In the same interview earlier this season in training camp, Suh said he’s expecting an “outstanding” season in 2012.
If there was any Lions player who could use a quick start to the season, it’s Suh, and he’s excited for the Lions' ability to finally showcase some of the blitzes, stunts and personnel packages they’ve been working on for the last five months that they left in the playbook during the preseason.
“Get out of the basics and allow those elaborate blitzes and that basic technique to really get after the quarterback and get after that running back,” Suh said Wednesday of what fans can see from the pass rush Sunday vs. the Rams.
The running back Suh is referring to is Steven Jackson, the Rams’ three-time Pro Bowler.
“He’s a good friend of mine,” Suh said. “I talked to him yesterday. I look forward to tackling him many, many times.”
Lions fans do, too.
They didn’t see as much of it last year as they did in Suh’s Pro Bowl rookie season of 2010. Suh tackles dropped from 66 in 2010 to 36 last year and his sacks from 10 to four.
“I have no concerns of last year,” Suh said. “I’m focused on 2012. We need to accomplish our goals. I need to accomplish my goals, which are all imbedded within our team goals.”
Suh said there were some technique issues he’s worked on since watching the cut-ups of last season and says he’s already seen results this preseason and is looking forward to tailoring those improvements with the scheme.
“I’ve seen consistency and progress toward that,” he said. “It’s a never-ending process that you’re going to continue to strive for going into Week 1 and Week 16. For me, I’m happy where I’m at for right now, but happy is never good.”
THE GREAT UNKNOWN
The Rams will feature 32 new players on their opening-day roster (60.4-percent) against the Lions Sunday. That could be a good thing if you consider the Rams won only two games last year.
For Schwartz and the Lions, though, it makes the Rams a tough team to game plan for.
“You could say that’s an edge for them,” Schwartz said of the Rams' roster turnover. “They certainly have the uncertainty edge. You have a preseason to go on. You don’t know how much they’ve shown in the preseason. What they’re going to do, how much they’re going to go with what we’ve already seen.
"We have a pretty long track record. We’ve talked about how our continuity helps us, but we’ve also had the same offensive coordinator, defensive coordinator for three years. We certainly have a much more visible track record and there is that unpredictable nature of a team with a new staff coming over. You don’t know exactly what they’re doing.
“I heard somewhere that there were teams that were going back to college football on Coach Schiano down in Tampa. I’ve been in that situation before. You’re spread very thin in the week. Also they have a lot of roster turnover, new guys. You could look at it as an advantage there.”
STAFFORD WANTS TO BE ELITE
Stafford threw for 5,038 yards, 41 touchdowns and 16 interceptions last season, becoming just the third player in league history to throw for 5,000 yards and 40 touchdowns in the same season.
But Stafford isn’t satisfied with being good. He wants his name to be among the Aaron Rodgers’, Tom Brady’s and Drew Brees’ of the NFL.
“I think you play this game to try to be the best and that’s as a team and as an individual,” Stafford said Wednesday.
“If you’re doing everything you can to help the team win and your team is winning then you’re naturally going to be mentioned in those regards. Obviously that’s something that I would definitely like.”
Stafford makes a great point. His statistics from last year are right up there with the elite quarterbacks in the league. What he lacks is the consistency over a long period of time and a Super Bowl ring. Until he gets both, he isn’t likely to be mentioned in the same sentence with the above names.
The Lions were without safety
Delams hasn’t practiced since Dr. James Andrews performed knee surgery Aug. 7. Lions head coach Jim Schwartz said last week Delmas would have to practice at some point this week if he wanted to play Sunday.
Houston has been out since suffering an ankle injury against the Raiders in the third preseason game.
The official injury report mentioned only Delmas and Houston as being out of practice. Their status for Sunday will be released on detroitlions.com at 4 p.m. Friday.
“All those guys that have been out are all working to get back and we expect them all back,” Schwartz said Wednesday.