• Joey Jarzynka

Browns' LB Malcolm Smith Quotes 8.29.20

COURTESY OF CLEVELAND BROWNS MEDIA RELATIONS DEPARTMENT


On joining the Cleveland Browns and how the team has embraced him:

“It has been great with the team so far. Practice has been smooth. Just getting used to the verbiage as far as on the field stuff. Obviously, there has been a lot going on off the field so being in a different environment is a little difficult, just trying to stay in contact with family and friends back home, keep having conversations and figuring out ways to make things better, but football has been good.”


On the Browns’ social justice efforts and conversations and his involvement with it:

“We had some individual meetings, and we had some good conversations. We are kind of still developing an overall identity as a team. For me, it is kind of just stepping in and listening to the other guys because I just got here. It is fair to say your piece, but just trying to hear what has been going on. The initiative that the three [professional] sports teams have done, I think it is awesome that they are teaming up because there is power in numbers.”


On joining the Browns midway through training camp and the pressure to compete and contribute in that situation:

“I wouldn’t say it is pressure. It is a cool opportunity to have, especially with a new coaching staff here and some of the people I am familiar with. Obviously, the work the coaches have done and some of the players have done throughout the league, a lot of respect for a lot of the people here. I am just trying to add my sauce and bring what I can to the mix. That is how you get things better. You blend energies and you try to get everyone moving in the same direction. That has been my thing so far and trying to impart whatever wisdom I have on the guys in the room and take what I can from them. Just trying to build every day.”


On the Browns LBs being relatively young, outside of him and LB B.J. Goodson, and if he is taking a leadership role as a veteran:

“It is not fair for me to keep some of the knowledge that I have. You have to share what you know for us to be good, for us to compete and for us to operate at our best as a unit. You don’t want to miss any opportunities to share what you know. I am definitely not that type of guy [who would keep my knowledge to myself], and I don’t think there are any type of guys like that on this team that I have seen.”


On his NFL experience despite not being a full-time starter in recent years and his role with the Browns:

“For me, it is all about one day at a time, not trying to look too far into the future and stack one day as it comes. For me, it is about being active in practice today. That has always been my goal throughout my career. I am obviously a seventh-round draft pick so you never have the comfort of looking forward and being like, ‘Oh, I am planning on doing this, that and the third.’ You can inside, but that is not how it gets done. It comes from every day. It comes from consistency. That is what I am trying to focus on, and whatever comes of it, comes of it.”


On being a Super Bowl MVP and how often he reflects on that accomplishment:

“At this point, it is cool to see. Obviously, there are a ton of great teammates that go into something like that. Anytime you hear that, it just attaches the moments that we shared together with that group, all the things we did as a unit for me to have some individual success and the guys along the way that helped us get to that point. It is cool. It is definitely cool for my family to have something like that attached to my name, and it is special, but overall, it is just a testament to the group we had and the work we put in and even myself individually.”


On where the Super Bowl MVP trophy is currently and if it is on the mantel:

“It is at home. It is at my house. It is in the office. It is not hidden. You can see it (laughter).”


On if not being invited to the NFL Combine prior to his rookie season still drives him to this day:

“Absolutely, every day. Every day. That is always something that I think about. Since that day, it has been on my mind. I think that was the biggest chip once I got started in the league. That is always going to be with me as a badge of honor at this point.”


On if other players ask him about being Super Bowl MVP:

“Yeah, for sure. They want to know about the team we had, what it was like and the car you got because there are obviously not too many Super Bowl MVPs. It is one of those things where you show up in a big game, and even me, I wasn’t expecting to get it – maybe some of those quarterbacks were. It is a special award. People want to know, ‘What was it like to be at the pinnacle and play so well? What was your mind’s state before the game? How did you get ready?’ Most of the time, it is eliminating the pressure and eliminating the idea and anxiety that comes with the moment just walking in.”


On the Browns attempting to establish a winning culture for several years and important steps for teams to accomplish that goal:

“One is definitely the passion every day to come to work and understand that you are competing on multiple fronts. You are competing to stay healthy. You are competing to stay strong throughout the year. You are competing to pay attention to the small details. Everything counts. That was something that we always harped on. All the good teams that I have been on and all the good organizations, it has always been about everything you put in counting toward something. There are no steps that get ignored, and as soon as you do, you give an opportunity for someone else to beat you.”

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