Lions Quotes: Jim Schwartz Comments On Wednesday's Practice

Below is a look at what Detroit Lions head coach Jim Schwartz had to say following Wednesday's practice. (Quotes provided by the Lions.)

On whether or not the starters will play longer than a half this Saturday against the Raiders: "Well we'll have a plan for playing and it's not going to be exact number of snaps, or a half or more than a half. We'll just sort of take it as it comes. We want to play well; we want to win the game. Those are the No.1 and No. 2 objectives."

On looking at the second half of the preseason as a dress rehearsal: "They're all dress rehearsals to some extent. I know this much: we're not going to go through an entire game. So you know we'll be somewhere less than that.

"There's a lot things that you can accomplish and not all of them have to do with play time. There are situations you want to look at guys - you want to put them in certain spots and see how they do. You want to you know see (it) run efficiently on offense, defense, special teams and keep the mistakes down and things like that. Those are the important things to us."

On planning as if RB Mikel Leshoure will play this Saturday: "He's on track to so hopefully we can keep him on that track."

On the defensive line being more dominant this year: "It needs to be: play well enough for us to win the game. I think I'd go back to what we talk about offensively: you don't get any more points for rushing as you do for passing. The idea is to score and move the ball efficiently and all those things. On defense, we have to play good defense, and that's all three levels.

"We have a lot of talent upfront, we expect a lot from those guys but we need to worry about being ourselves and playing consistently from week-to-week."

On the progression of the defense throughout the preseason: "You know we've done a pretty good job of holding people out of the end zone. We haven't done a whole lot on defense. You know very few blitzes - we're not a huge blitz team but we blitz a little bit. But we haven't game planned and things like that. But it is good to see when teams start to move the ball a little bit we're finding a way to get the drive stopped. That's an important aspect to playing defense so there's definitely things that we're pleased with but as a group, as a unit, we're still a work in progress and we'll continue to be."

On the continuity along the offensive line: "Well I think that we've put some pretty good players in place there. We have them in roles that fits them. And as a result, you're not looking to make changes all the time. We've got a couple guys that are getting up there in years and we've had to make some replacements due to some injury situations here and there. But guys fit their roles well, guys know what to do; they've played together for a fairly long time, even before I got here a few years ago. I think that knowing how the guys play next to you is really important for offensive line, it's really important for secondary and we have a lot of experience there. It's been a time thing, but's it's developed over time mainly because you don't have to replace a lot of those guys; they've played well in their roles."

On getting DT Nick Fairley ready for the regular season: "Just needs to play more reps. You know every time that we've tried to get him on the field for extended periods of time he hasn't been able to stay out there. He's done a good job of his conditioning, he's worked hard, he's ran well; he just needs to be on the field more."

On the value of a veteran like LB Stephen Tulloch when trying to develop young linebackers: "Well Tulloch, (Justin) Durant... I think Durant's leadership and his experience is a little bit underestimated. But those two guys definitely bring a lot to the table and you know allows guys like you know Travis (Lewis) and (Tahir) Whitehead to pick things up and to learn - even Doug Hogue from last year. Levy is still a young player, but he's a very savvy guy; he's a smart player and he brings some leadership to us too. From the time he was a rookie, he's always had very good attention to detail and he gives those young guys a good role model also."

On the trust he has in K Jason Hanson: "In four years I don't know that he's ever not said, ‘I'm ready.' There have been some where we figure in pregame, ‘Hey we're good from 55' or from 56 and we might have one from 58 and look at him and he just nods and goes out. He's old school that way. He's just going to go out on the field and do his job. He's had a very long career because he's been consistent and he's risen to challenges along the way."

On several defensive line members (Sammie Hill, Corey Williams, Kyle Vanden Bosch and Andre Fluellen) being back to practice today and if any will play this weekend: "We'll see when we get to Saturday with those guys, but they're all in a good progression. You know we're starting to get into; we're sort of out of a training camp mode. We're not quite in a regular season mode; we're somewhere in between right now. Seeing those guys be able to get back on the field; the wear and tear of training camp can start to be behind some of those guys."

On the upcoming roster cuts making it a hard time of year for the players: "Always. The best players that I've been around have always had that sort of fear in the back of their mind. You know, ‘If I don't perform I'm not going to be here.' There's some great players that have felt that way. I think we talked a couple weeks ago about how Calvin has pretty much got a spot locked up but he goes out and works everyday as if he's trying to make the team. I'm sure Calvin doesn't go to bed at night sitting there saying, ‘Hey I wonder what kind of decision is going to be made,' but he goes out and works as if that was hanging over his head. Players can't worry about that stuff. They can't count numbers, they can't you know look across the league, or get discouraged or anything else. They just need to worry about going out and getting a little bit better today than they were yesterday. And if they're a better football player, then its mission accomplished. They can't control a lot of other things and they can only worry about getting better and performing well."

On the development of S Ricardo Silva: "Obviously much more comfortable in the defense and that comes from not only training camp last year and this year but also a season on the practice squad and being out there practicing every day and in the meetings. He's a very hard worker. He's always made plays when we put him on the field but I think he's taken a big step in his just general knowledge of defense and special teams. He's improving."

On the plans for G Bill Nagy: "Yeah I think I covered that didn't I? Yeah I think I covered it, you'll have to go back."

On expecting WR Ryan Broyles to make an impact in his rookie season: "We expect all our players to be able to make plays - I don't know why we wouldn't. He's coming back from an injury, but he's done well through his injury and every day he gets a little bit better physically. He's got a lot of rookie sort of growing and stuff like that but he's shown good positive signs that he can make a play."

On DE Ronnell Lewis on special teams: "That's an important role for him. He did a nice job of it at Oklahoma. He needs to do that same thing. We have a good depth chart at defensive end and even though he's shown some really good things, he going to have to be able to play special teams for us in order to be able to get on the field."

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