"I think that's how you have to do it," Linehan told Detroitlions.com on Monday. "You can't lose your nerve. I think early in the first half of our first game maybe that happened to us a couple of times. I think we've really improved on that ever since then. Things will open up if you do that as the game goes on."
That seemed to be the case in the second half and in overtime against the Titans.
"I think it was just a matter or sticking with it for an entire game," Linehan said. "I think to have the success we're going to have offensively doing both, you have to be able to do that and establish it from the start of the game three or four quarters."
The Lions finished with 583 total yards of offense on Sunday and 442 passing yards.
The offense needs to do a better job converting field goals into touchdowns, certainly, and Linehan said they'll continue to try and find different ways to get Johnson the ball earlier in games.
Linehan also talked to Detroitlions.com on a number of other topics:
On Leshoure's debut performance:
"I thought he did a great job, (especially) for a guy who hasn't played in a live football game since college to come out and be very effective running the football. He's only going to get better too, which is a big positive for us. He's a guy that can carry the load. Not just a guy that's going to give you something different. He's a guy that can play really on all downs if he has to but we have some good depth I think at the running back position now that he's back. He really gave us a guy that was moving the chains on the ground."
On Leshoure always seeming to be moving forward:
"I think he's a guy that makes those very subtle yards after contact that good runners have. You call a run, even if it's well played at that point, when the play is over if you called it on first down you're looking at second-and-medium not second-and-long. And if you're running on second down you're looking at third-and-medium as opposed to third-and-long. Converting the first down running the football like we were able to do, getting 11 rushing first downs or whatever it was, that's going to bode well for us as we move forward."
On the ability to get Johnson more involved in the second half:
"We'd like to get some more production earlier in the games if we can, keep finding ways to do that. If we can effectively establish that over the course of the game, I think that the production of Calvin Johnson will come to you as opposed to trying to force it."
On the difference offensively in the second half:
"Well, we made adjustments. What we got from our last opponent was totally unlike anything we were watching on tape all week so we've got to continue to be proactive knowing people are going to try and copy some of the things people do and just not really have any qualms about going into the game knowing that's what you're going to get."
On missing TE
"Yeah anytime you're short a guy like Tony that's so important to our offense you miss that. But I think the other guys stepped in there. Calvin certainly was able to step in and be a factor in the inside part of the field. Other guys have to step up and pick up the slack. That's just the way it is."
On the miscommunication on the last play:
"It's just an on-the-field mechanic we've got to iron out. We just didn't execute it. Really, we were trying to get the defense to jump and not everybody, whether it was the crowd noise or whatever it was, we just had a miscommunication in our mechanic. And we've got to improve upon that."
On the Vikings defense:
"They do what they do on defense. They believe in it. They've played us pretty much the same way since I've been here defensively. They force you to go out and execute to beat them. They don't beat themselves. We've got our work cut out for us. They have some gifted pass rushers and interior players. It looks like they've added some nice young talent to their back seven. And they're playing really well right now."