Lions vs. Packers Postgame Quotes from Several Lions and Packers Coaches and Players
LIONS HEAD COACH ROD MARINELLI
Opening statement: "Had two injuries: Gerald Alexander with a concussion and Casey FitzSimmons with a thumb."
On if his steadfast belief in the team has changed after this game: "No. Because I just believe in them. I work with them every day and we just have to keep going, keep driving them and keep pushing."
On what happened after they fought back and gained the lead: "Well, you know, we did. We fought back to get in it and that's good. But the bottom line in this league is winning. And the thing I talk about all the time is you can't turn the ball over. We have opportunities, and you have to get more takeaways and not turn it over. That probably came down to the final straw there. And we gave up a big play in the end there in a pass. We had them down in third down and a great field position - can't do it. Playing man coverage, you can't do it."
On if this loss hurts more considering the team had gained the lead: "No, not really. For me it isn't. It's just it's a loss. You can't take anything any worse. My job is to look forward and look forward for this team, and I'm going to do that."
On if he was concerned by QB Jon Kitna's interceptions: "Oh yeah, always. Turnovers are always a concern for me, no question. That's something we preach every day, and we just have to get it done and we didn't."
On if the turning point was the first interception: "That and then we had the one pass that popped on us out there when we had them backed up. That was big. I think we had a 1-point lead at that point, and we had a chance. That's when your defense has got to step up and snuff them out."
On how he would characterize the team: "A team that's going to go back to work and give me a great effort next week and prepare."
On if it was disappointing to see a veteran QB make such huge turnovers: "There's no doubt - at any position. It's ball security, that is No. 1. You have to secure the ball, and we didn't. And that's part of winning and losing in this league. That's how you lose; it's ball security."
On what adjustments were made after the second straight fumble: "I think it wasn't so much an adjustment, we were pressured a little bit more. One time we had a guy fall down, it went over his head. And we got beat in man coverage. And those are just base things that we have to be able to perform. I mean, you have to stay on your feet, and then you have to play man coverage if you call it. And I thought the contain was poor today. As hard as we worked at containing this guy, he got outside and most of the time he got outside he had some big plays on us, so just a breakdown in discipline on that."
On if he adjusted the passing game to make it more successful: "I just thought we were complete. We were just making the plays on it. Not too much, but we got some nice shots into Calvin (Johnson). He came up and made some good plays."
On why he made a move at RT by putting in Gosder Cherilus: "I thought we'd give Gos an opportunity. I thought we were struggling blocking that left end."
On if he will start Cherilus next week: "I guess we'll watch the tape right now. I like to always watch the tape before I say anything like that."
On why LB Jordon Dizon did not play more: "We just didn't get him in; it just didn't happen. Yeah, we wanted to (play him more), but I think the amount of personnel groups - you see how much they run in there - and it puts a tremendous stress on the signal caller, a lot. And so we just tried to be smart with that."
On CB Brian Kelly: "Well one: like I said, we rotate quite a bit, and those three corners play the whole game. And I just wanted to give him a chance to get his feet back under him."
On why he put CB Keith Smith in instead: "Some of the times it was, they (Green Bay) were going four wideouts, too. You know, we were bringing five and six DBs on the game, too."
On if Smith looked confused after a particular catch by Green Bay WR Greg Jennings: "I'll answer that for you tomorrow better. I don't want to answer something I don't quite know."
On if there's a timetable for when he needs to win as a coach: "No, the timetable's for next week. That's my timetable."
On what he will do for next week: "We just go back and work. That's what I do. I'm not going to give you a magic wand. You want a magic wand, you go home and take one."
On if he put QB Dan Orlovsky in because the game was out of hand: "Yes, it was out of hand. The game was out of hand, and we wanted to put Danny in."
On if there's any question QB Jon Kitna will be the starter next week: "Yes."
On if WR Calvin Johnson had a problem getting off the line of scrimmage against the Packers: "Those guys do (a good job), it's a challenge there. And they were, going into the game we knew it. They were tight coverage; they're a bump-and-run team. When you have big receivers like that, that's something you have to constantly work at."
On if it was a conscious decision in the third quarter to start throwing everything over the middle: "Yeah. And we tried to get him (Calvin Johnson) in some of those slants. It's a big guy going inside and using good body position."
On what he tells the team about how to handle this loss, after getting such momentum: "The thing I told them, we fought to get back in the game. I congratulated them on that point. But this league's about winning. And in the crunch time in the fourth quarter you have to execute and do your job, and that's when money players step up and make plays, and that's what you have to do. That's what this league's about."
"I thought the things that broke down - one was contain. When you get outside like that, the guy bides time, and it hurt us. And he's a mobile guy and we knew that going in. And then like I said, the pass, we fell down one time; you can't fall down. We got beat in man coverage over the top, can't happen. And those things, you just have to make plays.
"We'll always look at the film first and we'll do what's right to get the best players on the field.
On if the 21-0 start bothered him more than the finish: "It all bothers you. 21-nothing, that's unacceptable. And then not finishing it, after we fought our way back into it - it's just unacceptable. It's not what this league's about; it's about winning."
LIONS QB JON KITNA
On the disappointment of coming back and then what happened in the fourth quarter: "I don't have any words for that. You battle your whole way back and you take a lead and then they come down and kick a field goal and you try to come back and we thought we could get them on the play Calvin scored on them. But instead of having Calvin run that route - kind of run a pump route - Charles played it really good. There are no words, really."
On how he views the three interceptions: "It's all on me. There's no miscommunication. Like I said, the first one we thought we could get them on a double move on the play that Calvin had been kind of beating them on all day and Charles played it really good - the back shoulder throw. The next two, the game had kind of gotten away from us and just played right into their hands. As a quarterback you just need to be smarter than that."
On if he just lost focus for a minute: "No, I was totally focused. It felt like you were throwing to open guys and they just had guys step right in front of them. Charles (Woodson) - second interception just sprinted to the sideline and grabbed it. Mike was open and the same thing on the last one to Calvin. He's coming in there - felt like he was open - and the safety just dove down in front of him and cut him off. I don't think it was a lack of focus. I guess in that situation you've just got to be even smarter."
On if it makes it tough that he didn't come through as a quarterback: "Well, you just can't come through every time, I guess. Unfortunately today it didn't work out. Like I said, we kind of fought our way back into it, took a lead and then when we needed it the most we didn't get it done - I didn't get it done."
On if he's lost confidence in himself: "No. I've been through this before. Every quarterback that's played this game goes through something like this. You just have to bounce back from it."
On if he still thinks they can be competitive in the division: "I believe so. I think we saw that, until the last six minutes of the football game we were right there, even ahead, against the cream of the crop, really, in our division. We've just got to learn how to finish and we didn't do that."
LIONS WR ROY WILLIAMS
On if he thinks dropped passes by he and WR Calvin Johnson early in the game could have changed the tone: "Yeah, it could've been the difference, but the game is 60 minutes. We both made up for our drops. The game goes on."
On if this loss feels any different after the Lions came back from 21 points down: "It's just another loss. It's another loss. We've just got to get back to work and get ready to fly across the country and play the 49ers."
On if he takes any positives away from the team's play in the third and early fourth quarter: "We have to come out that way. We've got to come out firing. We can't keep trying to come back from these 21-0 deficits. Offensively, we've got to score in first quarter and get some points on the board. I take full responsibility for that, we've got to get into the end zone. I hope it happens next week."
On if he thought the Lions were in for another loss after trailing 21-0 like they did in the Atlanta game: "No, but it ran through my mind, 'it's 21-0 again.' But, once again, I think that we can come back and win this ball game, just one play, one snap at a time. We slowly did that and then we just don't know how to put the nail in the coffin."
On the defense giving the team a chance to win late in the game: "Our defense is really good. They had to put it on tape, they put it on tape in the fourth quarter today. That's the defense that needs to show up in the first and second quarter. I know that they can do that, but we have to help them on the offensive side of the ball and put points on the board. If they score seven points, we have to come back and score as well, and we haven't been doing that. But our defense is a really good defense. I promise you, they're really good."
On if he thinks QB Jon Kitna is responsible for the interceptions he threw late in the game: "No, not at all. It's a group thing. The offensive line probably had some mistakes, the receivers had some mistakes, the D had some mistakes. So, we all made mistakes out there today, and we just need to get ready for next week."
LIONS WR CALVIN JOHNSON
On how difficult the loss was today: "It's tough, like Coach (Marinelli) said after the game, we've got to put the nail in the coffin. We just got to get back tomorrow, see our mistakes, learn from them, and try to make adjustments on Wednesday when we go back to practice."
On if the team felt out of the game after Green Bay took a 21-0 lead: "Honestly, we weren't even looking at the scoreboard. It was just the first half, so whatever they can do in the first half, we can too. The scoreboard wasn't really a factor until the game was over with."
On if he thinks the 0-2 start to the season could be critical as the team moves on this season: "Not at all. Not saying that we're the Giants, but they were in the same hole last year, so we can bounce back."
On his touchdown receptions: "Jon (Kitna) helped me get into good position, with a good play call and gave me the goods."
On looking to the film for the mistakes leading to losing the lead: "Yeah, we've got to, tomorrow go back and watch this film. Watch and see all the mistakes, everybody made mistakes.Â Go out there and see what mistakes we made, correct them come Wednesday."
On his juggling catch during the third touchdown: "Yeah, just happened to get one hand on the ball, popped it up. I was able to keep focused on it.Â I guess the safety must have taken a bad angle, and I thought I was going to give it back, pop. I guess he took a bad angle and I got in the end zone."
On how the team bounces back from a loss like this: "Do the same thing we did last week: just watch film, see what (mistakes) we made, make adjustments this week and have another good week of practice. Having a good week of practice doesn't guarantee a win, but it helps your chances.Â So that's what we have to do."
LIONS DT CORY REDDING
On taking the lead, before giving it up because of mistakes: "That's tough. That's a hard one to swallow. Yeah, we had a chance to win the game, but, we didn't capitalize. That was tough today."
On taking a little solace because the team came back from a 21-0 lead: "We showed flashes of heart. We showed, we stuck together, nobody pointed fingers. We came back in the locker room at halftime and we regrouped. And we went out there and for the most part stopped the run, and held them to three points, until the fourth quarter. But, at the end of the day, it wasn't good enough."
On bouncing back from this loss: "All I know is: go back to work on Monday and get ready for work, that's all.Â You got to put it in throughout the week, and just come out next weekend and fight our butts off to get a win."
On giving the fans credit for sticking with the team late in the game: "Hats off to our fans. I know it was a little rough, got booed, quite some boos in the day. But, towards the end, they rallied behind us, and helped us get back to having the advantage of a one point lead.Â So hats off to our fans, keep it up, and we got to come back to work next Monday."
LIONS DT SHAUN CODY
On the team's play at the beginning of the game: "We did a great job of just playing one snap at a time after that, but in the first half, we can't come out like that. It's going to make it impossible for us to win."
On the positives he can take from his game: "I think what we can take from this game is, yeah we got our butts kicked in the end, but it was a spark that we showed. I think for the first time this season that we showed we could play offense and defense at the same time and mount a comeback. We've just got to find a way to play like we did in the third and part of the fourth. We've got to find a way to play like that the whole game."
On if the team got down after falling behind 21-0: "Not me personally - you can't expect to spot a team 21 points, it's impossible to come back from that kind of stuff. We did a good job of trying to rally and come back, but in the end, you can't just start like that. We put our offense in the hole and they can't run their game plan, and then they're attacking us."
On how the team controlled its emotions: "That's what we're trying to find out. We haven't done it yet. We got some spots where we played like a defense that we can show. But until you play like that for a whole 60 minutes or even a whole half, we are what we put in tape and that's a defense that last week couldn't stop the run and this week couldn't stop the pass. So we have to find a way to stop both."
GREEN BAY HEAD COACH MIKE MCCARTHY
"Well, it's a transition period, and I think anytime your team goes through a transition, whether it's positive or negative you need to make sure everybody stays the course, and I just didn't want to see any panic, which I thought the sideline was great, guys stayed up, no one blinked, and I really think it showed the character of our football team, the way they responded."
On CB Charles Woodson's performance in spite of his toe injury: "Charles is a great player; he's been a true pro for us, time and time again. He has the ability to play through injury - (he) didn't even practice all week and to go out and perform at the level that he did today, I just can't say enough about him and what his production obviously meant to our win today. I felt this individual, he turned that game around in the fourth quarter."
On QB Aaron Rodgers: "I thought Aaron put together a fine performance. There are a couple of things he can learn from. I thought he did a really good job of using his feet to stay out of bad situations; very decisive with the ball. I thought he threw the ball very well today. I thought he had a real nice day today."
"I think the play call reflected. We kept pushing the envelope, and I think that speaks volumes about the coaches and everybody involved and the confidence within to stay aggressive, and I think we managed it very well. I think its part of the growing process.
"And the play caller and the quarterback, and everybody goes through it when you're playing games for the first time, and it's definitely something we can build off of as we move forward."
On what it's like for the team to come through in the situation it was in: "Well winning on the road is very difficult, and that's something that we've spent a lot more time preparing for as a team with the crowd noise and so forth, especially playing in a dome stadium up here, so it's very important to start stacking successes to go into an environment that challenges you, and I'm just pleased with the way our team finished the game."
On injuries: "We had Korey Hall with a knee, did not return, I don't have specifics. Atari Bigby had a cramp in his hamstring, did not return."
GREEN BAY QB AARON RODGERS
On today's game: "(It) reminded me of last year, we were in a similar situation. We were up 34-12, I believe, and they came back and made it 34-26 before we put together a good drive to put the game away. We talked about it at halftime, it was 21-3. We said, 'Don't get complacent. This team has a run in it. We need to stop them.' You have to give credit to Detroit; the defense really locked us down in third quarter. We put together a lot of drives, but I'll tell you what: you have to take your hat off to the guys up front. They did a nice job protecting. Greg Jennings had a big game. I told them in the huddle, we were down 25-24 on the 10-yard line; I said, 'Now we're going to find out what we're made of.' And we did. We made a couple of plays, got down there, got a field goal, would have had a big pick, and Brandon had a nice run to put the game away."
On if there was added pressure on him as a leader after the team lost the lead: 'Oh yeah, my idol growing up Joe Montana was a guy who could always bring his team back in the fourth quarter; a guy who his teammates trusted with the ball in his hands late in the game, and you don't want to have a lot of comebacks because you want to be ahead in the game, but unfortunately our lead dwindled. Detroit got the crowd back in the game, and we were able to put together really one big play, Greg Jennings with a big catch and run, and then big field goal by Mason, and then the turnover really put us in a good position."
On if he could describe what he saw during Jennings' play: "They were playing one-high. It looked like man coverage outside leverage. We had a similar play on the previous drive where I kind of tried to hit Greg real quick. I threw it behind him and was pretty upset at myself so we had a different formation but we came back to a similar play call and just a quick slant by Greg. I feel like, and I know our coaching staff does as well, if you can get Greg Jennings the ball with separation, good things are going to happen, and he was able to make a big play."
On seeing it for himself: "I did, you know, I just want to make sure my pre-snap read stayed the same at the snap and post-snap, and Greg did a nice job, he made a quick route adjustment, and we were able to hit a big play."
PACKERS WR GREG JENNINGS
On how it felt for him to make a big play to set up the go-ahead field goal in the fourth quarter: "Exciting. Obviously, just trying to make some plays and help the offense get rolling. We went down and were able to make a play and put us in good field position and kick a field goal and get back on top to regain the lead."
On what happened to set up his 60-yard reception in the fourth quarter: "No blitz. They were kind of in a man-look. Aaron gave me a quick look and gave us dibs on the front side. My guy was kind of off and kind of pressing to the outside. The middle of the field was wide-open, so he just threw a good ball and I was just able to make some yardage."
On a missed opportunity for a big gain on the prior drive: "That was another huge one. We didn't connect on that one, but it came back to us again and we were able to capitalize."
On what this victory says about QB Aaron Rogers and his team: "That we never give up. Obviously, it shows that he's very poised, and as an offense, that we can settle in and actually move the chains when we need to. We were able to just make plays and get ourselves out of some situations that we shouldn't have had ourselves in, but we did."
On the opportunity to play in his home state: "It's just football. I've just been fortunate when I come here to make some things happen for the ball club and we've been fortunate to get some wins here. So, it's a team effort. It's not just myself, it's everybody in here. Obviously, the defense stepped up huge and some big key stops and some pick-sixes and things like that. It's just exciting when you come back home."
PACKERS RB BRANDON JACKSON
On what was going through his mind after the Lions took the lead: "Just going out there and trying to make a play and give the offense a chance to come back and win."
On redeeming himself after he dropped a pass in the fourth quarter: "I was hurting after that drop. Normally, I would never drop balls like that. Just coming back and learning from the mistakes, just trying to make a play."
On what the biggest positives were in today's game: "Just holding onto the ball, running physical and just downhill running. The O-line did a great job blocking."
PACKERS CB CHARLES WOODSON
On Detroit coming back to bring the score to 25-24 in the fourth quarter: "They fought hard. That is the way it is in the NFL. You have to play until the last whistle, and they did that. They came out fired up in that second half and put points on the board. (Calvin) Johnson came up with a couple big catches and got touchdowns, one of which I was pretty upset about. They fought until the end. For us, we just had to keep grinding it out. We made some big plays late, came up with a couple big scores on defense and got the ball back for the offense one time. That is what you have to do when you are in these types of dogfights."
On matching up with WR Calvin Johnson for his first interception: "We were pretty much matched up all day in regular sets, unless it was three wide or four wide. In that particular Tiger set, I went to him. They tried with maybe a stutter-go, fade-stop type of thing, and I was there."
On the game being a personal homecoming: "Michigan, Detroit, Ann Arbor is home for me. I have friends here. I met up with some friends yesterday and caught up with those guys. Anytime I am back here, it is a good feeling. I had a lot of great years here."
PACKERS DE AARON KAMPMAN
On making key defensive plays in the fourth quarter to impact the game: "We knew that once it went 25-24, we had the opportunity to go out and hopefully do some good things, and we did. We got the takeaways and that is the most critical stat in football. We got those and to score on top of that makes it very hard on the opponent to come back."
On it becoming a close contest in the fourth quarter: "As I said, they get paid, too. They made some plays. They broke a couple of long pass plays -- poor angles and poor tackling on our part and not enough pressure up front. Like I said, they get paid too. They have some talented receivers over there and a good quarterback. I am just glad, in the end, we were good enough to bounce back and handle the adversity, which is going to help us down the road, and get the win."
On CB Charles Woodson's play: "He didn't practice all week. Sitting on the training table and to come out and perform like this is just tremendous. He is a professional; he knows how to take care of himself, study and get ready to play. That says a lot about him."