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Jim Caldwell's quotes from Saturday

A recap of Jim Caldwell's comments from Saturday.

Ezra Shaw

Below is a look at what Detroit Lions head coach Jim Caldwell had to say on Saturday. (Quotes provided by the Lions.)

On if he has chosen his Captains for Monday night: "Yes, (Matthew) Stafford on offense, (Stephen) Tulloch on defense and Montell Owens on the special teams."

On if those captains are just for Monday's game: "Yes, we are doing game captains."

On if he will be the person choosing captains every week: "With some input, yes sir."

On why he decided to choose game captains rather than season captains: "I think I mentioned it yesterday. We have so many strong leaders, I believe, that to narrow it down to a couple guys would be first of all, depriving the rest of the team of their leadership. You look at every one of our rooms, we have veterans all over the place. Not only that, but they are quality, quality men that are fine players and have a positive impact on this team. You're going to see quite a few of those guys at some time rolling into that position."

On what the typical Friday practice looks like: "We typically will go out on the field and work through our special teams first. It will probably be about a 20-minute period. From that, we go to offensive and defensive breakdowns, look at unique plays and situations that you try to cover. Then, we go to our team functions, team seven on seven, special categories such as third-and-one, red zone and things of that nature, so on and so forth. Seven on seven covers mostly out in the field and in some red zone and then teamwork; have a few plays to try to get the rhythm of a game, move as quickly as we possibly can with an up-tempo sort of a style. Depending on the day, some weeks we will do two minutes, other days we don't depending on if we do it on Thursday. We did it on our Thursday practice this time around, so we will not do it today. A couple mock situations and that will be the end of practice."

On if there is a balance point for the team's emotional level during the week and leading up to the game: "I do think there is a process to getting ready for a ball game and Friday is one that you certainly do not want to be at an emotional fever pitch for the ball game. I do think that our guys have a good sense of that. I think our training is such where there is a buildup and crescendo, and you hope that that happens right there at the time where you kick the ball off on game day. I do think, nevertheless, there is a heightened sense of awareness and focus, it's a fun time."

On his concerns about the team: "You know, I tell you what, I believe in every single one of the guys that'll be out there on the field for us. I believe every single one of these guys is going to help us win. I don't have concerns. There are things that you may not know right now because we haven't seen them in all situations and so there's some things we'll learn along the way, but I know there's things with these guys we'll adjust. We have a lot of veterans and we'll make the necessary corrections. The important part is to make those corrections quickly enough to adapt to get you a victory, that's the key. I think our guys will be capable of doing that." 

On his biggest question about team that he wants to see answered: "I don't have any. I don't have any biggest questions. We've gotten to have a good sense of who this team is, what we can do is just apply it and we'll see what happens. You get a real good sense of your team in terms of strengths and weaknesses during this time and usually by the fourth game you have a real good sense. You don't know up until then. About the fourth game you have a pretty good sense of who you are and you think you know, but typically when you get an opportunity to kind of face other teams that have the same kind of talent that you do, things will start to show up."

On measuring the team throughout the season: "We try to do the same thing, we try to look at quarters as just kind of break it up. We like to play the games and add them up at the end, you know, that's the key. It's a marathon, it's not a sprint and every week's a new challenge and you're growing and developing every week. I think you're going to see that from this team. This team is full of potential."

On if he knows what to expect from a Tom Coughlin-coached team: "I think I know. After having the opportunity to watch his teams, even in college, he was at Boston College when I was at Penn State, it goes way back. One thing you know, they're a well-coached team, they're fundamentally sound, they'll be tremendous is every single aspect. They're not going to make very many mistakes and the team knows how to win. He knows how to put them in place to win as well. Pat Flaherty is a guy, their offensive line coach, (who) worked on the staff with us at Wake Forest when I first went there. We have a pretty good feel for what to expect and what to anticipate from this team and they're all things that can give you some problems. So, you be better ready."

On what makes a good special teams player: "It depends on what they're doing. Obviously, the specialists have to be experts at what they're doing in terms of punting the ball and kicking the ball. Accuracy is involved, snapping the ball and making certain that they're within the allotted amount of time. That will keep you from getting kicks blocked and things of that nature. There's some expertise within that. From a coverage standpoint, you're looking for guys with tenacity, with speed, with a hunger and a thirst to get to the ball on every single opportunity. You're looking for guys that have some ingenuity because of the fact that often times, in particular special teams, you're assigned to a lane, but there comes a time where you have to be a football player. So, those are the kinds of things you try to look for. Certain guys fit certain locations on the field, depending upon what you're requiring them to do. There are certain body types, so that all varies a bit."

On what makes FB Montell Owens a good special teams player: "He's tough, hard-nosed, has speed and experience now because he's been around a bit. In his early years, he was at Jacksonville and I remember every single week, while I was a head coach and even prior to that, we were always talking about, ‘Hey you better block number 24," who was Montell at that time down there, and number 81, who was (Kassim) Osgood. Those two guys were like wrecking crews. They did an unbelievable job of making plays all over the field. So, your first order of business was to make certain that you slow those two ball-hawks down. That's the thing that you find in him. He hasn't lost that desire and thirst to get to the ball. He is also very well-equipped. He's got a natural low center of gravity. He's got natural leverage and not only that, he's a great leader as well."

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