In his second season as head coach of the Detroit Lions, Dan Campbell has yet to get a win on the road. This week, the team heads to Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts to face the New England Patriots, and hopefully boost their record to 2-3.
Campbell’s record as the head coach of the Detroit Lions is 4-16-1. Last year, the pivotal point in the Lions’ season was when Campbell took over play-calling from Anthony Lynn. After that, it finally felt like there was hope for the Lions. This season, while the team came with a lot of added hype due to their feature on HBO’s Hard Knocks, the energy and overall work ethic just felt different.
Several players and coaches have expressed how this year verse last year is “night and day,” but for Lions fans, it’s starting to feel like the same old Lions. The team has now lost in three very winnable games due to mistakes in play-calling and a lack of execution on defense.
Coach Campbell is determined to lead this team to greatness. He recognizes the components that aren’t working and isn’t afraid to incorporate change if it’s what’s best for the team.
“I’m not afraid to make a hard decision if I really believed that’s – that’s where it was the cause of it.”
After a horrendous performance from the defense last week, Dan Campbell and Aaron Glenn instilled several changes in hopes of getting their first road win on Sunday.
“We’re in this vicious cycle right now. And so, we’ve got to pull things way, way back and just get our confidence back and getting some trust among teammates. And so, that’ll – that comes with scheme, that comes with personnel, and we’re going to work through it.”
The team is on board, and willing to do whatever it takes to win. With several players out with injuries, coming off a tough loss, and restructuring the defense, you’d expect the vibes to be a bit different at practice, but that wasn’t the case. Moral was high on and off the field. Aidan Hutchinson spoke to the media on Thursday, saying he’s not worried at all.
“You know, we’re just going with the flow, and we’re feeling things out, and we are going to be ready on Sunday.”
Facing Matt Patricia
A win this week would taste a bit sweeter for Dan Campbell and the Detroit Lions as they face former Lions Head Coach, Matt Patricia. This is the first time the team will face the former coach since he was fired in 2020. Patricia has since taken over offensive play-calling responsibilities. Dan Campbell spoke on the difficulties of switching from a defensive coach to an offensive coach earlier this week.
“I think it’s tough, but I also know if you know football and you’re a good coach, you can adapt, and that’s what I see. He’s adapting quickly, and every week it’s gotten – it’s better, and better and better and they’re attacking their opponents. They’re putting together good game plans. They’re using the roster well, so it’s – he’s doing a good job. He really is.”
Long List of Injuries
The Lions are still facing difficulties with their long list of injured players. While they may be without several players on Sunday, most of them come from the offensive side of the ball, which hasn’t proved to be a problem. Without overlooking their Week 5 matchup, Campbell is thankful Week 6 is a bye week for the team.
“You know what’s interesting is normally when you think about the bye, you would love to have it right in the middle of the season. Literally Week 10ish, somewhere in there. But it couldn’t have come at a better time for us. I mean it actually is a blessing. And so it’ll be huge to have this bye next week, because we will get a significant amount of our players back and very good players back. And so, it’s a blessing. Good lord’s looking after us.”
Campbell looks to get his first road win on Sunday verse the New England Patriots at 1pm ET.
Maddy Miller – Detroit Lions Beat Reporter
On Twitter: @madelynvmillerr