After going 0-2 to start the season, the Detroit Lions have some work to do to turn it around.
“For us, it’s week-by-week, that’s the way we have to look at it,” head coach Matt Patricia said Monday. “I can’t predict the future, I can’t tell you what’s going to happen two months from now. But, what we have to do right now is fix the mistakes that we made yesterday and get ready to play another game this week.”
It won't get any easier for the Lions this week with the New England Patriots coming to town for Sunday Night Football at Ford Field, especially considering they may be without starting cornerback Darius Slay.
Slay left Sunday's game in San Francisco with a concussion. He sat out practice Wednesday and Thursday, but returned Friday as a limited participant. He's officially listed as questionable on the report.
"I’d say from his standpoint of him as a player, he does a good job with his coverage technique," Patricia said of Slay. "He’s real patient at the line of scrimmage, he’s long. He has good length, speed. I would say his reactionary quickness is outstanding. So, those are things that just make a corner really good. He studies the game a lot. We’re in a bunch of different packages, a bunch of different groups.
"And the great thing about him is he has an unbelievable confidence that he’s going to go out there and execute at a high level, which you need when you play that position."
The Lions brought cornerback DeShawn Shead back Wednesday, so he'll be available to help fill the void if Slay can't go.
PREPARING FOR PATRIOTS
This week's opponent is a very familiar one for head coach Matt Patricia. Patricia was the defensive coordinator in New England from 2012-2017. Sunday he'll be squaring off against his friend and former coworker, Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels.
“Josh and I are really close,” Patricia said Wednesday. “Josh and I worked together for a long time from the moment I arrived in New England. He and I were on the offensive side of the ball together (in 2004-05) really trying to figure a lot of things out, he as a young position coach, myself as a quality control coach.
“I think the two of us leaned on each other quite a bit, helped each other out a lot as young coaches and developing into wherever we are right now. So, utmost respect for him.”
Even though there will be plenty of reunions between Patricia and his former team, Sunday is about the game, not any personal connections.
“It’s about the Patriots and the Lions,” Patriots head coach Bill Belichick said in a conference call Wednesday. “Each of us has a part in the game, obviously. I have all the respect in the world for Matt. Mrs. Ford (Lions owner Martha Firestone Ford), who I worked for. Great people in the Lions organization.
“In the end, it’s about the two teams competing. That’s what it’s about. Hopefully, we can go out there and do a good job. That’s what we’re going to try to do.”
For Mike O'Hara's full scouting report on the Patriots, click here.
OTHER NOTEWORTHY ITEMS
- Wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. opens up about his personal interests and goals in the premier episode of Under the Helmet.
- Tim Twentyman takes a look at three early impact performers for each team in the NFC North.
- See how play action helped spring wide receiver Kenny Golladay for a 30-yard touchdown.
- Catch up on all the news from Jim Bob Cooter and Paul Pasqualoni's Tuesday conference calls.
- Watch guard T.J. Lang sit down with rookie offensive lineman Frank Ragnow for the first episode of Talkin' with T.J.'s second season.