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News » Detroit Lions Notes, Quotes 2009-04-03

Detroit Lions Notes, Quotes 2009-04-03

Detroit Lions Notes, Quotes 2009-04-03
--During his first team meeting, new Lions coach Jim Schwartz showed the players a picture he used to have in the defensive meeting room at Tennessee, where he was the defensive coordinator the past eight seasons. It was of the 100-meter final at the 2004 Athens Olympics, in which four hundredths of a second separated gold from no medal at all. "It had nothing to do with talent," Schwartz said. "It was all about technique. It was all about preparation and that perfect performance. There is a little bit of that in the NFL."

--Schwartz has said the Lions won't draft anyone first overall unless they are completely comfortable with him. But considering all the variables at quarterback, how can they be completely comfortable with a QB? General manager Martin Mayhew acknowledges the draft is an inexact science, and quarterback is particularly risky. "You just can't ever tell what's in here or what's here," Mayhew said, tapping his heart, then his head. "You don't know until you know. We're going to feel completely comfortable with everything we know about. But until the lights come on opening day, whenever that is, and he steps on the field somewhere, you don't know."

--Schwartz's old boss, Tennessee coach Jeff Fisher, was asked if there was any way to gauge how a quarterback prospect would deal with the day-to-day pressure of leading an NFL team. "I think there is," Fisher said. "You can go in the evaluation process and find out how he responded on the practice field over the last couple years. I will tell you this: If anybody's going to thoroughly exhaust all possibilities and uncover each and every stone, it's going to be coach Schwartz. There will not be any surprises."

--How difficult will it be to reach a deal with the No. 1 pick, considering the rule changes related to the last year of the salary cap under the current collective bargaining agreement? Mayhew said the agent will receive recommendations from the NFL Players' Association, and the Lions will talk to the NFL management council. "The big thing is going to be marrying up what those entities say about how the deal should be structured and coming to an agreement on structure," Mayhew said. "I think once you get an agreement on structure, then the money will fall into place."

QUOTE TO NOTE: "That No. 1 pick, man, that's always the scary one. Isn't it? Isn't everybody always trying to trade out of that deal, from what I hear? Aren't those guys always trying to move back? They want to be where I'm at, kind of?" -- Tampa Bay coach Raheem Morris, whose Buccaneers hold the No. 19 pick, asked if he would be enthusiastic about taking a quarterback at No. 1.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: April 3, 2009

Jeff Backus Name: Jeff Backus
Position: OT
Age: 30
Experience: 8 years
College: Michigan
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