After a disastrous Week 6 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals, Detroit Lions coach Dan Campbell didn’t mince words when it came to assessing his team’s offensive play, specifically calling on quarterback Jared Goff to improve his play:
“I’ll tell you this... (full 10-second pause), I feel like he needs to step up more than he has.”
Campbell chose his words carefully and rightfully called out Goff for his uninspiring performance, but he was also quick to point out that the quarterback was not alone in taking the blame for the team’s lack of effort.
“He’s going to need to put a little bit of weight on his shoulders here,” Campbell said. “It’s time to step up, make some throws, and do some things. But he needs help. He needs help.”
Campbell used the phrase “collective effort” in describing his offense’s poor performance. He placed blame on himself, his coordinators, coaches, and players as a whole.
“I don’t put this all on Jared Goff,” Campbell said. “This is a collective offensive (effort). From how can w help schematically, to — are we in man at the proper time? Are our guys getting open? Is he making the throw he should? Is he making the right read? So this is a collective effort offensively that we are digging ourselves into a ditch with.”
Campbell would go on to say he would be “looking at everything” to see if any changes needed to be made on offense, but when asked specifically about Goff, Campbell said he has no plans to bench the quarterback at this time.
“No. But that doesn't mean something won’t ever come up,” Campbell said. “I’m going to look at everything.”
When Goff’s statistical output was brought into question, Campbell quickly interjected and defended Goff.
“Yeah and there’s some guys MA’ing (Missed Assignments) too. He’s trying to make a throw, with guys that are MA’ing, so he can't even trust where guys are supposed to be at.”
Campbell took a breath. Apologized for cutting the reporter’s question off, and refocused his thoughts.
“So yeah, he (Goff) needs to make some throws, and our receivers need to be where they’re supposed to be.’
Once again, Campbell stressed, there is blame that can be assigned throughout the offense, and circled back to Goff.
“He knows this,” Campbell continued, “but we’re getting these holding calls, well it’s because he’s drifting back in the pocket 10-yards deep. That’s not fair for those guys (the offensive line) either. If you hold on to the ball — so, like I told you, this is a collective effort. Everything goes hand-in-hand.
“But I want to see him step up. I do. Because I think he can do it.”