Emotional Patricia Confident That Lions Will Break Through

"Obviously the goal is to win...and we will."

Will Burchfield
November 28, 2019 - 8:28 pm
Martha Ford

© Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

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Matt Patricia was emotional after the Lions' loss to the Bears Thursday, but not in a way that would suggest the end is near. 

Just the opposite, in fact. 

Patricia spoke with pride about the fight his team showed, and how, eventually, that fight will fuel the 'process' he spoke about this week. Detroit played the Bears tough with third-string quarterback David Blough, but once again came up short at the finish. 

"I think that team, our team, is one of the toughest teams that I’ve ever been around," Patricia said. "This team fights probably like no other team that I’ve ever seen. We have to find a way to win and break through that thing that’s stopping us right now and smash that so we can get this thing going. You want to talk about a tough team, a team that fights, a team that will try to do everything they can to win – that’s what we got right now.

"Obviously the goal is to win, and that’s what we have to get done, and we will. We’re building towards that and we’re working towards that every single day." 

The Lions are one of only three teams in the NFL -- along with the Chiefs and the 49ers -- to lead in every game this season. All they have to show for it is three wins, which is why Patricia's future has come into question. He spoke with owner Martha Ford and her daughter, Sheila, on the field for a long while before the game, in what appeared to be a congenial conversation, and he sounded after the game like a coach who hopes -- and maybe expects -- to stick around. 

"When you take a look at today’s picture and see us go out there with our third-string quarterback that we got after training camp, and watch that team rally behind somebody like that, I think you can tell how much all of those men in that room care about each other, how hard they work for each other and how much they’re trying to win for each other. They don’t really ever stop, they don’t ever give up," Patricia said. "I’m proud of those guys for that.

"Obviously, from my standpoint, I always want to do more to help those guys win. I have to do more, I have to just keep pushing that so that we can break that thing that’s stopping us right now and get going. Once that happens, I feel really good that we’ll be there." 

Patricia is 9-18-1 as Detroit's head coach. He was hired to take a 9-7 team to the next level. The results would seem like grounds for termination, but it might be that ownership has the same faith in his larger plan as Patricia himself.

A lot can change in the weeks ahead, but for now, anyway, Patricia sounds safe. 

"We’ll go back to work," he said. "I’ve said it all the time you don’t sign up for one, you don’t sign up for two, you don’t sign up for four of these games, you sign up for all of them. We’re going to go out, and we’re going to compete for all of them and we’re going to work, and we’re going to grind it away."