Below is a look at what Detroit Lions head coach Jim Caldwell had to say on Friday. (Quotes provided by the Lions.)
Opening Statement: "First thing, I know you typically ask the questions about captains. (LaAdrian) Waddle is going to be our offensive captain, George Johnson will be our defensive captain, and special teams will be Jeremy Ross."
On if DT Nick Fairley will be able to return this season: "Probably the same answer I gave before, he's still in the evaluation process. He's had a couple evaluations and the doctors have stressed that rest and hopefully some healing will give a little clear picture of what should be done. Right now it's a non-surgical procedure at this point and we'll see how it goes."
On how DT C.J. Mosley has looked in practice this week: "Obviously Nick is a great talent but C.J. has been playing all along for us in there. He's been in the rotation, starter earlier in the season, but nevertheless I think he'll be fine. I think our rotation with the guys inside, Caraun Reid is going to have to play a little bit more. Those guys I think do a great job of getting ready for the ball game and I think they'll be up for the task."
On how DE Darryl Tapp held up being in the rotation at defensive tackle: "Yes more or less it was, he's done it before. Obviously just in terms of his ability to kind of move at different spots, adapt, and adjust. He can adapt better than anybody because of his body type and he's a smart guy as well. That was one of those things at that particular point in time because of what our situation was with our numbers. Sometimes you have to do things you hadn't done previously. It's one of those things that happens, sometimes when you're going through a game when you're a little shorthanded sometimes you got to do some things you're not quite ready for. We had to adjust."
On how much confidence it gives him when players like Tapp and Reid step in and perform well: "Jason Jones as well, we have a number of guys. George (Johnson) has been in there during his career as well, so we have a number of guys that could carry that out pretty well. I think the nature of the spot in particular is that you're playing in edge one way or another. Either it's inside or outside, five techniques, or it's a three technique, or it's a shade. Basically you're still looking at the same type of blocks, you're just one man removed maybe from the center. It's a lot of carry over and the biggest thing is that you deal with is the size difference. That's the difference of the position, the techniques and fundamentals that they work are all the same."
On if playing next to DT Ndamukong Suh makes it easier for whoever steps in at the other DT position: "I think he gives you a chance to anticipate that they won't get doubled team as much as the normal guy would in that spot. They'll still get double teamed sometimes but often times they pay a lot of attention to him. Single blocked he can be quite disruptive and he's disruptive sometimes with double teams. I think that is without question a factor."
On if Tapp stays in the rotation or if DT Andre Fluellen will see playing time: "Flue is another one of those guys that is very versatile, inside, outside, and he hadn't missed a beat. He really came into practice and did extremely well so we're certainly happy to be able to get him."
On if he feels confident that any of the three injured tight ends will play on Sunday: "Hopefully. In particular when you're dealing with injuries I think you guys all well know that every single day is a little bit different. They may practice one day but it depends on how they feel the next day. What kind of load that they've took on and so every day is kind of a monitoring situation to see how they do the next. We're in that phase right now so we'll have to see who ends up being able to go come game day."
On if TE Joseph Fauria is the closest tight end to be ready for Sunday's game: "I wouldn't say that. I wouldn't give you an indication of who is, but they're all working and we'll see."
On Fauria practicing for two consecutive days and what it means in terms potentially playing on Sunday: "Today is another day. Let's see what happens today."
On the offense's ability to control the clock and how much it's helped the defense: "When you look at it, you can look at it a couple of different ways. We've played defense well enough to get three and outs and the offense only holds the ball a short period of time, thus it gives your offense a few more opportunities, obviously. And then on the other side of that is, we've been able to extend drives, particularly towards the end of games. That has made a big difference, I think in some ball games. So, I think anytime you can win the time of possession it's a positive factor for your team."
On how the defense will adjust without Fairley: "Obviously, every inch is important and I think it's very tough to quantify that one as you look at it. There's a lot of different factors involved, when he's in the game, what's going on when he's in the game, those kinds of things. You could look at that from a number of different vantage points and probably could come up with a little bit of a different conclusion. But we'll do what we've always done, but this team is going to force us to do some things a little different because the offensive system that we're facing is quite a bit different than what we've seen previously. So, you may come to see things that you haven't seen to this point that we'll do defensively just to counteract what they do. The adjustments that are made won't be necessarily because of a lack of Nick being in there, but it also may be schematic in that sense."
On the Dolphins' success in the running game, led by RB Lamar Miller: "Yeah, he's having a great year. He's got speed, has vision, he's strong and they do a great job of getting the looks that they want to run against and being able to perform really well. It always helps schematically when you do have another bona fide threat that's handing it to you, that can hold one defender at bay. That's what they have been able to certainly excel at and thus, given him cracks to run and seams to hit. When he gets them, he can go. He's got a really good feel for what they do. He's a very good runner, talented. He's a problem."
On the concern of forcing the ball to WR Calvin Johnson on Sunday: "We never really go into a game with forcing the ball to him in mind, but he'll get his share and we hope that they are significant when he does get them. He's a guy that we rely on, depend on, but I do think Matthew (Stafford) has a really good sense of reading through his progression, his keys and when he's open, he'll give it to him. When he's not, he'll go somewhere else. I think his development so far within the passing game, having to rely on Golden (Tate) a little bit more and some other guys, he's spread it around five, six, seven people per game. I think you'll see that continue."
On how much the offense has missed Fauria: "I think that there are very few guys who really affect the game like a Calvin does. He affects the game in that regard. I anticipate that it's still the way in which most of our opponents will look at that as well. Joe does give us some options if he does play. We try to utilize everybody's strengths where we can and where it makes sense. He (Fauria) has some unusual traits that if he's playing for us he gives us an opportunity to maybe run some things. Not saying we don't run them with other people, but I think he does give you a little bit different vantage point. You can't coach height and extension, which is what he has that is natural."
On the biggest improvement he's seen from WR Corey Fuller: "Pretty much everything. You can tell that he's growing and developing within the scheme. I think he has a better feel for it, he's very active and he's a studious young man. In terms of route awareness, spatial awareness, I think he's progressing nicely. He works at it extremely hard. I think the best thing that he has done, is that he has taken it upon himself to attach himself to Calvin. He does whatever Calvin does. If I were him I would do exactly the same thing. He follows him around in terms of his regimen in the morning. When they're working during the offseason he was right there next to him, his stretch routine he's right there with him. What it is is that you very rarely get an opportunity to study under the best at his craft in the business. The fact of the matter is, we try to push every single one of our young guys to do just that but not all of them do. Particularly, taking the advice of veterans that have been in the league nine or 10 years, guys like Reggie (Bush), guys that have been around the block, Rashean Mathis, those guys can teach you some things that will help you skip a couple bad experiences because of their knowledge. I have to commend Corey, he's done just that and been tremendous in that area. I think you're going to see it's going to pay huge dividends for this guy down the stretch. He hasn't even scratched the surface where he's going to be but I'll tell you, I'm impressed with him. He works hard."
On if that includes how Johnson handles himself off the field as well: "I'm not certain that he goes home with him. I'm assuming Calvin's social life is his social life. I'm not quite certain he's like a Mini-Me or anything like that, but nevertheless, in terms of how he handles himself in terms of the public and things that he does outside of the building are things that I'm certain that Corey probably takes note of."
On if rookies will eventually become captains this season: "We won't get to rookies, that's for certain. That's the thing that is unique about our team, we just have so many leaders. That's why it would be, to me, a bit unfair to just simply use three guys for the entire year. We have too many guys that have too much to share. So, I like to use every bit of leadership potential that we have on our team. You'll see it back and forth a little bit, but not likely to get to rookies."