Postgame Quotes: Detroit Lions

Posted Nov 8, 2009

Opening statement
“We all know how much turnovers mean in the game of football and today was a classic example. We got turnovers early, we capitalized, got up and then we gave the ball back too much. That turned the game. Third-down defense had been something that had been going good for us; we took a little step back there today. We tried to blitz, then we had a hard time getting that done. We tried coverage, but we can’t allow 50-percent conversions on third down. Missed opportunities. Again, the same thing I talked about last week: we have balls in our hands, we have to be able to make plays and we have to take care of the ball on offense.”
On if QB Matthew Stafford took a step back this week
“I agree in some part. We also need to do a better job of helping our quarterback out. We had catchable balls again and there’s a chance to move the chains and there’s chances to get in good positions. Where I think he took a step back that he had sort of passed early in the season were the interceptions where he was too aggressive down the field where it warranted checking the ball down or making a little bit of a safer play. So, I think in that regard, some of the turnovers. Late in the game, that’s a little different story. Late in the game is one of those situations where you have to push the ball down the field (and) you have to be aggressive when those things happen. We had too many times where we were in 2nd-and-long on offense – we lost yards on first down – and that makes it difficult on the quarterback. But he has to do a better job of taking care of the ball for sure.”
On if he was talking about the first two interceptions in Seattle territory as being too aggressive
“Really, how many was it – five altogether? One of them, I don’t know if he got the ball tipped, or he got pressure. It was obviously a short throw, it didn’t come out the way that it needed to. But, yeah, all those plays – they were playing a lot of Cover 2. In that regard, there’s sometimes where you need to be able to check the ball down. He made some other good throws and, like I said, we have to be able to make plays. We have to be able to make some catches.”
On if he thinks the bubble screen was Seattle’s answer to the blitz
“Yeah, the screens – we got hurt on the screens when we weren’t blitzing. It was more coverage stuff that we got beat on screens. Bubble screens – they did have one where they sort of beat us on the screen. That’s a good quarterback, he’s seen that stuff before.”
On if there is a fear that this could be a demoralizing loss
“You’ve got to play 60 minutes of the game and we’re not going to be demoralized. We’re going to be mad, we’re going to be determined, we’re going to take steps to address what happened today. But we’re not going to be demoralized. We know exactly what happened in this game.”
On why he didn’t want to try and return the ball with two seconds remaining in the first half
“There was too much of a chance for a bad play there. If he fumbles and the ball pops up (then) they return it for a touchdown. When there’s two seconds left, they’re not going to cover, they’re going to play an umbrella coverage. It’s too much of a risk there.”
On if he wishes Stafford would have managed the game more with a 17-0 lead instead of taking so many risks
“Well, we were up 17-0 because turnovers put us in good position, but he also had made some of those plays down the field. So it’s hard to say at that point, ‘Okay, what’s been successful, turn it down.’ There’s just times we need to help him out all together. We need to be able to hold up a little ebit longer in pass rush; we need to be able to make catches, he needs to make smarter decisions, he needs to make more accurate passes. It’s not just one person. It’s all around. The turnovers are on our whole offense. Matt made some decisions that I’m sure he’d like to have back, but it’s not all him. There’s other breakdowns along the way, whether it’s catching the ball, whether it’s protecting, all those different things.”


On having five picks
"It's frustrating. I didn't play well. I just made some poor throws, really. I was aggressive sometimes, but if I make a good throw in those situations maybe we're coming out with touchdowns instead of picks, but obviously I can't turn the ball over like that."
On which picks bother him the most
"That last one was tough. We were moving it pretty good. If I had thrown the ball a foot higher, it gets over that guy's head and hits Bryant Johnson in stride on the sideline."
On what made him over-agressive
"I don't know."
On whether this is a shock
"No, it's tough, but it's not a shock."
On whether he expected to throw five picks
"No, nobody does, but I wouldn't say shocked. I'd say tough."
On having a 17-point lead and then having the game turn so dramatically
"Yeah, I mean this is a crazy game and I have to understand that I can't turn the ball over. We saw what it did for us in the first half and they turned the ball over and if I do that, gave it right back to them."
On what the game-changer was
"I couldn't put my finger on it. We turned the ball over, they didn't."


On getting turnovers from Seattle and turning them into points
“The defense came up big and put us in great field position that whole first quarter. We were playing inside their 50 in the first quarter and points come easy. We capitalized on turnovers and scored.”
On if you can put your finger on what happened from that point forward
“I can’t really put my finger on it right now. I’ll need to watch the film (and) see what happened. I dropped a ball on third and that just kills drives and makes you made. I've got to come up with that play and keep the offense on the field and keep the drives alive because drops kill drives.”
On being a focal point of the offense today
“We practiced all week in it and prepared well, and thought I got the opportunity. I have to come back and look at film, and come back to try and help us win next week.”
On how disappointed are you
“Every loss is when you put so much toward it and you watch your teammates work. Everybody works their tails off and to lose games in the NFL hurts. Everybody’s out there trying like hell to win and it hurts. The only thing that feels good in this business is a win.”


On facing Seattle
"I mean we knew the game plan, it's the West Coast offense. They throw underneath routes."
On how he feels
"Just crushed. It hurts real bad, but we're going to remember these days and learn from it."
On whether being here is tougher then he thought it would be
"I've had some of these tough losses before. They all feel the same. Just terrible."
On bouncing back after this loss
"We've got some fighters in this room and me being a veteran, I'm going to keep playing the way a professional is supposed to play. Coach (Jim) Schwartz is going to take charge."
On whether Coach Schwartz was angry after the game
"Normally in these types of losses, coaches are hurting. We'll probably get some of that tomorrow, but he didn't have to scream. Everybody in this locker room is hurting right now."
On whether he thought there was a chance to win the game getting the ball back with two minutes left
"Oh yeah, all the way. we knew we were going to win the game until they scored that touchdown. I'm at a loss for words right now."