LIONS OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR JOE LOMBARDI QUOTE SHEET
On if there is a certain number of turnovers he wants to have as an offense: "You're always going for zero, so one is always too many. We never put an overall number. If you said, ‘Hey we only want 16' and you were at five in the last game you don't want him to have 11 in the last game. You just try to minimize them as much as possible, at least one thing we have been somewhat successful with this year."
On if there was a discussion with QB Matthew Stafford regarding turnovers this year: "I think it's a process more than just one meeting. I think it's easy to say, ‘Don't turn the ball over.' Like I say, it's a process, the way you practice, the way you install the plays, just your overall philosophy and how you approach each game, each play and each situation. Some situations call for you to be a little bit more careful, some situations you have to be more aggressive. Some of those two-minute drives he's had, some of those throws that he's made, maybe he wouldn't make in the first half, or the third quarter if you're up by seven points or something. It's knowing the situation, knowing what is important and given that point in the game."
On if ball placement is part of interceptions: "I think all that is part of it. The accuracy of the quarterback, the timing of the routes, the receivers being where the quarterbacks think he's going to be and guys catching the ball. Sometimes balls go off guys' hands or the receiver's landmark is a little bit off and the quarterback is throwing to the spot where he thinks he is going to be. I know we had one or two this year where a receiver slipped and the quarterback is trying to throw the ball with some timing and the guy slipped. Sometimes they're attributable to bad luck and sometimes execution, and you're just trying to minimize them any way you can."
On if he has talked with Bears Offensive Coordinator Aaron Kromer: "I talked to him obviously before our game on Thanksgiving, but not since then."
On how difficult it is when there are exterior conflicts going on within an organization: "I think every situation is a little bit different. I know when all of that was happening in New Orleans, certainly when you lost your head coach that was a big deal, but inside the building it was pretty much business as usual other than your head coach being gone. I think every organization, every situation gets handled a little bit differently. I think a lot of Aaron and I know he's probably just coaching hard trying to win this next game."
On what some of the problems were offensively last week: "I thought we came out sluggish. I didn't feel like we were playing fast and playing crisp. We just kept hitting these three and outs and there were different reasons for each drive, whether it was a penalty on the big screen pass that we had, or maybe a missed throw, so every drive we couldn't get into a rhythm because we were never converting any of our third downs. Luckily the defense got a couple turnovers there at the end of the half. We converted one for a touchdown, the other one we didn't. The second half was kind of strange. We came out and just had the drives and got some yards and field goals but couldn't finish those drives for scores either. I felt like we got into a little bit more of a rhythm in the second half, but the start of that game was really poor."
On if it surprises him that RB Joique Bell has never had a 100-yard rushing game: "I think that, again, he's been part of this running back by committee. Sometimes that happens. I would have thought that he might have snuck one in there."
On how much his offense limits a back's ability to rush for 100 yards: "I think that if you're not getting the 24 touches a game it's harder to gain a 100 yards without popping off a 50-yarder or something. It's part of it, but I'm sure when they're 32 they'll be happy that they didn't."
On if Bell has established himself as the head of the running back committee: "Certainly lately, and again I think that every game develops at a different rate, and the game plans kind of come out in a certain way. Lately with Reggie (Bush) coming off the injury I think we just kind of got into the rhythm with him carrying the ball a little bit more, but Reggie is getting back healthy. I can't tell you before the game and exactly how it's going to fall out because you call the plays and certain guys are designated for certain plays and you're not locked into it, it's not set in concrete. He's a guy that's been getting the call more often lately."
On what Bell has done to be more successful over the past month: "I don't know if he's done anything different. I just think things have been working a little bit better. He's just a hard runner, he's a guy that just keeps pounding at that defense and eventually you start popping a few 10, 12-yard runs and leads to more yards."
On how he can prevent the offense from coming out sluggish: "I think you just try to challenge them more than anything. It's hard to force a team to come out with the kind of energy that you want them to, it's just part of the whole week of preparation. We probably maybe didn't do as good of a job as coaches getting them ready. We're really emphasizing that they come out with some energy and be ready to play. There was a little flu bug going around last week, maybe the late start of the game, the guys were off of their routine, I mean it's hard to say. Like I said, you could just feel it early on like, ‘Hey we're not playing as fast as we need to.'"
On how much he looked to Kromer as a resource when he was hired given the similar paths they had: "I don't think he was trying to get me a whole bunch of help. Listen, we're friends and I just talked to him. He kind of told me what their schedule was, they were installing their offense and everything, but not a lot of conversation back and forth."
On if Stafford is going to wear gloves this week: "I don't know. I think he had it on his off hand, I'm not sure of his throwing hand. I guess it would depend on how cold it was."
On how they will be able to manage playing in inclement weather: "It's as much mental as everything. I think if you get fired up you can run through a brick wall, you're not worried about how cold it is. They got those heated benches. This practice was harder than the game because you're out there for two hours straight in the cold. When you're out there in a game you come off and they get on the benches and warm up. The practice I think is a little tougher even than the games."
On if wind is a big issue: "I think yesterday felt a little worst out there because it was a little windier. The wind, just comfort level obviously makes a huge difference. But then in the passing game if it's really blowing hard it can affect the pass."
On what wind speed can affect the passing: "I know it when I see it. When you go out and start warming up and that ball starts flying everywhere, it affects us today. Matt, one of his strengths obviously is his arm strength, so he can cut through the wind pretty well. I think every quarterback probably has a different wind speed that affects them."
On if having trust in the kicker influences the play calling in certain situations: "I suppose in certain situations where you know, ‘Hey, we need this field goal' and maybe you're in that fringe area where you're right at his range and you don't want to take a loss, so maybe you get a little bit more conservative. To be honest, early in the season there weren't many times where I was thinking, ‘Well I know we're going to miss this field goal,' you know what I mean? You still kind of hope that the NFL kicker can make the kick. It certainly gives you confidence as we're sitting on the bench now after we didn't convert and we're kicking a field goal. We're not as nervous about whether that ball is going to go in or not. So, you have a little bit more confidence. He's (K Matt Prater) been doing a great job."
On where the offense is in terms of where they would like it to be: "We'd like to be more consistent. We'd like more games like the Chicago and Tampa game and fewer games like the Minnesota and Arizona games. I think its consistency. I think it'll come with comfort and guys being more comfortable with what they're doing."
On how Head Coach Jim Caldwell envisioned the offense: "I think it's just those fundamentals of discipline, not beating yourself, so it's kind of those overarching philosophy that's been consistent through this whole thing. In order to win you have to first not beat yourself and I think for the most part we've been doing a good job of that."
LIONS DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR TERYL AUSTIN QUOTE SHEET
On being included in more possible head coach interviews: "It's flattering, but that's all it is right now."
On how he will deal with interviews if the team is in the playoffs: "I haven't thought about it yet."
On if he would take head coach interviews if he was asked: "Absolutely, I think you would, but right now that's not what I'm thinking about."
On if it's a lifetime goal to be a head coach: "Well, like I told you guys before, I just kind of try to do the best I can where I'm at, and then whatever happens after that happens. So, it's not something that I've laid out, a plan saying this is what I want to do because I know how hard it would be or how hard it is to have one of these jobs. So, I just try to do the best I can where I am and whatever happens after that, happens."
On if there is any value in doing interviews just for the experience: "When Mike Tomlin got his job, people thought that was just a formality because the job was going to go to Russ (Grimm) or Wiz (Ken Whisenhunt). He went in there and he showed whatever he did that he was qualified for the job. So, I don't think there's any interview that would be just to do it or just for the experience. If I do it, if that opportunity ever came up, I would hope that I would go in there and present myself in the best light, that I might have a real shot at it."
On what his relationship with Tomlin is like: "I like Mike. Mike is a good dude."
On if he has ever talked to Tomlin about coaching advice: "No."
On if has talked to Head Coach Jim Caldwell about head coach interviews: "Not yet, no."
On if he plans to talk to Caldwell if he receives an interview: "I mean, if it comes up, I would, but not yet."
On if it was hard to find tape on Bears QB Jimmy Clausen: "No, because we have a good film staff and so we were able to grab. Obviously, you can go back quite a few years, so we've been able to look at him and look at some of the things that he does. And obviously, you have some preseason tape and some snaps from this year, but we've been able to go back and get quite a bit of tape."
On if he would consider the quarterback switch as a win-win from a newness standpoint to the Bears: "No, I think when we looked at these guys, even the first time we played them, the thing that we knew we had to do is, one, you have to make sure you pay attention and try to stop Matt Forte. He's outstanding, and so that was the first thing we did in terms of game plan. The second thing is, you want to take care of the receivers and the tight end. That hasn't changed because those guys are still there other than obviously, 15 (Brandon Marshall) is out. But we know going into the game, our No. 1 priority is to take care of Matt Forte. So, it wouldn't have mattered who the quarterback was, that'll be our main priority."
On if he expects the Bears to use Forte more this Sunday: "I would think that they would try to use him more than they did the first game. He's one of their top players, if not the top player they have on offense. So, they're going to try to get him as many touches as they can because he's so good with the ball in his hands. We can't limit his touches because they're handing it off to him, but limit the big plays he makes, the gains, because he does it both catching and running. So, he's a dual-threat guy and we've got to do a great job of taking care of him."
On how much scrambling the team did to prepare for Clausen: "I think that what goes on behind the scenes is, you call your film guy and you go back and you find out when he played, what games he played, how many plays, and so you grab all of those plays and you get it and then you go ahead and cut it up by run and pass. Then you go from there."
On if he had to get rid of much of his game plan or add anything: "No, I don't think we will get rid of anything or add anything because again, like I said, our main goal was Forte and stopping the run and working around that, and working our way to the receivers and the tight end. So, whoever the quarterback was really didn't matter because that doesn't take care of those guys and we have to figure out a way to take care of those guys."
On how Clausen is different from QB Jay Cutler as a passer: "I don't think you'll see as many loose plays as you did with Jay because Jay could move around and create some things outside of the pocket. I think what you see with him is, he's a classic pocket guy. He'll create some and he knows if he doesn't have it, he'll just dump it down, take it and move the sticks. So, I think you've got a little bit different mentality that way. But he has plenty of arm strength, you see him make all of the throws. He's accurate and knows where to go with the ball. So, he's a veteran, he hasn't played in a while. So, we just have to make sure we don't make it easy for him."
On if this is the type of situation where the defense needs to rush Clausen early: "We try to rush everybody early."
On the chance that Clausen might get rattled if the defense gets to him early: "I don't know about all of that, if he's going to get rattled. I just know that we're going to try to do what we do every week, which is really put pressure on the passer and in the passing game, and if they try and drop back and pass, we'd like to think that we have the advantage when teams do that. So, we'll just try to get at him and hit him early, hit him often and get him off the spot."
On if the defense will try to not let the Bears feel like they're getting a spark from Clausen: "I think you'd say that, but really the spark is going to come from, I think, from 22 (Forte) the running back, and getting the ball to the playmakers. So like I said, those are the guys that are going to have a spark because they're going to get the ball in their hands and if we tackle well and don't allow big plays, then I think we're going to be okay."
On how surprised he was that the Bears didn't give the ball to Forte more last time: "I was absolutely surprised."
On how much of a point of pride it is when teams forgo the run: "Well, I don't know how much pride it would be. I guess they just figure that it would be tough sledding that way. They may have an easier time spreading us out and throwing the quick gain and making some gains that way, taking the place of the run. It's a lot easier maybe throwing a little five-yard hitch, if they catch it instead of trying to run five yards on our guys. So, maybe that's the mindset. I don't know, I just know we line up every week and we game planned it. We want to make sure we stop the run and don't allow people to run it. So, if they don't do that, then we're okay with that."
On what Bears G Kyle Long does that allows him to be effective against DT Ndamukong Suh: "Well, he is a big, physical lineman. He moves well, he does some things that you can't coach. He's a heck of a competitor and really tough. So, that's a great matchup, those two guys. If you want to watch a real battle this week, watch those two guys because they'll go at it and they'll compete hard and they'll compete fair, and it'll be a heck of a deal. But I think it's just, he's athletic, he bends, he's strong, he competes like heck and that's why they have a good matchup. I bet you they're probably very similar temperament-wise."
On if the Lions did anything schematically that would deter the run in the last matchup against Chicago: "I don't think we did anything schematically that would do anything to them that would make them say, ‘Hey, we need to throw the ball.' That was probably their choice."
On how different the Bears are without WR Brandon Marshall: "Well, they're going to be quite different because you don't have guys on both sides of the field that you have to say, ‘Woah.' They have other good players, but they don't have a guy like him. So, they're going to be different, but I think what that does is, now you see the spike in catches for the tight end and (Alshon) Jeffery and for the back. Really, the two leading receivers are the back and the tight end, so we expect them to get the ball probably a little bit more than normal because Marshall is not available."
On if he anticipates having DT C.J. Mosley on Sunday: "C.J.? Yeah, he's good. I'm happy for C.J. and we anticipate having him."
On if he had a boy or a girl: "Girl."
On if she's healthy: "Healthy and C.J. is happy, and we couldn't be happier for him.