Below is a look at what Detroit Lions head coach Jim Caldwell had to say on Friday. (Quotes provided by the Lions.)
On captains for this week: "Matthew (Stafford), Mathis (Rashean) and Collins (Jed)."
On if DE Jason Jones will be available: "He's practicing today."
On CB Cassius Vaughn's play lately: "Cassius has made some plays for us. He's done a lot of good things. He's a veteran guy that's been around. He's given us some experience at that spot, that's helped us."
On what the benefits are of covering TE Rob Gronkowski with a cornerback: "Not many, he'll run over you. That's the big thing here, you're talking about a size issue. You've seen it a number of times, some of those guys get flexed out there a little bit and he's able to overpower you with his size and strength. If you get a guy out there that's a smaller guy, he can body position you quite a bit. He's proven that there's not the ideal body type unless you can find a guy as big as he is or somewhat similar in size, a linebacker type that can run or a strong safety. Those are the kinds of best matchups with him otherwise he'll give you some problems."
On if having two versatile safeties presents a decent matchup against Gronkowski: "With him you have to do a little bit of everything. If you leave it the same, he can expect certain things every time he's in. He'll be able to adjust to that, so we have to mix it up a little bit."
On how important S James Ihedigbo has been to the defense and how important he thinks this game is to him: "In my mind, I forgot about it (Ihedigbo playing for New England). He was only there one year. You don't take roots in one year, typically. It's a bit quicker. In my mind, he was there a lot longer. He and I were talking yesterday, but nevertheless, obviously that's part of the country where he's from out east. I do think that every game is big for him, you just know him as a competitor. He doesn't care who it is that we're playing, they all mean the same in that he wants to try to find a way to win. I think he's approaching this game the same way."
On how much they have to be prepared for RB LeGarrette Blount being plugged in the offense immediately: "I think there's certainly a possibility because he can get up to speed with what they were doing. That's their recall in those regards, particularly for veteran players is minimal. So, I'm assuming that he may be up and running. But, Jonas Gray is doing a pretty good job too so we better be concerned about him as well."
On what difficulties Patriots RB Shane Vereen presents: "He's obviously just a little bit type of back, doesn't necessarily mean he can't run with power but he's also got speed and quickness. He's a threat out the backfield in terms of a receiver as well."
On if there was a common theme that allowed him to win games against the Patriots in the past: "Not really, they were all kind of formed and shaped differently. Each and every one had its own unique sort of take to it because obviously you're dealing with different players and different eras. I would say no nothing really consistent. I remember a couple games where (Tom) Brady in the first half was literally unstoppable. He's up and down the field on us quite a bit and then sometimes things change a little bit, we ended up matching up pretty well. It all took different shape and form depending upon the situation. Some of it was weather, some of it was just players overcoming situations and playing well down the stretch, but nothing that I can put my finger on."
On what the team gets from mimicking the elements of Foxborough: "The big thing is that it gives you a chance to get acclimated catching the ball in that kind of weather. Although today is a bit different than it was back in the old days when no one wore gloves. It was even bigger to practice in the elements and get a sense and a feel for it. Now your hands don't get as slick with the gloves and guys are able to function in that realm. Just being able to deal with the temperature as is and we tried to do that last week. Obviously we cranked it up to 75 degrees or so we felt that we would play in those elements during game time. This week the same thing holds true and I just think it gives guys a feel for the whole process, warming up, getting ready and getting accustomed to that temperature."
On if the team needs to make adjustments with the Buffalo Bills coming in to practice at the Lions' practice facility: "No, not for us. We're glad to be able to help their situation when they're in need of a place to practice. This league, we're all intertwined with one another, so it's great to have an opportunity to give them some assistance."
On how much he has to remind the defense to be ready for a quarterback sneak at any time: "He's (Tom Brady) is the best in the business at it. He's proven that time and time again. With him, he mastered everything that he does. He's mastered the cadence, he's mastered no huddle, he's mastered the quarterback sneak, he's mastered delivery and all of those areas just through years and years of practicing. And he's talented, there's not anything that this guy can't do well. If he catches you sleeping at any point in time, he can take advantage of you."
On how much the pace of the Patriots disrupts what the Lions like to do in terms of rotation: "It makes you look at things differently. They keep a pace and that's the big thing about no-huddle, it'll keep you from substituting as much as you'd like. They do some things to insure that, so that's always a big challenge."
On how many conversations he's had with his players on the hype that surrounds them or the opponents they're facing: "Not particular verbiage, but we respect everybody that we play. It's not a matter of guys being afraid or apprehensive or anything of that nature. They're all good teams in this league. Everybody has talent and as you saw last night, both teams are talented teams and you never know what the outcome is going to be."
On his thought process when determining weekly captains: "It depends. What we try and do is just make certain that the guys get an opportunity, that our leaders on our team get a chance to express themselves. And going out and representing us at the coin toss and things of that nature and dealing with penalties and so on and so forth, but nothing more than that."
On the Patriots offensive line: "They've stepped up and have done a tremendous job, I think, all across the board. They're playing probably as well as any offensive line in the League right now. They're averaging 40-some odd points right in their last six games, so you know they're doing their job. One hundred ninety-nine yards rushing is a formidable feat."