CLEVELAND — Following last Sunday’s 43-13 win over the Cleveland Browns, Tennessee Titans cornerback Malcolm Butler told wide receiver Jarvis Landry that he was the only one wearing orange and brown that played with any heart in front of their home fans at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland.
After Friday’s practice ahead of this week’s Monday Night Football game against the New York Jets, Landry addressed the exchange between him and Butler, which was featured in an episode of the team-produced “Building the Browns” program.
“I am sure some of our guys will read this and I want to be affirmative that everybody will find out what our team has, okay?” Browns coach Freddie Kitchens said. “Nobody is going to question our heart.
“There was nothing about heart with the way that game happened the other day. I do not know who the hell is saying that, but they really do not know. They are not going to question our heart. If they do, they do not know what the hell they are talking about, whoever it is writing it or saying it.”
Landry took the comment from Butler not as an individual compliment, but more so a sign of disrespect to his teammates.
“It is definitely [a dig] for somebody to say that,” Landry said. “It definitely kind of like took me by surprise for a second. At the same time, opponents are willing to say anything.
“You just kind of have to take it for what it is. In that matter, I know the guys here. I know that everybody is going to play until four quarters, 0:00 on the clock and the winner is decided. That was kind of my answer to it.”
Butler may have been prompted to insult the Browns because of their discipline problems against the Titans.
Kitchens said all throughout training camp and the preseason that “the Browns do not practice penalties,” and while no team ever looks to surrender near two fields worth of yards, Cleveland took things to a near historic level against the Titans.
The Browns not only committed 18 penalties for 182 lost yards, but six were personal fouls that cost the team 15 yards each time.
The 18 penalties were tied for the second-most in a single game in franchise history and the most since 1951.
“I know the guys that are in the building,” Landry said. “I know the guys that I go to work with every day and how hard we work.”
Kitchens added, “(Butler) does not know our locker room.”