I have no hard feelings towards this team or the city whatsoever. To me it was great to come back. I wanted to win a game because we came into this game 1-5 and the Cleveland Browns need a win. It had nothing to do with any payback or anything like that. I think a lot of people assumed it would be that way. I have nothing but great things to say about every guy on that team and this whole city.

(did you contribute to steams things) No, but how about that, huh? We came out obviously trying to win this game. Some of the gutsy calls we had offensively. What was it, third and something and a little toss to Peyton Hillis and he throws it back to Colt McCoy. I didn't even see them practice that this week. I was as shocked as everyone else was. We played to win the game today, no doubt about it.

(your interception) I'm glad he threw it to me and it wasn't too far that I could catch it because that was at the end of a long drive and I was gassed. I think an offensive lineman tackled me, so that was a little bit embarrassing. That was probably play 10 or 11, so I was gassed.

(what insights did you give for game plan) Characteristics of certain guys, maybe I have some thoughts on how you can beat this guy in a rush. But these running backs, I was unfamiliar with them. I had a couple things about Drew. But he's such a competitor, he's tough to prepare for. There were some things I'd been able to pick up in practice in the past, line of scrimmage-type stuff. None of that helped us today because it was all different.

(see a lot of people last night) That was part of my own personal game plan that had me more focused today. Eric Barton and I took a lap around the neighborhood, I wanted to walk about. We stayed three blocks from my old condo. I felt if I got out and got in the street and went out and high-fived everyone and went by my old condo. There were a lot of emotions for me coming back. I knew that was going to happen, it was going to be natural. I kinda wanted to get that part out of the way so I could come in today and it was just football.

(surprise you boos) I joked around saying there were some boos for Morten Andersen as well. I feel no shortage of love in this city whatsoever.

(was game played any differently because of NFL directive on hitting) Just one time someone on our team caught a ball, a deep seam route, and the safety came up and blasted him in the ankles. That guy may have taken him high a few weeks ago. It looked pretty scary. Now you've got guys whose ankles are going to be taken out and whose knees are going to get blown up. Kind of a catch-22 if you ask me.

(do saints missed reggie bush and pierre thomas) They do. Those guys add a huge dynamic to that offense. Reggie, I hope he gets healthy at some point, but I'm glad he wasn't healthy for this game because I do a lot of stuff where I'm matched up one-on-one on a running back and I would rather not be matched up one-on-one on Reggie Bush. That much I know from practicing against him and him embarrassing the hell out of me for four years.

(what can this do for the browns, springboard) It can be. But like our win a few weeks back, we just have to find a way to build. We're 2-5 now. It's not where we want to be. I said a few weeks back you are what your record says you are. We're 2-5, but I feel like we're much better than that. Small things we have to keep cleaning up. Ball security was great. How about Colt McCoy managing the offense the way he does. It was just impressive. We can build on this, we've just got to keep putting the work in.

(trouble closing out games, drive 20-10, 7 1/2 min, you learning) That was huge. That drive was so impressive, to impose their will on the defense like that late in the game was huge for us. To me that's really what sealed the win for us. For Peyton to come out and the offensive line to take control of the game. To run that much time off the clock, that did it for us because defensively we were getting tired.



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