Lions Head Coach Dan Campbell – Media Availability – October 24, 2021

Lions Head Coach Dan Campbell – Media Availability – October 24, 2021


(Opening Statement)

“Just credit the Rams. They’re a good football team and they earned that win. I thought our guys played hard, we just made one too many mistakes.”


(On how tough it is to still lose after playing so aggressively)

“It’s frustrating. It’s frustrating, but we felt like we could gain an advantage there and see if we could get some possessions back. They helped, but it wasn’t enough. It’s too good of a football team to make (errors). And you’re not allowed to make one or two errors against a football team like that. That’s what’s tough, is you get in those types of games against them. It comes down to us trying to make a play in the pass game there towards the end to get in the endzone and (Rams DL) Aaron Donald – we did a pretty good job for most of the day – and then he gets us on one and there you go.”


(On if that was Rams DL Aaron Donald that broke up that play and not Lions QB Jared Goff’s fault)

“No. Well, from what I could see, (Lions QB Jared Goff) he’s under duress. Like you can’t (not be under duress going against Donald). Good luck. Now, I’ll watch the tape. I could be wrong, but I felt like he was under duress. (He was) not able to throw that football like we needed him to. (Rams CB Jalen) Ramsey made a hell of a play too. It’s just, you can go a whole game and all of a sudden, something like that happens and it’s too much. It’s too good of a football team.”


(On how he feels about his team going toe-to-toe with the Rams and still being 0-7)

“Look, we are what we’re our record says we are. That’s the bottom line about this league. Now I know this, our guys come back to work. They were ready to go. They believed in the plan, they executed the plan for the most part, minus a couple plays, and that’s what happens. You give up your shot player, we’re not ready for a blitz, and now he’s got all day long to see it. It’s just too tough.”


(On if the aggressiveness in his play calling was designed or if he saw something specific that triggered him to make those calls)

“Yeah, we had them ready to go. We felt like the time was right. (Lions Special Teams Coordinator) Dave Fipp did a hell of a job. We talked about it all week and those guys executed the plan perfectly all week. A lot of faith in those guys and especially in (Lions S) C.J. (Moore), (Lions P Jack) Fox throwing it, (Lions CB) Bobby (Price), (Lions K Austin) Seibert on the kick, (Lions S) Tracy (Walker) got the ball, (Lions LB Josh) Woods and (Lions S) Jalen Elliott. They executed all week. It just gives you a ton of faith. We had a feel the look could be there and so we wanted to give it a go.”


(On how he would assess how Goff did today)

“I thought he was good enough to win with, for what we were trying to do. I sure did. I thought he gave us a chance. We knew we needed to play this game a certain way. And really, we did that. We wanted them to try to make them to play a little bit more of our game. (A) track meet was going to be hard for us. We needed to try to stick around to the fourth quarter and find a way to win it. We had an opportunity there at the end and then they got an interception.”


(On the pass play that he mentioned Donald was bearing down, was the window for Goff to make a complete pass non-existent)

“You trust in your player. That’s (Lions TE T.J.) Hockenson, that’s one of our best players. It’s something we worked on during the week. We want them to rip it in there. Let’s let our guy go make a play. Otherwise, if you don’t and Aaron Donald’s coming, then it’s a sack. So, I would blame that more on me for design or us or whatever. Don’t blame that on him.”


(On team’s effort last week and responding in this game)

“Yeah, absolutely. Our guys came back to work, man. They were ready to go. I mean, we came out and competed. We did what we wanted to do. It’s just, you know, and it’s hard. There’s no other way to cut it. Then just the fact that it’s a different caliber team. You can argue that for last week. That’s a pretty good football team we played last week too. But this is a team that’s been built over years, and they’ve got some weapons, they’ve got some, premiere players and they got a good coach. So, you talk about we made too many errors. Well, we actually didn’t make as many errors today as we’ve made. We gave ourselves a chance. The problem is, is that now it only takes a couple and that’s what happened and this team’s too good to do that against.”


(On the 4th-and-1 play call)

“That’s on me. That’s my fault. I called for that. I called for that. “


(On what he would like to have seen done differently on 4th-and-1 play call)

“Well, had we done it all over again, we would have tightened the wing up, which I should have done.”


(On the tight end that came across)

“Because he ended up kind of bottlenecking it up. That’s all me, that’s 100% me.”


(On decision to go for it instead of kicking a field goal)

“I just felt like, you know what? If you’re going to do it, this is the time to do it. Let’s do it. Let’s catch them off guard. I liked the play, and it didn’t work out. That’s on me. Of course, hindsight, we kicked a field goal, it’s irrelevant.”


(On Lions RB D’Andre Swift)

“He’s a stud. We’ve got to give him the ball. We can’t get him the ball enough.”


(On defense in the 3rd quarter and Rams QB Matthew Stafford)

“No. Well really what happened on the big shot we had the pressure dialed up. We loved the play. We weren’t ready. We were kind of getting our feet set and looking, they kind of got to the line with a little tempo and we weren’t quite ready. So, our rush is just a tick late, and now he gets a little bit more time to see it and he’s able to push it down the field. So, he found it, but we could be better. We can be better.”


(On quick snaps, rush up goal line)

“Actually, I thought we handled it pretty good, and we prepared all week for that. AG (Offensive Coordinator Aaron Glenn) did a good job with those guys defensively. So, I thought we were in tuned for that stuff. We were ready. I didn’t feel like we were caught off guard. Well certainly that one, but it’s more, ‘Let’s go. Urgency to get your feet set, ready to go.” I thought for the most part, for most of the game, we did. But guess what? There’s one play. You’re not ready. And guess what happens? Where he’d get hit over the top and now, they’re in plus territory.”


(On caring deeply about players and team and how to galvanize the guys)

“You just tell them what I told them in there. If this does not continue to sting and burn and taste like you know what, then you got a problem. You cannot allow yourself to go numb. You can’t. Cause I’m not. All it does is just piss me off even more, you know? And it just motivates me to want to get out of this mess. So, I do think we have the right type of guys and so as long as they continue to hate this taste, they’ll come back to work and be ready to go. They will. And I think we got the right type of guys to do that. I do.”