Below is a look at what Detroit Lions head coach Jim Caldwell had to say on Monday. (Quotes provided by the Lions.)
Opening Statement: "Good morning practice for us, a little change of pace, this week at least. We have the morning practice, obviously today and also on Wednesday. This is a chance to just adjust the time somewhat, make them get up a little bit different time, make them adjust to temperatures, field, a little dew on it and things of that nature, so I thought they performed pretty well this morning. We were working a lot of situations, third down-and-one and red zone were the areas in which we really concentrated on and I think we were ok in both, not great. Defense played well, practiced well I should say. We were just up and down a little bit offensively, so we have a lot of work to do yet."
On DT Caraun Reid: "He's made real good progress. You know, you can tell, not only has he changed physically, just in terms of his overall body comp, but his strength, his explosiveness has also improved. He's playing well. That's kind of what you see typically from a guy who's going into his second year that's worked extremely hard in between to try to get to the point where he measures up to what this league requires, so he made a pretty sizable leap physically and also you can see it in his play now. We'll get an opportunity to see a little bit more here come preseason, but he's improved."
On how Reid is moving differently: "Sure. He's more explosive, he's running better, not to say that he couldn't run before. He's a very good athlete, but he's improved in all those areas. Almost in every single area, he's improved which is good."
On how the competition between Reid and DT Tyrunn Walker is playing out: "It's healthy. You know, (Tyrunn) Walker is a real fine athlete, big guy who can run, has experience and very versatile, so that's a real good battle in there between those two guys."
On if he is more comfortable with the DT position now than before the pads came on: "Well, you know, the jury is still out. We still have a lot of work between now and the time when the season starts, so preseason gives us a chance to really see what each guy is capable of doing. So these are important games for us particularly with positions like that, so we get a chance to see these guys in action against people that they haven't been practicing against all during the preseason, so it'll be good."
On how important the next step is for the offensive line: "It's extremely important because they're going to have to adjust rather quickly on the fly, so their communication has to be crisp and sharp, has to be clear. They're going to face some things that they probably haven't worked against because other schemes are a little bit different, so it'll be a real good challenge for them. It'll be great to see them out there."
On why there was so much scout team work today: "Really no different than any other day. You know, in terms of giving them a different look and those kinds of things, we do that every day. We have a team review period pretty much every day, we try to introduce what we're going to work on a little bit later, so we do it at a slower pace and then we do it against the defense or against the offense, kind of depending."
On if the scout team was 'Jets-focused': "No."
On FB Michael Burton: "He switches in and out. He and Emil (Igwenagu) are doing a nice job of working and competing. He's a guy that doesn't make very many mistakes. He knows his assignments, but it's just a matter of getting in there and getting him enough experience against the kind of caliber of player he's going to face week in and week out, but he's making strides and he's also working hard on special teams as well. It's kind of important for those guys to be able to hold down a little bit more than one role just simply as a fullback. He's also got to be periodically, pretty versatile for us in the kicking game."
On the battles between T Riley Reiff and DE Ezekiel Ansah in practice: "I look at every film, every play, every day, so I don't miss anything. I might be at that end of the field, but I get a chance to see it inside and it's been healthy, it's been good. Those two guys, those are the kind of battles that you look for. Two very good players trying to make each other better. Ziggy (Ansah) can give you a few problems, you know, he can turn speed to power very quickly. A big guy who runs that fast is quite a challenge. But Riley (Reiff) knows his position, he's played against a lot of different styles and techniques, so it's good work for both."
On Reiff's improvements from last year to this year: "I think they all make many, you know, and sometimes there's just small things that make a huge difference. And with him, I just think for every one of these guys within the system, they have a year under their belt. I mean, every coach, we go through an evaluation, we talk about each position, talk about each player, and probably to a man they all say at some point in time, ‘It's his second year in the system, and he's functioning better, he doesn't have to think nearly as much.' And I think all of them are going through that."
On TE Joseph Fauria's value on offense: "You know, because of the fact that he has length and certainly does a great job down in the red zone. But I know he doesn't want to be labeled as a one-dimensional guy either. But we need another guy to come along and to be a solid guy in that mix with (Brandon) Pettigrew, (Eric) Ebron, and whomever that is. Joe is certainly capable of being that guy, and it's just a matter of trying to get through the injury bug that he's been facing for the past year and a half or so."
On why WR Ryan Broyles didn't practice today: "Injury. But hopefully he'll be back in a couple days."
On if he anticipates Broyles' injury being long-term: "I don't anticipate it being long-term, but doctors will make that determination."
On if he will experiment in the preseason with the NFL's new two-point rule: "Perhaps. You know, we're going to look at a number of different things, and try to make a determination on how we're going to manage that situation. We're going to have to be ready to go for two because whether you take the conservative approach because we're indoors, we may not have the variance of wind at home as much, so you can kick your PAT and not feel too bad about that aspect of it. But the fact of the matter is, when you go on the road, the wind and all those conditions may make you think about going for two more often. But even more so I'm sure there's going to be some teams we play against, and we may be one of them, that decide to go for two every single time. So with the point differential, you're going to have to be good at that particular execution of the two-point play. So we're going to work on it, and keep working on it, and we'll do a little scheming too."
On if his two-point chart has changed with the new rule: "Well, what doesn't change is the point differential, and that's kind of how you always made your decisions anyway. But all it'll do is ramp it up a little bit. So you have to make a determination on how quickly you want to go for two. Typically, it's always been towards the end of the game, into the third quarter and things of that nature. You might look at it a little bit differently now. And particularly once you get a feel for if a team is going to do it every single time, that they have an opportunity to score. The big thing is keeping them out of the end zone and you don't have to worry about it."
On G Manny Ramirez and G Laken Tomlinson's battle for the left guard position: "Both guys are tough, strong guys. Obviously, the obvious thing is that Manny's been around. Manny knows the position inside and out and is doing a great job. Laken has all kinds of ability, he's just got to kind of put it all together, but I think it's good. I think he's learning from Manny as well as competing with him, so it's a unique combination."
On DT Haloti Ngata's progress: "Yeah, very good progress. He's coming along. He's on schedule as the doctors have him, in terms of his pace of what he's supposed to be doing, etc. They have him doing a few more things inside. It's not necessary because he's not doing it out here doesn't mean he's not doing anything. He's moving and running and he'll be back soon."
On if Ngata will be back by the regular season opener: "I think he'll be back soon and that means sooner than the opener."
On LB Kyle Van Noy's pass breakups in practice: "I think that's one of the areas where it's his strong suit. He really can move in space, has a very good feel for reading routes and being able to get his hands on balls on the break. He's working at it and improving, but there's a lot of other things he's just got to keep growing and developing in and I think he's doing that."
On TE Eric Ebron's response to criticism last season and his approach to helping players manage criticism: "We don't necessarily pick out one particular guy in terms of handling all different types of issues. We have to take the holistic approach when we're coaching, so you've got to cover everything. I think they're all making progress, nobody's arrived yet, but I think they listen and they try to improve upon the things in which we feel they haven't done very well."
On if Ebron has built a rapport with QB Mathew Stafford: "Yeah, someone mentioned that the other day. I think they were probably counting the number of passes that were thrown in his direction and that kind of thing. But, I think overall I just think systemically they're all getting a better feel for what we expect from them. The reads and progressions kind of lend itself to getting the ball maybe to them a few more times. But, then also I think it's one of those things that against teams that we face we're going to have to look and try to make a determination on whether or not you're going to take Golden (Tate) away and take Calvin (Johnson) away and so that leaves your inside players open a little bit more. So (Theo) Riddick and guys that can catch the ball inside, all of our backs as well as our tight ends are going to have some I think pretty good opportunities."