Lions’ win pumps up Dan Campbell; says team headed in right direction

Lions coach Dan Campbell

ALLEN PARK — Halfway through the season it’s tough to make  too much of the second win. That’s where Lions coach Dan Campbell found himself on Monday following the 15-9 win over the Green Bay Packers on Sunday.

“It gives you a little more, you  just feel like you rebound just a little quicker, that’s probably the best way to say it,’’ Campbell said. “It’s like you get the wind under your wings a little faster. That’s all. Everybody puts a lot of work into it obviously. It’s hard to win in this league but that’s the name of the game. That’s what it’s all about, it’s fun.’’

The win came on the heels of a week when one assistant coach was fired and the top tight end was traded. Instead of splitting the team, they marched forward. The defense played its best game of the season.

“I don’t know validation, I just know I do feel like we’re going in the right direction, I know the wins are not there though we just got one there. I like the improvement,’’ Campbell said. “I would like to be in a better place than we are, certainly I feel like we should have two more wins here, that’s on me. But certainly to get a win for win’s sake goes a long way.’’

Immediately after the game Campbell admitted he was exhausted and just wanted to go home, put his feet up and drink a beer.  Then he said he saw that Bears quarterback Justin Fields ran for 178 yards in a loss to the Dolphins. The Lions play at the Bears on Sunday.

“I already had my feet up on the couch, thought I was going to relax and I saw that,’’ Campbell said, noting that yes he did get his beer.

“(The Bears) are doing a really good job with him, I haven’t got through all of (the film) yet. They’ve built it around his strengths and what he’s able to do. We all know he’s a hell of an athlete and he can hurt you with his legs and his arms,” Campbell said. “It will be a big test.’’

Campbell was reminded — not that he didn’t know — that the Lions have had trouble this season with mobile quarterbacks. 

Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts ran 17 times for 90 yards and a touchdown in the Lions’ season-opening loss to Philadelphia, while Seattle’s Geno Smith carried 7 times for 49 yards and a touchdown to top the Lions. 

It will be a point of emphasis even though Campbell joked they might not emphasize it since it didn’t work previously.

“We have a chance this week to win on the road for the first time since I’ve been here, win back-to-back games, win another division game,’’ Campbell said. “For us we’ve got a lot to play for, obviously.’’

NOTES: Malcolm Rodriguez was having his elbow examined on Monday. … Campbell said Kerby Joseph remains in concussion protocol but he is hopeful he will be ready to play on Sunday. 

(Next up: Lions (2-6) at Chicago Bears (3-6), 1 p.m. on Sunday.)


Author: Paula Pasche

Paula Pasche, a veteran sports writer, covers the Detroit Lions for her Lions Lowdown blog. She has written two books, "Game of My Life Detroit Lions" and "100 Things Lions Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die" which are available at bookstores and on She won first place for column writing from the Society of Professional Journalists in Detroit (Class B) in 2011, 2012 and 2013 and was The Oakland Press 2010 Staffer of the Year.

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