Head Coach Jim Schwartz Post-Practice Quote Sheet

Posted Oct 29, 2009

On how QB Matthew Stafford and WR Calvin Johnson looked at practice
“We’ll take a look at the coach’s video and we’ll see there. Those guys are making progress. Those guys are making good progress. We’re happy with the progress they’re making. I think both of them still have a ways to go and the good thing is we still have a ways until Sunday.”
On what kind of impact Stafford and Johnson will have when they return
“You start with a guy like Calvin (Johnson), he obviously changes the game. He changes not only our offense, but he changes the way defenses play; so I think that’s obviously a big factor. I think the strides that Matt had made early in the season, he needs to be able to pick that back up again. The one thing that’s going to happen (is) they’ll play when they’re ready. Not to get out there before they’re ready. That will be the evaluation. It won’t be because of whatever—the evaluation is going to be are they physically able to do their jobs? And if they are, then they’ll be out there. If they’re not, then they won’t.”
On what is holding RB Kevin Smith back
“I thought earlier in the season we were efficiently moving the ball in the run game. You look at the Washington (Redskins) game; I think you had 101 yards in a little bit more than two quarters. He was running the ball very effectively there, had a little bit of setback with an injury and hasn’t really got on track. The offensive line—the same thing—they need to just get back going. There’s a lot of things that go with the run game; our passing game, the ability to keep run defenders out of it, our defense keeping us in the game so we can run the ball the whole game and then offense, it’s offensive line, it’s tight ends, it’s full backs and it’s running backs making yards, more yards than are there. It’s one thing just to get what’s there. Our running backs need to make a guy miss and get some explosive runs.”
On how they will limit Ram’s RB Steven Jackson
“He’s one of those guys that can run inside, but he also has the speed to go outside. He’s big. He’s strong. He’s good in the passing game, so he spreads you thin. We’ve said this before about a lot of different things in general; when you do everything well it makes it hard on the defense. If you’re a one trick pony, if you’re a power inside runner but don’t have speed or you’re a scat back but don’t have power… he’s (versatile). Really, the honest answer to that, it’s going to take all 11 guys. It’s not going to be, ‘Hey, it’s just going to be the linebackers and defensive tackles to stop the inside run.’ It’s not going to be our perimeter guys. It’s going to take all 11 to stop a guy like Steven Jackson.”
On how LB Vinny Ciurciu is coming along
“Good, we’ve got him in a lot of different roles. He’s a four-team special teams player. He’s proven that he can do that. We’re also getting him up to speed at linebacker and he’s also working some at fullback, just to be a multidimensional player. You’ve got to do something to get on the bus so-to-speak and the more he can do the better chance it has to get him involved, not just on special teams. He’s done all that stuff in different places he’s been. He’s played linebacker. He’s played fullback, but his main contribution is going to be a hardcore special teamer.”