What's your opinion on the Hines Ward fines?
I think it's a fine line with what you say about it. You can get in trouble. But it's tough. He's not get penalized on the field for it. I don't think Hines Ward is dirty. I think he's a very tough, physical player. I don't agree with it, but it's not my call to make.
What do you think of the Bengals?
It doesn't matter what their record is. As we saw last week and on Monday night, anything can happen on any given Sunday in this league.
Defensively, are they sound?
They've got a very good defense. It's not going to be easy for us. It's going to be a challenge for us.
Do you feel better than you've felt in a while?
The bye week was very good for us. It got us all healthy and all rested. I feel good. I think we all feel pretty good going into this game.
How has Limas (Sweed) progressed?
He's come a long way. It's hard because you don't get a lot of work in practice with me because I've got to work with the other guys. He's come a long way and he's really stepped up and I'm sure if he gets a chance, he'll do just great.
You take the Ohio thing pretty seriously, don't you?
I love to go back there and play, just because growing up there were so many Browns and Bengals fans. It feels good winning there.
What about getting Willie Parker back this week?
You love to get a guy like that back. But Mewelde Moore did a great job last week. It's great that guys can step up and fill the void, but it's always going to be good to have Willie Parker back.
With the bye behind you, is this kind of the grind? You know what's ahead of you.
I wouldn't say it's all downhill from here, but it's all football. There's no time off. We have a tough schedule, we know that, and it starts this week with Cincinnati.
Does Ohio consider itself the football state?
No. Honestly, in my opinion, we are the in-between state. Indiana is the basketball state and Pennsylvania is the football state, so we have the best of both worlds. I just thought of that, I'm quick on my feet.
Is that something you become aware of early in life growing up in that state?
Oh yeah. You grow up around die-hard Browns fans and Bengals fans. You just know that on Sundays, everyone's watching games. That's how you know it's important.
Did you learn the history of Paul Brown and Woody Hayes?
I didn't care. I didn't like the Browns and Bengals. I didn't care about that stuff.
When a team is 0-6, do you expect them to play with nothing to lose?
I think people are making too big of a deal about their record, our record. It's the NFL and it's the Bengals and Steelers and it's going to be a slugfest no matter what.
There should be a lot of black and gold in that stadium.
Always, everywhere we go there's a bunch. But I love, there's nothing better in the third quarter when all you see is our fans and hear our fans. It's fun.