Building depth on defense a point of emphasis for Schwartz

Posted by ttwentyman on January 9, 2012 – 9:04 pm

Injuries are a part of life in the NFL.

Teams who are able to overcome them with good depth on the roster are usually the ones left standing in the end.

The Lions were hit hard by injuries on defense and it certainly affected them toward the end of the season.

Heading into the Thanksgiving game against the Packers in Week 11, the Lions ranked 9th in total defense, 27th against the run and 5th against the pass.

They lost safety Louis Delmas and corner Chris Houston to knee injures against the Packers and suffered other nicks and bruises over the course of the next few weeks. Delmas didn’t return until the playoffs and Houston was never 100 percent.

The injuries hit the Lions hard.

They ended the season 23rd in total defense, 23rd against the run and 22nd against the pass.

“We didn’t adjust well to dealing with those injuries,” Lions head coach Jim Schwartz said Monday. “How much of it was due to losing Delmas and Chris Houston and Willie (Young) and Lawrence Jackson and those guys? We lost a lot of depth on our D-line; we lost a couple key players in our secondary.

“I think you look at the injury situation: our offense, other than the running back position, was relatively healthy over the course of the season. Defensively, I don’t think we could say the same. It’s the same defense, I think, after about week 8, 9, 10, whatever it was, (that) was top-10-type defense. Obviously we didn’t finish that well.”

That’s an understatement.

The Lions allowed a combined 90 points and 1,176 yards of offense in losses to the Packers and Saints to end the season.

Just as important on the Lions’ offseason to-do list as re-signing defensive end Cliff Avril and linebacker Stephen Tulloch is continuing to build depth on defense.

Injuries are a part of life in the NFL and the Lions need to put themselves in a better position to deal with them.

“We certainly still have work to do there,” Schwartz admitted.

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Posted in Lions Insider Tim Twentyman | 8 Comments »

8 Responses to “Building depth on defense a point of emphasis for Schwartz”

  1. By Irvin Howard on Jan 9, 2012 | Reply

    Defense is what we need DB and if you looking for a sleeper RB in the 3rd round there a RB from Cincinnatic name Isaiah Pead,he a verry good RB,that some people do not know about him.Take a look at him he a verry talented RB.

  2. By paul b. on Jan 10, 2012 | Reply

    I hope these guys get what they need to keep them but at the same time i hope they understand cap room for other player you need to keep and get. I am not saying be cheap with them by no means. just hope we can offer them other things some how to keep them happy . Maybe redo some other deals or something. Just do not want to see us lose an good people over money …

  3. By mountainlionfan on Jan 10, 2012 | Reply

    Ohh– sorry!

    I forgot:
    Sign Backus & Riaola to very cheap 2 yr deals to allow us depth & some time while we continue to draft OL– or let them go if unwilling & make earlier priority. My guess is they want to stick around to see the final lap of this turnaround & not many teams will invest heavily in these guys.
    I really like Gunther as DC — hut I am also a DC for High School & just dont understand why he lines the entire DL in same positions almost every play– Suh should be moved all over line as he was a bit more last season, same with KVB?? Help me here on why not a lot more stunting?
    I am not sold at Levy at OLB– just not the same there; Durant sure didnt stop the run– I think both are backups in our system ideally. Tulloch is a fairly important l.t. signing & yes, CJ neds to be signed NOW so Lewand can plan around it for next few years & his signing will also impact other signings.


  4. By charlesghawley on Jan 10, 2012 | Reply

    Thankyou Martin Mayhew and Jim Schwartz for a great year. I sent a
    critical letter asking you to keep coach Schwartz for year #2 . I said there
    was a playing problem not a coaching problem. You certainly have
    adressed that issue and I congradulate you both. Looking for abetter
    next season. Charles G Hawley.

  5. By brian on Jan 10, 2012 | Reply

    the lions realy need to find or draft a corner and a safty for sure.that was a real weak area this year.Here’s hoping we can inprove the backfeild for 2012

  6. By Will on Jan 11, 2012 | Reply

    At least SOMEONE in the organization recognizes where the problem lies. Not like in years past when our offensive and defensive lines were horrid while they dumped millions into QB’s and WR’s that flopped. The D-line is one of, if not, the best in the league and the O-line’s pass protection greatly improved (they just need to learn how to open holes for the run game now). That and dpeth in the secondary and LB positions is all we need to be late playoff contenders next year.

  7. By GMoney67 on Jan 11, 2012 | Reply

    If that O-line hasn’t learned how to run block by now, they aren’t ever going to. The entire defensive backfield needs to get scrapped, with the exception of Delmas. I’m sorry but Chris Houston was not impressive by any stretch of the imagination. Sure he had a couple of INT’s but so did Cliff Avril, Stephen Tulloch, and Bobby Carpenter, and they’re not even DB’s. Allowing 6 TD passes by a backup QB in green bay and having multiple dropped INT’s in the Saints game tells me that none of those dudes needs to be back on ANY NFL roster in 2012.

  8. By Detroit Lions #1 on May 3, 2012 | Reply

    I think the Lions stacked some depth at defense in the draft, they pulled a lot of athetlic and successful defensive players that really have a chance of developing quickly.

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