After a devastating (and somewhat controversial) loss to the Green Bay Packers on Monday Night Football, the Detroit Lions have to turn it around pretty quick on a short week to prepare for their second straight division game.
Head coach Matt Patricia addressed the media Tuesday, saying he is focused on what his team can do to improve as opposed to worrying about what calls should or should not have been made Monday night in Green Bay.
“I think if you go through a game and you’re relying on the officials to tell you whether or not you won, I don’t really think you’re going to turn out in a favorable manner more times than not," he said.
“So for us, it’s about trying to go out and do the things that we can control to win the game and do that better.”
The big focus for the Lions this week is finishing, whether that's drives or games. The team is coming off two close losses in which they couldn't make the plays late to win or sustain drives throughout the game to score more points.
“It’s definitely something we have to do a better job of, absolutely,” Patricia said. “We understand there’s a lot of factors that go into closing out a game. Some of it happens earlier in the game and some of it happens later, but that’s part of the process right now of trying to improve as a football team and identify some areas we think we can get better at.
“For us, that’s part of the work, that’s part of the improvement.”
PREPARING FOR THE VIKINGS
After a slow start to their season, the Minnesota Vikings are rolling on both sides of the ball heading into Sunday's matchup at Ford Field.
“I feel good about the last two weeks,” Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer said in a conference-call interview with the Detroit media. “In this league, every week is a new week. We have to continue to play the way we’re playing.
“We still have a lot of mistakes that we need to clean up. We had too many penalties in both of the last two games. We fumbled the ball in the last two games.
“Detroit is always a tough place to play. It’s always a team in our division that’s always a fight when we play them, and they are really good on both sides of the ball.”
The Vikings may be a familiar opponent for the Lions, but that doesn't make preparing for them any easier.
“Obviously, those guys communicate really well,” quarterback Matthew Stafford said. “They play well off of each other. They have on all three levels of the defense – both up front, in the linebacking corps and the secondary.
“I turn the tape on, and it’s almost like the same thing every year. I’m watching the same guys playing at an extremely high level. It doesn’t seem like anybody is dropping off. If anything, they’re getting better. They’re a really talented defense.
“They’re a really tough challenge for us.”
For Mike O'Hara's full scouting report on the Vikings, click here.
View photos from Detroit Lions practice on Friday, Oct. 18, 2019.
OTHER NOTEWORTHY ITEMS
- Click here for the full Lions-Vikings injury report with game designations for Sunday's contest.
- How can the Lions' offense improve in the red zone? Tim Twentyman covers that and more in his latest 10 Questions column.
- To celebrate NFL 100, the Lions are sitting down with some of the most loyal, longtime fans. Meet superfan Sweta Patel.
- View photos of wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. surprising the Detroit Youth Choir at their Ford Field rehearsal.
- Catch up on all the news from Darrell Bevell and Paul Pasqualoni's Tuesday media sessions.