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#pounditSunday, November 28, 2021

Jim Caldwell blames Lions players for offensive problems

Jim Caldwell Lions

The Detroit Lions are the only team in the NFL that hasn’t won a game. It takes a collective lack of effort to start off a season 0-5, but most of the talk around Detroit has been about bad play-calling and a scheme that is too predictable.

Head coach Jim Caldwell doesn’t believe the system is the issue. During an interview with 97.1-FM on Wednesday, he essentially blamed his players.

“From my vantage point, the problem is not what plays are being called,” Caldwell said, via Justin Rogers of MLive.com. “That’s window dressing when you make those kinds of adjustments. Those kinds of adjustments happen sometimes in places, where people can’t stand the pressure and all of a sudden they make the changes. Then the next guy changes, you still have the same problems and it’s somebody else’s fault.

“The fact of the matter of is offensive coordinator Joe (Lombardi) is calling plays that should work and we’ve just had problems executing.”

Caldwell scoffed at the idea that the Lions are last in the league in points scored per game because they lack creativity.

“There are not any new concepts out there. None what so ever,” he said. “I don’t care what team you bring up, there’s been teams that have run it before, there’s been teams that have executed it before and concepts that have been worked. There are no new revolutionary design.”

Perhaps the Lions need some revolutionary design, because it sounds like several opponents have known what plays Detroit was going to run before they snapped the ball. In fact, we saw an alarming example of that in last week’s blowout loss to the Arizona Cardinals.

The one thing I will agree with Caldwell on is that a predictable offensive scheme could not be solely responsible for an 0-5 record. Even if a defense knows what’s coming, you still have to execute and they have to find a way to stop it. The Lions haven’t exactly done a good job with the execution part.

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