O'HARA: What we learned from Week 7

Head coach Dan Campbell is not beaten down by the Detroit Lions' 0-7 won-loss record.

Just the opposite.

He sounded more energized and determined than ever – if that's possible – the day after the Lions' 28-19 loss to the Los Angeles Rams.

The Lions were competitive against the Rams, as they have been in most games this season. They had the lead until early in the fourth quarter, when the Rams pulled away.

Campbell's mindset is one of the things we learned about as the Lions' losing streak continues.

"I'm frustrated like anyone would be," Campbell said in a Zoom interview. "I'm frustrated like our players would be. It gives me more motivation and driven anger to make things right and help these guys as much as I can, and help this staff.

"That's the way I'm cut. It makes me want to dig in more. I'm stubborn that way."

Among the other things we learned include the following: The success of the Lions' onside kick was the byproduct of preparation, with a little bit of luck; more work could be ahead for running back D'Andre Swift, and Matthew Stafford had a nice comment about the makeup of his old team after Sunday's game.

We start with Campbell, and his mood:

He is not blind to the winless record. But he also knows what he has seen on the playing field, and from watching tape.

"We are what our record says we are," he said. "We are competing. We're giving ourselves a chance to win games at the end of games. We're making some strides now.

"They're going to pay massive dividends sooner than later."

Campbell recalled what he told the team before the start of the season.

"I'm built for this," he said. "I've seen it. I've lived it. I've done it. I've been in the high highs and the low lows. I'm ready for this. I'm not giving up on any of these guys.

"I'm not listening to lack of talent talk. I don't buy into that. We've got more to give as a staff. These players have more to give as players. We're going to find a way to win a game."

Kick starter: The onside kick that was recovered by starting safety Tracy Walker was the first play in a day that was more successful for the Lions' special teams than anyone could have imagined.

The Lions also pulled off two fake punts. Kicker Austin Siebert, who kicked the onside kick, was four-for-four on field goals.

What was the key to the kick?

"Just do your job in practice, and let it come out on gameday," he said. "Not thinking about it. Just do it."

Anything else?

"Living right," Seibert said.

He knew the trick plays were in the game plan, but he didn't know when they'd be called.

He was told 30 seconds before he went out for the onside kick.

Swift running: Like his name would indicate, Swift is on the move with the Lions. He had a big game against the Rams – 48 yards rushing and 96 receiving for 144 in total yards from scrimmage.

He ran 63 yards with a screen pass for the Lions only TD of the game. He was pulling away from the Rams' defenders when he crossed the goal line.

There could be a bigger role ahead for Swift. Assistant head coach and running backs coach Duce Staley has been high on Swift's ability.

"He's getting better, and he's improving every week," Campbell said. "We'll find runs that suit him best and let him go a little bit. I also think we can expand things in the passing game.

"He's just growing exponentially. He's gaining a lot of confidence in himself. Duce is doing a hell of a job with him."

Stafford tribute: He's had nothing but good things to say about every facet of his Detroit experience in his few comments about the Lions and Metro Detroit.

He praised the 2021 team for its performance.

"Detroit's a tough out," Stafford said after Sunday's game.

"Always has been. Always will be."

It was time for Stafford and the Lions to part company when he asked to be traded, but there is some strong mutual respect for both sides.

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