Before breaking for their bye week, the Detroit Lions held a practice on Wednesday. After the practice, Lions head coach Jim Schwartz met with the media. You can check out what he had to say below. (Quotes provided by the Lions.)
On if the guys who were sitting out of practice are anything beyond ‘day-to-day': "No, I think that one of the benefits wherever the bye week is, is you're able to put some bumps and bruises behind. But we don't have anything that's long term."
On S Louis Delmas: "He was back to practice. He moved around; he only did individual (drills) today, but he did it at a high level. The key for him is going to be not how he did today, because he did well, it's how he does tomorrow. How the knee responds: if it swells up, if it's stiff, if it's those things, because he had a pretty good workday. It's not a full workday but he did some good things. It's really going to be not what he did today; it's how he responds to what he did today."
On expecting Delmas back for the next game: "Too soon to tell. It's going to depend on how he responds and if he responds well to this, then how he responds through a week of practice. But we're still not even to that point."
On how he and his coaching staff spends the bye week: "There's a lot of stuff. You're never too far away from it. You might take one day off and watch a little league soccer game or something like that. Spend some time with our families, but it's more important for the players. The players are the ones that are physically doing the game. We're never too far away from it. There's no bye week for coaches."
On what his return means to the team: "He's returned to practice. He's not returned any more than practice. So what it meant is that we had one extra DB out there today who's a pretty good player in the past, and he's an important guy for us. But I don't want to get ahead of ourselves. He went through individual on the bye week. We still got a long way to go."
On describing imaginative play for an offense and a defense and what he thinks is most effective in that regard: "We're trying to be effective. We're trying to score points and limit scoring. Our goal is not to be imaginative. Some of the best offenses in the League ran the same five plays all the time. Some people have run a lot of different plays. Some of the best defenses were as simple as can be; play three coverages and one front and a couple blitzes all year. Other ones use a complexity of things. Our goal is to put the ball in the end zone, our goal is to limit scoring and those are the only things that matter to us. We're going to do what's best with the personnel that we have and what fits us the best. Not trying to do a clinic or write a paper."
On what if he is happy with what the offense is doing and just need to do it better or if the strategy needs to be tweaked: "I think we need to execute better in spots. I keep going back to our first drive of the year. It was about as efficient of a drive as you can get. Moving down the field, converting, making plays, until we got to the very last one and threw an interception on it. At the very end, we didn't stay patient and do what we should have done. We've had other times where we've had balls in the end zone and not been able to complete the catch or we've been derailed in a drive with something. We need to execute better and I think when we do that, we'll be very happy with where we are offensively."
On how much it hurts that the defense has not been able to keep other teams pinned down: "Yeah, you know you want to set your offense up in good position, but I think that the name of the game is limiting points. I think the game is maybe a little bit different than it's been. If you're a 6-3 game, field position is incredibly important. It becomes less important the more scores go on, and I think that's just the way the NFL is. We don't have very many three-and-outs this year. I think that's what goes into your point. We have three in the opener, and we've had three in three games since. When you're getting three-and-outs you're going to have good field position. I think that's a little bit more...whether that ball is on the 40 yard line or the nine, we need to have more three-and-outs and when we do, we'll be able to set up for good field position."
On interceptions coming in bunches: "A lot of interceptions come from pass rush. A lot of pass rush comes from game situation; make a team one-dimensional or have a big lead. All those contribute to turnovers, to sacks, to different things like that."
On the pass combination of QB Matthew Stafford and WR Calvin Johnson not having a touchdown together this season and how surprising that fact is: "I think everybody's game plan is starting with, ‘let's try to keep them from doing that.' That's definitely part of the situation. It's not to say that we can't be effective and we can't score on offense. We don't have any goals on how many touchdowns Calvin and Matthew are going to connect for. What we want to do is we want to score. Whether it's Calvin or anybody else, our goal is the get in the end zone and score. We don't play fantasy football. When we're trying to score we don't care who does it."
On if he wants the players taking time during the bye to completely decompress or to come back and be angry about what happened during the first few weeks: "Everybody's different. You can't as a coach dictate people's personality. Some guys internalize things and have a hard time leaving it behind. You want those guys to forget a little bit more. The guys that are maybe a little bit looser, then you want them to remember more. I don't think that you have any message when it comes to the entire team. Each individual's different. The thing that is most important is that our first four are done. The only thing we can do is play our last 12. We can't even play our last 12, we'll play one. We can play Philly (Eagles). That's the only thing that's on our mind. You can dwell too much. You can also, and I don't think we have, but you can also just sort of brush things under the rug. We haven't done either one."
On Stafford's performance so far and him being ranked 21st is dropping his confidence: "The only rating that means anything is that we're 1-3 right now. If he was 158.3 and we were 1-3, we'd feel the same. Again, ratings and power rankings and stats and fantasy football - it is fun for other people. Our job is to win games. We won one out of first three. We need to do better."