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Dan Campbell: 'I'm Built For Adversity'

Detroit Lions head coach explains his current temperament, now that his team sits with an 0-7 record.

Dan Campbell hasn’t been fazed by his team’s winless start to the 2021 NFL season.

The first-year head coach of the Detroit Lions knows the journey to contending for playoff spots is a long way away with the roster he currently has. However, that hasn’t shaken his belief in the guys he has.

As the season goes on, Campbell knows things will continue to be tough on his team. However, he believes he is built to withstand the struggles. Before the season started, the new Lions head coach told his team he was “built for adversity.”

“That’s the way I’m cut, man,” Campbell said. “It makes me want to dig in more, is what it does. Maybe I’m stubborn.”

His team has started the season 0-7, but has been competitive in every game but one. The Lions put a scare in the Los Angeles Rams, one of the consensus best teams in the NFL, on Sunday but came up short.

Now, the former tight end is pushing forward in hopes of giving his squad better days.

“I’ve seen it, I’ve lived it, I’ve done it,” Campbell said. “I’ve been at the highest highs, and I’ve been in the lowest lows. So, I’m ready for this, and I’m not giving up. I’m not giving up on any of these guys. I’m not listening to the lack of talent talk. I don’t buy any of that.”


Headset issues at SoFi Stadium

In Week 7 against the Rams, the Lions suffered a crucial delay of game penalty after spiking the ball in the second quarter. The penalty halted momentum on a drive that ultimately ended with a field goal.

Looking back, Campbell said there was a headset issue that hindered the coaching staff’s ability to get plays in.

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“(Goff) can’t hear it, it’s not coming in,” Campbell said. “So, something was going on with that play, because he couldn’t hear the play from (offensive coordinator) Anthony Lynn. And, neither could (backup) David Blough. So, it’s one of those things, man.”

Detroit’s head coach said these issues pop up multiple times throughout a game. To combat this, Campbell said the team may need to adopt a different play-calling strategy.

However, with this being a part of the game, he said the team has to be ready and keep moving forward the next time headset issues occur.

“I would say it’s not anything totally abnormal,” Campbell said. “We had this when I was in New Orleans. Stuff would happen.”

Goff's interception to Jalen Ramsey

Goff threw a key interception in the end zone to kill a fourth-quarter drive. Pressure from Rams defensive lineman Aaron Donald forced the quick throw, a throw that went into triple coverage and was intercepted by Los Angeles star cornerback Jalen Ramsey. 

Looking back on the play, Campbell said the offense needed to run better routes to open up more room for T.J. Hockenson, the intended target. 

Campbell explained that tight end Brock Wright could’ve taken some of the defensive attention away by running a tighter post route and diverting the defense’s attention in the process. 

Doing so would’ve taken some of the coverage off Hockenson and given Goff more room to make the throw.


  • Another important young player suffered an injury that may be significant. Campbell said the specific details regarding defensive back A.J Parker’s injury aren’t known at this time, but he feels that Parker could be done for a while. “We don’t quite know yet,” Campbell said. “My gut says he’ll be down for a little while.”