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Lions quotes: Thursday's comments from Jim Schwartz, Scott Linehan

Quotes from Jim Schwartz and Scott Linehan's media session after Thursday's Detroit Lions practice.

Harry How

Below is a look at what Detroit Lions head coach Jim Schwartz and offensive coordinator Scott Linehan had to say after Thursday's practice. (Quotes provided by the Lions.)


On WR Calvin Johnson: "I don't have any updates on him. You saw what you saw. Just like before, he's working hard to get better every day. We'll see where we get to when we get to Sunday."

On if any assumptions can be made about Johnson since he practiced today and not last Thursday: "Probably not. It's just going to depend on how he feels when we get to game day. He's no different than 45 or 46 other guys when it comes that. When we make those determinations, we don't make them on Wednesdays or Thursdays or even Fridays. He had a bunch of times last year where he didn't practice at all and went out and played on Sunday. Last week he practiced on a Friday and wasn't able to go out there on Sunday. We'll just take it as it comes."

On how good is WR Kevin Ogletree is: "It still has yet to be seen. He did a good job when he's been presented opportunities in the game and that was on short notice. He's continued to do that in practice. We'd expect that from him. He's a young veteran who has made some plays in the past. It's more about just getting comfortable and the terminology and things like that. He's got a lot of physical talent. We have seen that on the field. We saw it with Dallas. In limited times, saw it with Tampa."

On the criteria that goes in to signing players: "That honestly doesn't start during the season. That's our pro personnel department that works year round on stuff like that. Even guys that aren't free agents, they continually grade players from other teams. That grade is reflective on how they're playing with one team, but it is also reflective of how they would fit with us. There are going to be times where you are going to have to go to waivers or trades or picking up guys that have been released. You have to be able to plug those guys in and play. There are going to be situations where you are not going to be at full strength over the course of the year. That's not a last minute decision. There is a lot of work that goes in on a yearly basis to stuff like that."

On TE Joseph Fauria being a contributor over the course of the last few weeks: "I wouldn't say the last few weeks. I think Joe, since the time he's been here, has impressed us and made plays when given the opportunity. His role hasn't been a real big and there's potential for more of that. We'll just have to wait and see on Sunday. He's got the confidence of the coaching staff. He's done a good job. He's young. Like a lot of young players, there are some inconsistencies that he is working on to improve on. He certainly has talent to be able to make plays. We have seen that in red zone a few times."

On any similarities between the Browns defense and the Packers defense: "A little bit. There is a little bit of scheme stuff. Personnel are totally different. Obviously, they are different teams. They each have branched off in to their own flavor a little bit. I think the familiarity really comes from Arizona last year and some of the things they did because Ray Horton was their coordinator. I think we have a little bit more, scheme-wise have continuity from last year rather than what we saw last week."

On the Arizona film from last year being reviewed to uncover similarities with the defense or does it not matter: "I think there are different dynamics also. I mean, Arizona has Patrick Peterson. Cleveland has Joe Haden. They have done a good job. Personnel is different. Every coach is going to use their personnel a little bit different. We certainly take all the games in to effect, even going back to our preseason game. Even though, and I keep repeating that, when typically teams play each other in the preseason they are going to be a little extra vanilla. We're always sort of vanilla in the preseason, but even a little extra so. I think the thing we take out of the preseason game is just the talent of players, matchups, and things like that."


On what WR Calvin Johnson brings to the offense: "He does a lot of things obviously. For eight weeks last year we were on the same kind of play where he was dealing with something that was bothering him, didn't practice a lot and was able get it to the Sunday squad. He just wasn't ready. We had a contingency plan for it and it certainly helps to have him out there, that's the understatement of the day. Regardless of whether he is out there or not, we have other guys that have to be able to step up and do things for us. We saw some growth on some people. We brought a guy (WR Kevin Ogletree) in on Thursday that had basically six plays and he had two catches, almost three, so there is going to be opportunities for other people when Calvin is not out there. Hopefully we have him back out there again, he is making progress I'm sure but we are planning on other guys stepping up if he's not on the field or whether he is suited up or not, the other guy has to be ready to go."

On if it is a big adjustment for the offense if Johnson does not play: "The opportunities are going to be more. I don't know if it is an adjustment but I think it should be a welcomed adjustment for them. That's the one thing I was really happy with, especially going into last week's game, other guys were able to step in and have very big roles in our three wins. What we're looking at is some new guys on the team. WR Ryan Broyles, we hadn't planned on him playing in the month of September. He has done a nice job of stepping in and playing a little earlier than expected because of what happened to Nate (Burleson). We bring in Kevin last week, he misses Wednesday but comes out here Thursday and it's like ‘Hey I know you're not going to know everything but we are going to give you 10 things' and I thought he handled that well. I really think (Brandon) Pettigrew has stepped up and been a real solid contributor for us. Matt (Stafford) has done a really nice job of leaning on him some too. As we move forward I think it will help us over the long run of having these guys with bigger roles. When Calvin is full force this week or whenever, we will have guys that got some significant time for us."

On the contingency plan if TE Tony Scheffler cannot play Sunday: "Lean a little more on the receivers. G Dylan Gandy says he can catch. I'll try that. He snaps the ball good. He holds on to it (laughs). We will probably lean a little more on the receiving groups. We don't have three tight ends on the field that often. As long as we stay relatively healthy there we shouldn't have any issues being able to operate with what we have been doing."

On if bringing WR Ryan Broyles back earlier than expected is why his targets have gone down: "No, it had nothing to do with him. This is about the time, this week, is the time we were looking at. He came and played his first game against Chicago. It was a very similar time and it has nothing to with whether he was ready or not. You saw us playing him some in preseason, we knew he was ready to play, it was just a matter of how much we were going to play him. I thought the first game was a good number, his number went up about ten the next game, went up about ten last game. I think he's ready for a full load now as far as what you want to do as far as bringing a guy back. He is right on track and we have been real happy that he has got this time to progress. Certainly if someone else's availability isn't available he will be leaned on a little bit more."

On Broyles' comeback being expedited because of WR Nate Burleson's injury: "He played a little more than he would have at this point. Not because he wasn't ready it was more Nate was doing his thing. That's the way it works. You have to have depth at receiver and know that you're not going to have everybody and every position available throughout a 16 game season. He's been ready to go we are just asking a lot of more of him at this point in the season than we probably would have had Nate not got injured."

On it being the second year his receivers have been banged up: "I was just telling someone the other day that we were really lucky in 2011, we didn't have a receiver miss a game. We were fortunate then but we are dealing with what every team has to deal with at some point. Some position is going to get affected by guys getting banged up. We've been bringing guys in, some guys have moved up the ladder and that's the way it works. I am excited for their opportunities that they might not have had. You build your depth through a guy being banged up for a few weeks. You give a guy significant playing time for a few weeks and you know what you got there and then you have someone with experience if someone can't go again."

On if TE Joseph Fauria's role will increase: "I think Fauria's role increases. He is going to play more than he has to this point. He is on track to do great things for us too. He is a young player but he has certainly played really good football for us and will play more snaps for us as we move forward."

On if Fauria has been more of a red zone target and if that is why he hasn't seen a lot of targets: "We only had one play in the red zone last week so it's some with that. We had him in some third down but the coverage dictates where the ball goes there. He hasn't been on the field as much as he probably will be so you will see some more play out of Joe."

On the Browns defense: "They are playing as well as all around defensive football as anyone in the League right now. Top ten in everything, top five in a couple. They are a tough challenge and they have limited scoring chances and played really physical football. We saw a lot of that when we played them in the preseason so we know the challenge that we're faced with and our guys are excited to have another opportunity against one of the best defenses in football."

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