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KEY QUESTIONS: How can Lions fix red zone issues?

Detroit Lions head coach Jim Caldwell spoke to the media Monday, a little more than 12 hours after his team suffered a 20-15 loss at home to Pittsburgh, their third-straight defeat.

Here are some of the key questions to come out of that media session:

What can the Lions do this week to help fix some of the red zone issue that showed up Sunday night?

The Lions were 0-for-5 in the red zone. Quarterback Matthew Stafford completed just two of 11 attempts inside the Pittsburgh 20-yard line, the running backs gained just four yards on five rushing attempts, and there were enough protection and run blocking issues upfront to cause concern.

"There's no magic to it," Caldwell said. "It's just strictly working at what you're doing, getting better, execution has to be better. We didn't execute as well as we're capable."

When asked about Dwayne Washington specifically, and his lack of success in the power back role Sunday night, Caldwell said people should take a closer look at the film before making any final judgements on the second-year back's performance.

"He's got to have some room to run, too," Caldwell said. "There's a lot of things that go along with that. There were a couple things that weren't done exactly right. There's not many guys in this league that are going to run through two guys that are unblocked."

Caldwell said his offense has to get better in the red zone from all ends of the spectrum.

Where is this Lions running game at? Is it a schematic problem?

The Lions averaged just 3.2 yards per carry against the Steelers, and now have 100 yards rushing as a team in just four of their last 23 contests dating back to the beginning of last season.

"I think you always have to look at everything you do," Caldwell said. "I don't think there's anything you shouldn't look at and try to examine and try to improve upon. Does it fit your personnel? All those kinds of things."

Caldwell reiterated that it's his goal to have a respectable run game, which he's stated in the past starts with a 4.0 average per rush.

Right now, that aspect of the offense isn't good enough. The Lions currently rank 28th in rushing.

Do teams respect Detroit's run game enough right now?

"That's a question for you to ask our opponents," Caldwell said.

View in-game photos from the Detroit Lions' Week 8 game vs. Pittsburgh Steelers.

Why is rookie linebacker Jalen Reeves-Maybin gaining more trust from the coaching staff?

The simple answer is that he's making more plays the more opportunities he's been given. He played 22 snaps Sunday and had five tackles, including one for a loss.

"He's getting around the ball a little more often, making plays," Caldwell said. "I think he's performing better, plain and simple."

How did Brian Mihalik hold up at left tackle after watching the film?

Mihalik, a former defensive lineman coming out of college, made his first career start at left tackle for the Lions vs. the Steelers. He was credited by Pro Football Focus with giving up a quarterback hit and five hurries, but no sacks.

"I think he did a nice job against a real tough opponent," Caldwell said. "He did well. He hung in there and battled and did a nice job for us."

The Steelers came into the contest No. 2 in the NFL in sacks.

What was Caldwell's opinion of the ruckus at the end of the game and the subsequent ejection of defensive tackle A'Shawn Robinson for throwing a punch?

"When you're wrong, you're wrong," Caldwell said. "Obviously, he was penalized and ejected from the game. So, that's an issue."

There were three players – Cornelius Washington, Jeremiah Valoaga and DJ Hayden – who ran out onto the field when the fighting began. Caldwell also called that an issue.

"Those are the things we've got to address," he said. "We're not going to stand for it. One of the things we want to be known for is we want to play this game the way it's supposed to be played and losing your poise is not one of those things."

Caldwell said he'll handle the issues in-house, but was also aware that the league may have something to say about the incident as well.

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