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The din of the collective Lion roar is pinging from the walls of its own den, with massive, ear piercing feedback. Coach cheapcatch was sent in to revive the Lions, a team that scored on its opening possession of the season on a nifty 51 yard Billy Sims touchdown run, only to evade the scoreboard the next two weeks. Is scoring a touchdown against one of the new rules? So, yes, that was seven points scored in three whole games (now 10 in four games). In particular, cheapcatch was summoned to revive the wayward Eric Hipple (21%; 0 TD 5 INT), and an anemic run game. Cheapcatch explained his plans for the Lion quarterbacks: ‘I wanted to play Gary, but he was in BAD all game. Moving forward, I don’t care if Gary is in HORRIBLE because Hipple has been WRETCHED. HORRIBLE is above WRETCHED, right? Or are they not even of the same ilk? You get my point, though.’

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It is not just coach cheapcatch exhibiting frustration. ALL-PRO running back Billy Sims was livid following a third quarter lost fumble by WR Leonard Thompson, who was slated as the second RB for most of the game against the Rams. ‘We finally get some momentum going. I got my legs underneath me. I was feeling great. We are moving the ball. No disrespect to Leonard or to coach, but give me the bleeping ball. There is no reason to give Leonard the rush there.’ Coach cheapcatch, himself, says the Leonard Thompson running back experiment is finished. It is over about as soon as it began. ‘I expected a little more pop from Leonard on those runs. Thought he could get the edge to the outside. I sent him inside once, and that’s when he fumbled. It’s as much on coaching decision as it is on player performance,’ said cheapcatch. The coach also noted the horrible run blocking performance by his offensive line. ‘No doubt, we will be doing some shuffling. You’ll be seeing David and Horace King in there more. You can’t have two guys flying directly to the ball carrier on every play. I don’t care if Billy Sims is the running back. It took Billy 30 yards of running to gain 8. That isn’t going to cut the proverbial mustard.’

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After blanking Green Bay in the opener the defense surrendered 75 points in two games. There is a saying that says, ‘You can’t fix slow. You can’t fix sucky.” Or something like that. Detroit only surrendered 13 points against the Rams, but cheapcatch admitted he was none too confident in his defense. ‘Yeah, we were afraid of Farmer getting behind us. I tried to set us up for success. I thought our coverage was good. We were right there, but we just couldn’t make the plays.’ Cheapcatch was also displeased with the Detroit run defense, ‘Too slow getting to the ball carrier. Our backers were absent. Defensive line couldn’t get off their blocks. Credit the Rams. They held the point of attack. They neutralized our strength to say the least.’ The coach also admitted his outrage watching Willie Miller gash the Lions on a 21 yard run. ‘Can’t happen. Our guys were treating a 13 HP wide receiver like he was going to bulldoze them. No one was around. No one wanted to make the play, apparently.’ Coach cheapcatch did not shy away from his disappointment in the starting safety duo of Ray Oldham and Alvin Hall. ‘High hitting power is a great attribute to have. We have two safeties with high hitting power. That is great and all, but hitting power doesn’t bring down open space.’ Finally cheapcatch was asked about what Alvin Hall was tripping over on a run play where it initially appeared Hall did a great job shedding a block. However, once en route to the ball carrier, Hall looked as though he were repeatedly bouncing into an invisible wall. The coach simply lowered and shook his head, claiming through a mumble, that the invisible wall theory was as good as any. As cheapcatch left the podium he offered this about his team, ‘I don’t know what to expect from this team. We are not a good team right now, I do know that.’



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