Detroit Lions : Fan Questions After A Victory


Oct 18, 2015; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions tight end Timothy Wright (83) celebrates his touchdown with wide receiver Calvin Johnson (81) during the second quarter against the Chicago Bears at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

The Lions snapped their seven game losing streak, which dates back to last season, with a 37-34 overtime win against the visiting Chicago Bears.

Fielding questions after a win is a breath of fresh air. Instead of worrying about job security, the questions revolved around players as opposed to personnel. Without further adieu here are this week’s #AskASideLion questions. If you would like to submit a question to be answered in next week’s edition, use #AskASideLion on either Facebook or Twitter.

Why is (Teryl) Austin still giving players like Van Noy less snaps when linebackers are looking shabby during the game? -Ken K.
Van Noy hasn’t exactly been getting many snaps aside from special teams. Van Noy saw 0 defensive snaps against Seattle, was inactive against Arizona, and 6 defensive snaps against Chicago. But I get your drift. The guy looks incredibly lost on defense. Austin mentioned in the off-season that they had packages in mind for Van Noy, and were looking to see a great progress with Van Noy from last season to this season.
The only logical explanation is that they have invested a 2nd round draft pick in Van Noy. Players like Brandon Copeland and Travis Lewis have seen a lot more snaps than the highly touted Van Noy.
Will  Jim Bob Cooter still man the sidelines for Stafford and did he or did he not call the plays last week? -Anon.
The Lions decided to move Joe Lombardi upstairs prior to the Bears game, per Lombardi’s request. Lombardi was still calling the plays, but Cooter was relaying plays from Lombardi to Stafford. The move appeared to work, as the Lions totaled 546 yards in their 37-34 win over the Chicago Bears.

It isn’t abundantly clear if Lombardi choose better plays based off of what the defense presented, or if it was more about the offense executing. I would not expect this system to change. Of course, the Lions were primed for a big performance after struggling with their offense all season.

Was Sunday’s win over the Bears a sign that the Team is coming together and headed in the right direction, or was it a win over a team in similar disarray and an indication that the Bears are in just as much trouble as us? -Nick D.
While I wouldn’t overstate the importance of the win against Chicago, I wouldn’t underestimate it either. A win can give the locker room a little more optimism and reassure that they are on the right path. The first five games on the schedule were brutal. Couple that with poor play and you have a sinking ship. A win doesn’t keep you afloat, but does put a slight bit of air in the sail.

Chicago is not a good team, but they exploited their mismatches against the Lions. Let’s not forget that this game would not have been close if it weren’t for a couple of key special teams blunders. I thought that the defense played well for having their backs against the wall quite often.

Generally it is more telling of how a team responds after a win. This week’s game against Minnesota will be a better measuring stick as to where the Lions are at as opposed to the Chicago Bears.

Updates on Alex Carter? -Jesse D.
Carter re-joined the team for practice this week. However, he will not be eligible to play in a game until after the bye week. He is eligible to return to play Nov. 15th when the Lions head to Lambeau and play the Green Bay Packers.

Last week, defensive coordinator Teryl Austin, asked about when and how Carter would be used this season, spoke with Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press. “We’ll figure that out when he’s able to practice,” Austin said. “I couldn’t tell you. Because of the classes at Stanford, he wasn’t here for most of the OTAs, then when he comes to camp, he’s hurt after a few days. So to tell you that we know a lot about him and what we’re going to do with him, I couldn’t tell you. We’ll have to see when he gets on the field. We’ll try to get him up to speed as fast as we can and we’ll figure it out from there.”

What is the biggest need on defense? -Jeff A.
Currently, the biggest need on defense is for guys to stay healthy. When the Lions played against Seattle it appeared that their defense was beginning to find it’s groove. Tyrunn Walker suffered a broken leg. Haloti Ngata also left the game after wreaking havoc. James Ihedigbo has also been banged up in addition to losing their leader DeAndre Levy prior to the season. If this complete unit had the chance to gel, they would be much improved over their early season performances.
Aside from injuries, the Lions are hurting on the defensive line, more notably on the interior. There is little depth to the secondary as well. Stephen Tulloch started out the season looking slow, but has picked things up over the past two games.
The biggest need going into the off-season on the defense will be defensive tackle. Ngata and Walker both have contracts that will expire after this season.

Next: Detroit Lions Injury Update

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