Quarterback Jared Goff explains how the Detroit Lions’ mentality aided them against the Arizona Cardinals, despite being double-digit underdogs.
The Detroit Lions entered the game against the Arizona Cardinals as double-digit underdogs.
Over the course of 60 minutes at Ford Field, the team that executed significantly better and had the better gameplan walked away with the 18-point victory.
While many thought the Cardinals would avenge their Monday Night Football loss to the Los Angeles Rams, it was the Lions, led by head coach Dan Campbell and quarterback Jared Goff, which walked off the field enjoying the fruits of their labor.
Detroit’s coaching staff had to make significant adjustments, including playing Will Harris at cornerback, against the high-powered offense of Kliff Kingsbury.
The offensive line was reshuffled, as left guard Jonah Jackson missed his first game of the season.
“You learn how hard it is to win, and then you win a game like today against arguably the best team in the league. On paper, we don’t match up with them. On paper, we don’t,” Goff told reporters, following the Lions’ 30-12 victory. “On defense, we had Will Harris playing corner. I don’t know what they did on him, but I would imagine it wasn’t much. Brady Breeze just got here, and he’s playing safety a little bit. (Alex) Anzalone goes out, and he’s one of our better players. You’ve got Craig Reynolds playing running back. You’ve got Jermar Jefferson playing running back. Tommy Kraemer is playing guard.”
Lions head coach Dan Campbell explained that Harris has been willing to aid the defense in any way he can.
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“Let’s see if he can go out there and play a little bit, and let him be aggressive,” Campbell said. “It’s a credit to him, and by the way — he is like, ‘Coach, what do you need?’ AG (Aaron Glenn), AP (Aubrey Pleasant) talked to him, and he’s like, ‘Coach, I’ll do whatever you need.’ And that’s a credit to him.”
Harris’ play also earned him praise from the defensive back who played opposite him on Sunday, Amani Oruwariye.
“’Mr. Do-It-All,’ man. We call him ‘Mr. Do-It-All,'” Oruwariye said. “There’s nothing he can’t do. He knows the system like the back of his hand. He’s just a plug-and-play guy. I thought he competed well. I’m so proud of him.”
Despite being part of a season that will finish with double-digit losses, the roster has continued to battle for each other and the coaching staff.
It would have been easy for the roster to fold up shop and mail it in. But, it is showing no signs of slowing down, going into the final three games of the 2021 season.
“It’s next man up, and it’s the idea of it doesn’t matter who’s out there,” Goff said. “We’ve got a good coaching staff that we believe in and a good fight to us that allows us to win games like this.”