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Jim Caldwell comments on Lions' win over Jets

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Quotes from Jim Caldwell's media session after Thursday's Detroit Lions preseason game.

Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Below is a look at what Detroit Lions head coach Jim Caldwell had to say after Thursday's win over the New York Jets. (Quotes provided by the Lions.)

Opening statement: "It's always good to kind of get the first one under your belt and I thought our guys did a number of things that were certainly encouraging. From a defensive standpoint, did a nice job in terms of keeping them out of the end zone. Anytime you have a preseason game it's very difficult to hold a team to no touchdowns and they were able to do so. Did a nice job with a little bit of bend and don't break sort of, couple series in there, but overall thought they tackled well and did a pretty good job. But yet obviously we still got a lot of work to do. Offensively, I thought we ran the ball decently. The offensive line did a nice job in there as well as the backs carrying the ball. Three quarterbacks all had scoring drives at one point or another, which I think was good, but we still got a lot of work to do. But things were at least encouraging. I'll open up for any questions." 

On RB Ameer Abdullah's performance: "We've seen his quickness and obviously when we were looking at him, evaluating him coming out of college you see he could run, tough competitor all those things and it's good to see him out there against another team and he was able to find some cracks and got off to a pretty good start."

On what he was looking for out of the starting unit: "Really the thing that you're looking for, it's not often times that you just take the ball and move it down the field and score. Sometimes, you end up with a field goal. If you score it's great, but we're looking really for tempo, execution, precision, being sharp and not many penalties and things of that nature. I think overall the entire team only had three penalties, which was obviously the way we'd like to play. So, I think the offensive unit, the first group was pretty sharp."

On his evaluation of the two backup quarterbacks: "Both performed I think pretty well. Like I said, you've got to look at the film to see all the nuances of it, but both guys got in there and did well. I think the only little hiccup is Kellen (Moore) had down in the end zone with the interception, but other than that I thought he moved the ball well with the team and did some nice things and had fun. Dan (Orlovsky) did as well."

On Abdullah's athleticism: "The Lord's blessed him with some pretty unique talents. He's the guy that's very, very quick and he has vision. He has both of those things. Obviously, quickness without vision is a bit of a waste, but he's got both of those and you didn't see him catch the ball at all, but he can catch the ball as well. Yeah, a pretty productive night."

On improvements in the running game: "I think if you look at them, you just have to take them and look at the games as we go. In this particular game, it looked like we functioned fairly well in that area, but you can't make any or draw any conclusions from it. We have a long way to go yet."

On the offensive line's role in running game thus far: "Typically, it doesn't go anywhere unless your line's blocking. No matter who you have back there at the running back position they have to be able to create some holes for them and those guys I thought did a good job of that. The backs were able to find them."

On if Abdullah can create opportunities once he finds a hole: "I'd say that's affirmative. He's got some talent and he can make you miss and he can run around you and we'll see whether or not how much he does with power, but that's probably not his forte necessarily of just running over people. The Lord's blessed him with some other gifts that he can use, but he's a good player."

On his impressions of G Laken Tomlinson: "Tough to tell until I look at the film, I'm not sure. I saw him do a couple things pretty nice, but down in the trenches it's tough to gauge from where we are."

On Abdullah finishing his runs: "He's fun to watch. You can see he can bang it up in there and he's got vision and he's deceptive. You can see him accelerate through the holes with a good forward lean, has some pop behind him. He's fun to watch."

On WR TJ Jones and the return game: "My initial thoughts would be that we're blocking better up front. Giving guys a chance to get started and once TJ got started obviously, he was able to make some things go. He has speed. He's slippery enough to get through some small cracks that they have there and I think he did a very nice job. Obviously, (Jeremy) Ross had a pretty good return on the first kickoff return. I think overall, it's an area in which we have to improve on and I think we're getting a little bit better."

On G/C Darren Keyton's injury: "Yeah, it doesn't look good for him. Obviously, I think it's a pretty significant injury. He'll be out for a while."

On WR Calvin Johnson and CB Rashean Mathis not playing: "Coaches' decision."

On if injuries were an issue with Johnson and Mathis: "No."

On WR Greg Salas' performance being the most impactful since the start of camp: "No, he has had some pretty good days in camp. He's caught the ball well. He and (Dan) Orlovsky kind of hooked up on the same exact pass for a touchdown the other day, it was just on the other side of the field. He's caught the ball well and I think most of our coaches will agree with the fact that he's shown some real positive traits throughout camp and tonight was no different."

On the defensive tackles' performance: "I think there were some good things and I think we still got a lot of things to work on and that's another area that's very, very difficult to say exactly what was going on until you get a chance to look at that film . There were some guys that made some plays. Caraun (Reid) was obviously the sack and Devin (Taylor) made some plays here and there and Jermelle (Cudjo) made a nice play on a third down to stop things like that. Pretty good effort out of those guys."