Dan Campbell: “When you lose that way, that’s a setback”


After an embarrassing loss to the Carolina Panthers on Christmas Eve, Detroit Lions Head Coach Dan Campbell says the team will be ready for the next one.

The Lions lost in an atrocious fashion with a final score of 37-23 on Saturday in Charlotte.  The defense was nearly non-existent, and the offense struggled against a hungry Panthers defensive line.  Coach Campbell wasn’t fond of their performance, and even called it a “setback” in a press conference on Monday.

“Look, we just had a loss, we had a setback. That’s the thing – that’s what’s a little frustrating is it does feel a little bit like a setback. Losing’s one thing, but when you lose that way, that’s a setback.”

The Lions had been playing like one of the best teams in the NFL over the last seven weeks. Saturday, they played the worst defensive ball they have all season. The Panthers controlled the game on both sides of the ball from the first snap of the game.  Running backs D’Onta Foreman and Chuba Hubbard were absolutely unstoppable.  Carolina managed to rush for 320 yards, the most in franchise history.

While it frustrated many players and coaches about the loss, their mindset still hasn’t changed.  This team is well aware of how it feels to be counted out and they have showed nothing but resiliency throughout the season.  They now have gone on two different three-game winning streaks, showing that they can win.  While Saturday was quite possibly their worst performance of the season, they are determined to get back up and grind.

“It stings. It’s awful. But man, it’s the best thing that could happen to us because I think no matter who you are in whatever you do, some of your best work is when you get your face kicked in. And so – I mean that literally, I don’t know everybody gets their face kicked in – but man, when your back’s against the wall and you get trotted on and everything’s at its worst, you either stay down there or you get up and you come back motivated and upset with calculated energy and aggression and man you go, and there’s a purpose. And so, I think this is the best thing for us.”

Up Next for the Lions

Coach Campbell emphasized the laundry list of things they did wrong in Saturday’s game.  He says they lacked in several different areas of the game, including detail and discipline.  However, while he recognizes these flaws in the team’s performance, he says it’s how they respond to the loss that defines who they are.

As the team prepares now to host the Chicago Bears in their final home game of the season, Dan Campbell says they will be 100% ready.

“We’re going to do everything we can in our power to correct everything that came up. We will – we’re going to make sure we’re ready, 100 percent ready. So, our guys, they come in Wednesday, they’re going to be ready to go. We’ll prepare for every look that Chicago has.”

Kick-off on Sunday at Ford Field is set for 1pm ET.

Maddy Miller – Detroit Lions Beat Reporter

On Twitter: @madelynvmillerr

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