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Lions quotes: Chris Houston talks about re-signing with Detroit

Comments from Detroit Lions cornerback Chris Houston's press conference.

Below is a look at what Detroit Lions cornerback Chris Houston had to say during his press conference earlier this week. (Quotes provided by the Lions.)

On if he had any doubts about returning to the Lions: "Of course you sit around and you think what's going to happen, but you know where you want to be at and you know where you want to belong because you're so familiar with the people here, (including) the coaches. I've progressed here. I know the defense and the people around here treat me like family. I think that was huge. You know the business side of it, but you also know where your heart is and I just wanted to be back here."

On if he talked to any other teams: "Not really. My main focus was trying to get the best deal here and try to come back here."

On if his familiarity with the Lions helped make his deal easier: "Most definitely because of the coaching staff. I didn't really want to be with a new coaching staff and the scheme fits my game. Coach Schwartz, coach Gunther Cunningham and coach Rob (Marcus Robertson) now, since Tim Walton is gone, pretty much know my strengths and my weaknesses. This is somewhere where I think my game has excelled and, you know, I don't want to go nowhere else where the scheme might not fit me because some players go different places. So, I wanted to go somewhere where I was familiar with what the scheme was."

On the Lions' free agent signings yesterday: "I'm a fan of the game and I've been a fan of Reggie Bush since college since he was burning us when I was at Arkansas. We played him when I was at the Falcons and he was with the New Orleans Saints. So, I was always overwhelmed with what he can do on the football field. I was sitting there thinking with him, Calvin Johnson and Matt (Stafford), I was thinking of something like the St. Louis Rams with Marshall Faulk and they had those good wide receivers. I'm just thinking about how special our offense can be with him.

"Glover Quin, he's a good safety. I've heard nothing but good things about him since I'm from Austin, Texas and he was playing in Houston. He's a good guy. I've heard nothing but great things about him. I watched him on film and he can be a great guy for us back there. The defensive tackle (Jason Jones) I haven't really got to know him on that level, but I'm looking forward to being a teammate of his."

On how having Quin at safety can help him at cornerback: "He can cover the field, he can make plays, he looks like a leader out there on the field. That's definitely something we'll have to have since we've got our younger guys back there. He, along with myself, has to be a leader and he's basically around the ball most of the time. The majority of the time I've seen him when he was with the Texans."

On how his expanded role on defense last year contributed to his re-signing: "It helped my game a lot because I had to study harder. I had to know my opponent in and out and it helped my preparation week in and week out. When I prepare during the week, I don't really go out. I watch film day in day out and visualize those things that receivers do. I was able to play good against top receivers. Houston Texans, I think I had a pretty good game. During the Eagles with DeSean Jackson, I think I had a pretty good game. It just helps your confidence, but it helps you focus more throughout the week because you know that you're on the number one wide receiver and everybody's watching. So, it helps your game be on point."

On if he feels as if he has more of a leadership role coming into next season: "No doubt, because I'm going to be the veteran in the room. Those guys are going to look up to me like Bill Bentley. I text him still and talk to him through text. Jonte Green, those guys look up to me. So, I'm going to have to be more of a leader. But my leadership is more of going out and showing them by that mentality. Not so much talking. I think Louis (Delmas) was much more of a talker and he also showed it on the field. My thing was showing Bill Bentley if he needed to get better on a certain technique, then I've just got to go out there and do it and show him how I get better by just doing it over repetitiously."

On his faith in last year's rookies in the secondary: "A lot of faith. As a rookie, you come in, you really don't know what's expected in the NFL, how teams are going to attack you. You know you're going to get the ball thrown at you. That's one thing that I think those guys got a great experience by starting early because now they know their strengths and weaknesses and how teams are going to attack them. Now they can work on that in the offseason."

On if he ever pictured he would spend this many years in Detroit: "No, not at all. When I came to Detroit, I just wanted to get somewhere where the coaches would let me play to my strengths. I don't think when I was in Atlanta I got to play to those strengths. But the coaches here got me to play to my strengths and I got better each year. Even if the numbers don't say it from last year to the year before, I got better each year with some things that I've done. I can still get better. My thing was to come here and take it one year at a time and better my game and try to help the team out."

On his journey from people doubting him when he came to Detroit to now being one of the top cornerbacks on the market: "I knew that if I put the work in and I get to the right place that I potentially could be one of the best corners in the League. I could potentially be one of the consistent corners in the League. I just had to get to the right place with the right coaching staff. I got here, I knew what I needed to work on and the coaches, they really didn't have to tell me anything. I just worked day in, day out, stayed after practice, last one after practice. Offseason, I do a lot of stuff at home by myself whether it was running around the neighborhood looking up for the ball, without a ball. I do a lot of that. I just knew that if I could get somewhere where I'm comfortable, there's not a lot of blame getting put on me for things that probably I didn't even do, that I could potentially start busting out of shell and become that consistent player. I was able to come here and God blessed me to come to a coaching staff that understood my game and helped me succeed."

On where he feels the defense has to be better this season: "Chemistry. One thing I see with a lot playoff teams, they're more of a brotherhood. I think because of free agents we had last year, so many guys that didn't know where they were going to be and the chemistry wasn't there like it was the year before when we went to the playoffs. Hand-in-hand, defense is played together. D-line goes with the linebackers, linebackers go with the secondary, D-Line helps the secondary out with providing pressure on the quarterback and us making plays. I think if we can get back to that chemistry where everybody's on one accord on the defensive side of the ball, then there will be great things to come like when we made the playoffs and had all those interceptions a couple years before."

On having dependability in the secondary: "Definitely, because with guys getting injured, you have to go find another guy who probably hasn't played in the system back there trying to give you calls or maybe not in the area he's supposed to be in. It kind of affects the defense. But when you have a player that's going to be there all 16 games, you get to learn that player. You get to talk to him if you see something on defense and you want to take a chance, you know his ability to get to where you want him to be. I think that's very big as far as having that stability because if you have somebody new that comes in there, you're not able to take the chances you can to make plays on the field."

On if he can ever get comfortable when a team is forced to start different combinations in the secondary: "You just try to do the best you can. You really don't have time to think. But as being comfortable with them, you're not as comfortable with them because you get so used to Louis (Delmas) and (Amari) Spievey and then you understand those guys and those guys understand you. Then to have somebody else come in, you really don't know what their ability is. You've just got to do the best you can and just go out and play. So, there really wasn't any time to think. It was time to get them prepared for the game and I was out there on the field telling them, helping them with what they were supposed to do. But when you have that chemistry back there with a safety, like you said, who is going to be there 16 games and understands the defense, then it's much easier for you as a cornerback."

On what the difference for this team will be compared to last year: "Getting good players in the locker room. I think we had a lot of distractions last year on the offensive side of the ball. Like I said, there were so many free agents on the defensive side of the ball and the chemistry wasn't there. I think upstairs they're doing a great job of getting guys in here who are about football and good guys, mainly, in the locker room. Once you have that and guys are on one accord, the sky's the limit. I don't think that was the case last year."


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