Detroit Lions head coach Jim Schwartz did numerous interviews last week and touched on a variety of subjects. Below are the highlights of what he had to say.
On the NFL lockout: "The one thing we can't control and can't worry about is what's going on in the courts and in negotiations. Our job is to be ready when they call. We had the draft to be able to spend a lot of our time on. Now we're spending a lot of time on early-season opponents. We've found a way to keep busy."
On Matthew Stafford: "We need to keep him healthy. That's been the issue. Matt doesn't need to develop anymore. He doesn't need to learn the offense. He doesn't need to work on accuracy or anything. He needs to be out there playing. He played three games for us last year and he left all three games with the lead. (He had) six touchdowns and one interception in the equivalent of about two games. You put those stats over the course of a season and you see how special a player he can be. That's the difference; you won't be a good team for an extended period of time without a good quarterback. We have one with Matt. We just need to keep him on the field."
On the player-organized workouts: "Just watching them on TV and watching them in photos, you could tell how serious the guys are. I mean, this is their job. They don't just do this because I put a schedule out, and I say this is what you have to do. They do it because it's part of their life, and they're football players, and they're always going to train as such."
On what the coaches have been doing during the lockout: "We’ve been spending a lot more time on our first opponents. You always do things on your first opponents, get some things ready so that you’re familiar. We’re familiar with Minnesota, and we’re familiar with Tampa in the opener; we played them late in the season last year. They haven’t really had any changes. But there’s some new opponents like Kansas City. Dallas, we played (in the) later part of the year last year. So there’s a lot of work to be done there, and we can spend our time doing those also."
On saying no to HBO's Hard Knocks: "Well, I really don’t know if it was even offered, but going back to a couple years ago, we’ve always talked that that’s nothing that would really interest us. Training camp’s sort of a special time. Guys are competing, there’s team-building, there’s camaraderie, there’s hard times, there’s happy times. It’s tough. Imagine if you guys had six weeks to earn your job, and you had to compete against a bunch of other guys, and you had to live with them, you had to eat with them. All the different things that could happen. The last thing you need to worry about is a camera coming around and doing interviews and all those different things. No matter how much those guys are around, it changes the whole dynamic. When I talk to a player, he’s going to view it differently if there’s a camera sitting right there, recording what we’re talking about. Maybe I’m going to say it different than if it was just private. If I’m speaking to the team, maybe I’m going to come across a little bit different. It changes the whole dynamic. I understand the entertainment level of football, but I think we’ll leave the entertainment to Sundays at 1 o'clock rather than training camp and all those things that should be left private."
For more from the interviews, check out these links: