Schwartz isn't patient; Sims has "switched his swagger"

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Good article from Associated Press football writer Larry Lage on the Lions:

Linebacker Ernie Sims said the 2008 season is out of sight and mind.

“It’s out of my head,” Sims said. “Last year is over with and we’re focusing on the new year with a totally new team. We’re switching our swagger around.”

First-year coach Jim Schwartz relayed a message he shared during a team meeting, kicking off the three-day minicamp.

“Patience is no longer a virtue. Indoctrination is over,” Schwartz recalled telling the team. “There are new schemes. There’s new philosophies. There’s new coaches. There’s whole new dynamics. A significant number of players on the team are new.

“We need to get past it now and we need to start seeing results on the field.”

Schwartz also reiterated that he won't be naming starters at ANY positions for months, no doubt in an effort to sharpen competitiveness.

Lage also gets comments from Calvin Johnson, Kevin Smith and Jon Jansen as the minicamp got under way:
“It’s definitely a different mindset because we have a bunch of new players, who have brought a new energy,” Johnson said. “I’m looking forward to playing with these guys.”

Running back Kevin Smith, one of the holdovers, said the players are approaching the upcoming season as a new start.

“This is the 2009 Lions, not the ’08 Lions or the Lions that won it in ’57,” Smith said.

The Lions have put together a hungry bunch of players. Jansen, for example, joined the franchise soon after the Washington Redskins cut him.

“There are a lot of guys who want to prove a point,” he said. “I want to prove that I’m not done. A lot of guys want to prove that last year wasn’t them.”

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