NEW YORK (Oct. 5, 2011) – Jim Schwartz, head coach of the Detroit Lions, joins Phil Simms and Cris Collinsworth on this week’s edition of INSIDE THE NFL—tonight, Oct. 5 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME— to discuss his team’s start to their season.
James Brown, Simms, Collinsworth and Warren Sapp look at the surprise 3-1 teams and discuss whether the NFL is in the midst of a Wide Receivers Era.
Following are excerpts from tonight’s telecast:
Interview with Jim Schwartz:
About Matt Stafford…
SCHWARTZ: Number one, he has obvious talent. But number two, he’s very used to being a quarterback and that’s important for the profile. As you know, you’re going to be the face of the team. You’re going to be the person that everybody comes to when the team wins or loses. And if you’re not comfortable in the skin of a quarterback you’re not going to do well. And Matt was. He’s been the center of attention since seventh grade. But when you put a player like that in place, you certainly don’t sit there and say we’re going to run 50 times-a-game. He’s a very good decision-maker. And when you’ve got a good quarterback you can cover up some other things on your team. But I think we’ve done a good job of putting pieces in place around him.
About Ndamukong Suh…
SCHWARTZ: With Ndamukong we had a hard time when we were in the draft room trying to find a comparison. A couple people popped out names that hadn’t been heard for about 40 or 50 years. And then the most recent we could come up with was Reggie White. He reminded us of Reggie with his tremendous strength and his incredible balance. And Ndamukong had a very, very good rookie year. But he is still improving. He is still a young football player.
Regarding his comments to Dez Bryant about disrespecting his defense…
SCHWARTZ: I have a lot of respect for the Cowboys’ organization and for Cowboys players, but there was a guy that was celebrating an incomplete pass and he was taunting our defense. And eventually, enough was enough. He needed to know that it was going to be an incomplete pass. So it was just one of those things that happened. I try not to get too involved in the game, but every once in a while something will rub me the wrong way.
The Era of Wide Receivers…
COLLINSWORTH: As a group what’s happening now is they’re putting four and five guys out there. So inevitably, somebody is in a one-on-on situation. But to me the game has changed. You know, the jump balls that you talked about. A Larry Fitzgerald doesn’t have to run a 4.2 to get behind people. He goes over people. We’re seeing the changing of the tight end position a little bit too. The Jermichael Finleys, the Jimmy Grahams down in New Orleans. Now what they’re doing is going three-by-one and their putting these unbelievably big strong tight ends or wide receivers on one side, three on the other…It’s what makes the Packers uncoverable.
SIMMS: Why wouldn’t you want to be a wide receiver growing up?…The other guys that we haven’t talked about…The little guys. That’s a whole other thing. You look at Mike Wallace, some of these fast receivers. DeSean (Jackson), these little skinny guys that you can’t cover them because they are so fast and quick.
COLLINSWORTH: I really think the game changed. The NFL used to be about power… The defense and the running game and the Miami Dolphins and the Larry Csonka and all that kind of stuff. Now they decided the best way to run the football is to spread everybody out.
INSIDE THE NFL, now in its 33rd season, will air every Wednesday night through the NFL season on SHOWTIME for a total of 23 episodes, with multiple replays each week on SHOWTIME and SHOWTIME EXTREME® and availability on SHOWTIME On Demand.
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