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Lions players comment on win over Packers

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A recap of what various Detroit Lions players had to say after Sunday's game against the Green Bay Packers.

Gregory Shamus

Below is a look at what various Detroit Lions players had to say after Sunday's win over the Green Bay Packers. (Quotes provided by the Lions.)

LIONS QB MATTHEW STAFFORD
On the fourth quarter drive with less than seven minutes to go being an example of finishing the game: "I think so. I think the whole second half. Our defense did an outstanding job of getting off the field all day. Against that group that they were going up against that, was pretty awesome. In the second half we did a pretty good job on the offense staying on the field. Didn't punt the ball, had the one long drive and (Julius) Peppers made a great play and sacked fumble. We wish we could have come away with points there. The second drive we had a long drive, third-down conversation for a touchdown. Getting the ball with six and some change left and being able to run it out and end it with a knee is awesome. That's what you have to do sometimes. It's not always going to be pretty, we know that. We lost guys on defense guys having to step up all over the place, offense, defense and we did that and were able to win."

On pressure being taken off because of the defense's great play: "I think every game is different and there are going to be times where our defense is going to have issues and we're going to be able to score a bunch a points and win a game. Then there's going to be times like today where the offense was laboring to put points up and our defense is going to do a great job like they did today getting off the field and holding them to seven. That's pretty awesome, so it's complementary football. It's what you have to have, it's part of being a team and we had that today it was awesome."

On interceptions on attempts to WR Calvin Johnson and WR Corey Fuller: "I can throw that ball a little bit better and, you know, maybe just a little less on it. The one to Calvin (Johnson) it's third and long, we're taking a shot trying to get him one on one. Worst case scenario is what happened, a pick and a minus one goes on my stats, whatever. I don't really mind that our defense ended up getting a safety out of it. Obviously, you don't want to turn the ball over. We did that too many times tonight. We were able to make some plays off of them and that's big."

On what the deep ball to Fuller adds to offense: "A guy that can really run. I mean, he's running against Sam Shields out there and Shields is as fast as they come in this league, and Corey (Fuller) can really go. To see him have a misstep earlier with he and I my ball thrown a little bit high and he not squeezing as great as he can, to come back and make a play in the same half, you know, a big clutch play on a ball way down the field, it was great to see. He's a young player, he doesn't have a ton of experience, so to see him step up and shrug off the first one and just playing football, that's awesome."

On RB Reggie Bush's performance: "He did a great job today. He was great in the passing game, really good in the running game and was ball-secure. It was awesome. He's a guy that creates matchup issues and when we get him in space he's electric and he showed that tonight. I'm just happy for him. He didn't get as many touches as he's probably accustomed to in the first two games. He came out tonight with some fire and made every one of those touches count."

LIONS RB REGGIE BUSH
On getting more involved on offense: "Well, I think after the last two games, we talked about wanting our run game to be more efficient and making sure that we took the necessary steps and made the necessary corrections to make sure our run game was effective today. Green Bay did a good job in the first half of kind of slowing us down, but I think we kind of wore them down a little bit throughout the course of the game. We were able to put together a really good drive to end the game.

On the substantial difference in time of possession today: "I think that goes along with the run game. Making sure the run game was effective and when you run the ball well, you chew up the time on the clock. I don't think it was so much the time of possession, but it was more so making sure our run game was efficient. They kind of slowed us down in the first half. The second half we kind of picked it up."

On getting a 10-plus-yard run for the first time in four games: "It felt good. It felt really good. It was a needed touchdown at a crucial point in the game. On offense, we've been struggling a little bit throughout the course of the game. We've got some corrections that we need to make to get ready for the New York Jets next week, but all in all, it felt really good to have that touchdown."

LIONS WR CALVIN JOHNSON
On WR Corey Fuller's deep catch before the end of the first half: "Big time. That was big. He's been making catches like those in practice. It's great that something like that is translating to the field on Sunday."

On how much of the game plan was to get RB Reggie Bush involved early: "We definitely wanted to run the ball today. The line was big for us in the trenches down there and on both sides of the ball, we did great. So, that was good to see. Reggie, Joique (Bell), Theo (Riddick), all of them ran the ball well, especially there at the end of the game. We had those long drives to ice it."

On how much establishing the run helps open up the passing offense: "Tremendously. It makes them bring down the extra defender in the box and then it's fair game on the outside. Somebody has one-on-one."

On how the defense is playing right now: "I'm always sitting out there on a knee on the sideline when they're out on the field because it's fun to watch those guys. We take a lot of pride on offense and spending a lot of time on the field, or at least trying to. We want to get those guys a good rest so they go back out there at full speed and dominate. We've got some beasts on the defensive line and our secondary is playing well too."

LIONS C DOMINIC RAIOLA
On the defense's play: "We knew what kind of a game it was going to be from the get-go. I'm proud of our d-line. It's no surprise to me. When they don't get to the quarterback, ruin a quarterback's day, that's a surprise to me. But when they do stuff like that, it's no surprise. They're bad men out there. I give them a lot of credit for this game."

On getting a win over Packers QB Aaron Rodgers: "Yeah, he just looked flustered back there. He's still one of the best, but it was just one of those days for him."

On the last drive of the game: "That's a big thing we're preaching this year, finishing. Finishing games, finishing with the ball in our hands and we were able to do that. We did it the first week, we did it this week, so it's a big deal to us to finish with the ball in our hands."

On RB Reggie Bush's performance: "We knew he had it in him. The more opportunities he got, the more he took advantage of it. He just got more opportunities this week and we know how explosive Reggie Bush is."

LIONS DT NDAMUKONG SUH
On the defense playing well from the start of the game: "I think it's a big opportunity for us to feed off of something. At the end of the day when we have opportunities like that we're going to take them and run with them, execute and go from there. Things we've talked about in games obviously, and obviously in practice we work on things of that nature when we come up to a situation. We just executed and Don Carey did a great job."  

On beating the Packers for the first time in a game where QB Aaron Rodgers finished: "I think it's just another game, obviously against a great team. It's simple as that to me."

On anything the defense saw on tape to help against the run: "Honestly in my opinion, run game comes down to the front four guys. No matter how great your linebackers are, granted we have some great linebackers in (DeAndre) Levy and Tully (Stephen Tulloch), but your front four has to dominate the line of scrimmage. That's something that we pride ourselves on, we're always going to pride ourselves on that. We talk about it all the time. We want to stop the run with the front four. That's period, point blank and then we'll go from there. Obviously, our linebackers coming down, they're down there to come make plays when we're double teamed, triple teamed, whatever it may be."

On pressure to perform when the secondary is banged up: "I wouldn't call them patchwork. Everybody in the league is a great player to be in this league, so you have to give them respect. At the end of the day guys have stepped up in the position that they had to do that in. We've had tough injuries but we understand that's part of the game and we'll continue to do that when things come our way. At the end of the day we're going to continue to play hard. "

LIONS CB DARIUS SLAY
On how impressive it was to have LB DeAndre Levy line up in the slot and cover Packers WR Jordy Nelson: "It's great because he's very athletic. A guy like Levy is just athletic. He's a really talented guy. We already knew we would have to help him, but he's proven his ability that he can do anything he wants to. He's a great player, man."

On the defense and keeping Packers QB Aaron Rodgers and Nelson in check the entire game: "That was just our game plan, take away their best players. We already knew they had a great quarterback, but our thing was to stop Jordy. We did that and made the other people beat us."

On how much easier the front seven made it on the rest of the defense: "Real easy, real easy. With that pass rush, we've got talented guys up there. We got a lot of pressure and it made it easy for us."

LIONS LB DEANDRE LEVY
On the defense's performance today: "I just tried to give that extra effort. We kind of had a setback last week on defense, I think. Everybody on defense responded well to the challenge that the coaches put in front of us. To go against a team like that, to come out and hold them to seven points, be down two turnovers, it's just a testament to everybody's poise and composure during these tough stretches."

On what the key was defensively today: "It was a great team effort. It started up front, getting pressure on them. We didn't have to blitz too often. Guys in the back end covered front to back, it was a great team effort."

On how much his job increased when LB Stephen Tulloch left the game: "A little bit, yeah. I was in control of the huddle, I had to make some of the play calls. The first couple of series were a little rough, just trying to get familiar. Hearing is so loud in there and the headset wasn't working the best, but I wanted to just keep us level. During those tough stretches, whatever happens on offense doesn't affect us. We have to do our jobs, so that's one thing I wanted to bring. Just a little poise and to keep us level, whether we were playing good or bad, we have to be level."

On how much the ‘next man up' mentality helped the team: "It helped us a great amount. You can't come in feeling sorry for yourself. This was a big game, it was an NFC North game and it's a home game. It's a team that's always in the mix of things at the end of the season, so it's good to get a win over them when we did."