Browns Players Speak following 23-21 Loss

Joe Haden on if there’s anything he could have done differently: “It was a good throw and catch, but I put it on myself and I understand I have to make that play.”


WR Travis Benjamin

On the last punt of the game:

“I wasn’t afraid at all. I got up under the ball correctly and at the last minute, a gust of wind blew it and it went past my hand. I didn’t want to go back and reach for the ball, so I just let it pass by.”

LB Karlos Dansby

On what happened with the 12 men on defense penalties toward the end of the game:

“We have to do better. We have to play technically sound and make better plays. That’s the nuts and bolts of it right there.”

On losing another close game to a division rival:

“When we lose like this, it is tough. We have to bounce back and start stringing these wins together. We have to position ourselves to catch these guys at the end.”

On if the bye week will help the defense make adjustments:

“Definitely, anytime you get a bye week, it is good for the mind, body and soul. We can take our time, make some adjustments and get ready for the long haul.”


On making a big play late in the game:

“Coach was just telling me to say focused, that we had a big play coming up. I feel like the ball was in the air for at least two hours. It felt good getting the ball. (QB) Brian Hoyer threw a great ball.”

On how surprised he was that he was so open on the big play:

“No, I wasn’t really surprised that I was so open. We have a great coaching staff that drew it up and it turned out to be a perfect play.”

On being upset he didn’t score on the big play:

“Yeah, I’m a little upset, but at the same time, it just felt good getting my hands on the ball.”

On how tough the loss was:

“Yeah, it’s definitely a tough loss, but being a rookie, I don’t really look at what went wrong and what went right. I just try to stick to my role.”

On if he thinks the Browns would have won if he scored a TD:

“I wouldn’t think that. There are many more factors that go into a game than just one play.”

DB Joe Haden

On Head Coach Mike Pettine putting the loss on himself:

“That is what he said, but that doesn’t make any sense. He did a great job out there. We had a lot of chances to win, and there are a lot of things we could have done better, but we just didn’t finish.”

On giving the Ravens too many chances:

“There were a lot of opportunities, but we pride ourselves on going on the field, making plays and getting stops and I just didn’t do that today. It was a really good play. He (Ravens WR Steve Smith, Sr.) just got me on a go route.”

On if there’s anything he could have done differently:

“It was a good throw and catch, but I put it on myself and I understand I have to make that play.”

On what happened toward the end of the game:

“It was a lot of different things, and it wasn’t just the fourth (quarter). There were a lot of times throughout the game that we could have made better plays. They just seemed to make plays when they needed it at the end.”

On the team feeling disappointed:

“It’s definitely disappointing, but it’s early in the season. We can’t keep our heads down for a long time. At the end of the day, it’s only one game, and while we wanted to win this one, we have the bye week coming up and we are going to come in and study this film because we have a long season ahead of us. It’s only the third game of the season, and we are not going to be in panic mode. This team has a lot of ability The offense is moving the ball, and the defense is getting off the field so we are definitely hurt by this loss, especially when you had the opportunity to win, but at the end of the day, we believe in ourselves and the team, and we know we are going to make more plays than we don’t.”

On getting over the edge as a team:

“You are in the NFL. Hopefully, we can start blowing people out, getting the offense and defense clicking on all cylinders, but it is so hard to get any wins in this league. We know we are going to be going against very tough competition and tough teams, but we have to scratch and claw, and I like to go to war with all the guys on this team. We did a great job of moving the ball, and the defense was getting stops, but we just have to make them at the end of the day. Just from what we saw, we have to figure out how to get these Ws, but it is early and we are showing some promise.


On the long pass play to WR Taylor Gabriel:

“He was wide open. It’s one of those (plays) you kind of keep in your back pocket for when you think you’re getting a certain kind of coverage, and we got it. I saw he was wide open, just threw it and let him run underneath it.”

On the loss despite good offensive production:

“It’s tough; it’s heartbreaking. We were on the other side this week, and it doesn’t feel good. Really when it comes down to it, we made a lot of plays but we didn’t make them when we really needed to. In this league, you have to do it when it’s on the line. We did it last weekend; we didn’t do it this week. As good as we felt the whole game, when it comes down to critical moments, we just have to make more plays.”

On the last third-down pass attempt to WR Andrew Hawkins:

“It was a little bit behind him. I think I got to him a little quicker than we usually do it because of the progression. If I could put it in front of him, Hawk’s just turning. That’s on me, I have got to put it in front of him.”

On the play following the long Gabriel reception:

“It was a miscommunication. It was kind of an alert play and there was miscommunication.”

On if he was aware of the line of scrimmage on the illegal forward pass:

“I knew it was close. I think I remember kind of trying to slow my body up a little bit and thinking I wasn’t fully over. But, you’ve got to be smart there and make it an easier field goal, to try and get as much as you can and get down. You see (WR) Miles (Austin) pop his hands in the back of the end zone and you’re thinking, ‘I might be close.’ I know the rule is your whole body has to be across the line so I’m thinking that hopefully my foot is back or something. It was one of those cases where you know it’s maybe worth the risk because if you’re not over, it’s a touchdown and seals the deal. I’ll have to look at it on film and from here on out, have more awareness.”

On the trick pass play to QB Johnny Manziel:

“We talked about it all week long. It was obviously something we practiced. From our knowledge, it was a legal play.”

On which part of the play he thought was legal:

“From what we were told, and we practiced it that way all week, was as long as he doesn’t come off the field and try to come back on, it’s a legal play. That’s not what we got called for anyways. We got called for illegal motion because there was a little bit of a mix-up there. The league will have to deal with that.”


On his one play of the game:

“It was one play. Our two-set play list in there, so I ran the first one on one play and then came back out and tried to get them a little confused as we were subbing in. We really got the look that we wanted, and we took off. Unfortunately, we got a penalty on it. I played receiver in high school, so it really wasn’t a big deal; just one play in the game. I wish we could have not had the penalty, but that’s how it goes.”

LB Jabaal Sheard

On the defense at the end of the game:

“We will go back and watch the film. I didn’t do a good job of getting to the quarterback. Up front, we didn’t do a good job. That’s on us. We have to go and get to the quarterback. We need to make plays.”

On not making enough plays at the end of the game:

“There were plenty of plays at the beginning of the game. We have to execute early, play disciplined, sound, and make plays early. Nothing to do with what happened at the end of the game, there were a lot of opportunities we missed in the first half. We gave up too many points.”

On new Coach Mike Pettine saying the coaches were out-coached today:

“I don’t know what they are talking about. I take it on us. We let them rush for too many yards up front. We didn’t get any sacks. That’s what we are here for up front, that’s what we have to do.”

On the multiple 12 men in the huddle penalties:

“We have to be more sound and pay attention to the sidelines to see what’s coming in or what’s going on. The stadium is pretty loud. We just have to be more sound. That’s on us.”

OL Joe Thomas

On today’s game:

“We did a good job in the beginning, but towards the end, we were sputtering. That’s when we need to play our best. That’s why we won last week and lost this week.”

On not being a play away the entire game:

“We just needed to convert that third down and we weren’t able to do it. If we get that, they don’t have any timeouts and the game is over. That’s the story of the game today. We were right there so many times. We just weren’t able to make the one play to finish the game. You have to give credit to them because they did a great job on defense not letting us make the one play we needed several times.”

On if he beats himself up after the game:

“Throughout the course of a game there is any number of things you could say ‘if it went this way, we would have won’. Just like last week, if one thing would have gone the other team’s way we would have lost. That’s the NFL. You’ve got to make more plays at the end of the game, when it counts, than your opponent. The Ravens made one more play than we did today.”

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