New Detroit Lions defensive coordinator Cory Undlin had his first spot with the media on Tuesday, as the entire Lions coaching staff is down in Mobile, Alabama working with the North team at the 2020 Senior Bowl.
One of the biggest questions with Undlin is how much of his own philosophy and scheme he will be bringing to the table with head coach Matt Patricia pulling most of the strings of the defense over his first two years in Detroit. That starts with play calling, but as of right now, it appears both Patricia and Undlin have not discussed those responsibilities.
“We’ll talk about that and we’ll figure it out,” Undlin said Tuesday according to MLive’s Kyle Meinke. “Whatever it is, I’m here right now, and what that ends up being is what it ends up being. Whether I’m calling them all the time, whether (Matt Patricia) calls them, I have no idea.”
As for philosophy, Undlin made sure to point out he’s versatile in scheme. He’s helped run 3-4 defenses in New England, Cleveland and Jacksonville, but also run some 4-3 with the Broncos and most recently with the Eagles. Overall, he simply wants to do what’s best with the players he’s got.
“My overall philosophy would be whatever the players—and whoever is on the roster, what’s the makeup of the defensive side of the ball—let’s do what best fits them,” Undlin said. “How are they going to be successful? Let’s do that.”
As for his talent evaluation for the Lions roster right now, Undlin said it was too early for that, as he’ll get to know the current roster more and more as he gets more comfortable in Detroit.
“I’ve got a lot of work to do, as far as getting a great, great feel on everybody,” Undlin said. “I know it’s good enough, so you guys know what happens next. The evaluation process starts when we get back, and then we’ll deal with that as we go forward through the spring, but I can’t wait to get my hands on them and start working with them.”