Defensive coordinator Paul Pasqualoni and offensive coordinator Jim Bob Cooter spoke to the media Monday.
Here are 10 takeaways from those media sessions:
1. Pasqualoni doesn’t seem too worried about some of the defensive lapses we saw from his unit in the preseason. He explained that the preseason is about working on technique and fundamentals, and trying to learn personnel. He likes the experience he has in certain areas, and seemed excited to see it all come together when they start scheming against the Jets this week.
2. The Lions are expected to use a running back by committee approach to their backfield. Cooter liked what he saw from rookie Kerryon Johnson in the preseason, and likes the trajectory he’s on. Cooter said he’s going to kind of let Johnson’s role develop and define itself based off the rookie’s play early on in the season.
3. With little film of Jets starting quarterback Sam Darnold out there to evaluate, Pasqualoni admits his defense will have to be able to adjust on the fly based off what Darnold and the Jets come out showing Monday night. The best Pasqualoni can do is try to identify what he thinks Darnold’s strengths and weaknesses are based off what the Jets thought he could do best in the preseason.
4. It doesn’t appear that one player has emerged to take over the No. 1 tight end role. Cooter is still plugging certain guys into different roles and is keeping an open mind when it comes to his No. 1. He likes the versatility of the group. Will someone step up early and force Cooter to leave him on the field?
5. When talking about what areas he really likes in his defense, Pasqualoni mentioned the experience at the safety position as one. Glover Quin (10 years), Tavon Wilson (seven) and Quandre Diggs (four) have seen a lot of football and been in a lot of situations.
6. Cooter said there aren't drastic changes to the blocking schemes upfront under new offensive line coach Jeff Davidson. A lot of things might not be evident from a big-picture standpoint to the fans at home. It might be nuances within blocking schemes and certain ways Cooter goes about doing things. It may be more small-picture stuff or what Cooter described as “one percent differences that add up.”
7. Ziggy Ansah is arguably Detroit’s best pass rusher, and Pasqualoni says Ansah has looked good in practice and shown no ill effects since joining practice of the injury that kept him on the PUP list to start camp. Pasqualoni has worked with some explosive pass rushers in the past, and says the one thing all great rushers have is a great get off. He considers Ansah among that group.
8. In the end, it seems like Matt Cassel’s experience was a big factor in winning him the backup quarterback job. Because of that experience, Cooter thinks Cassel will be a good guy to have around in the meeting room, film room and practice field during the week.
9. New linebackers Eli Harold and Marquis Flowers are picking up the defense quickly and getting reps in practice. Pasqualoni expects them to be able to contribute sooner rather than later.
10. Quarterback Matthew Stafford has a lot of leeway at the line of scrimmage. Cooter says that’s really evolved the longer he and Stafford have been together. They really have a good sense of how the other sees the game. How that plays out on gameday is going to go a long way in the overall success of the offense.