On starting the season with a loss:"You invest the whole off-season and the work, and you hope you can get off on the right track. We've done that the first two years around here and haven't followed it up, so the important thing is that we correct the errors that we had, go back to work and try to come back and play a better game this week up there in Detroit."
On the four turnovers by the two guys that will handle the ball most (RB Dominick Davis and QB David Carr):"It happens – there are different kinds of turnovers. Some of them are just earned because the defense has done an outstanding job. If you are careless with the ball, that's when we become concerned. Dominick Davis had the two fumbles. Dominick carried the ball for us an awful lot last year and didn't really have a fumble problem. David Carr, other than those two plays – the one ball was a batted ball at the line and the other one was in a two-minute drill at the end of the first-half. He just didn't step into the throw. Each time it was kind of an afterthought to him."
On giving up 60-percent of third down conversions on defense:"We've got a couple new guys in the secondary. We have a young rookie that started for us for the first time. Then we've got a new free safety that we moved there. San Diego did a good job. I give them credit. They did a good job on third down against us. A few of those were third-and-longer situations, which you never want to have converted. That's an area that we have to improve in. I believe that we can. We've got the potential to do that. On the other side, we did a better job on offense of converting third downs. We've got to do a better job on defense of getting of the field."
*On picking Carr over QB Joey Harrington and DE Julius Peppers in the 2002 draft: *"We liked everything about David. We certainly spent an awful lot of time with him because we didn't have a team to coach that year, so I would look at an awful lot of tapes, spent a lot of time with he and his family. As all of those decisions are when you're talking about the first player picked in the draft, they are difficult decisions. The other two guys that you mentioned were certainly worthy of the consideration. We just had a gut feeling on David and decided to go with him. We certainly held Joey Harrington in very high regard – same thing with Julius Peppers. We just felt that the right thing to do was to pick a quarterback to start your franchise with. David happened to be that guy."
On Carr's progression compared to Harrington's progression:"I think David is playing his best football. I thought he played very well through the preseason. Other than the two interceptions, I thought that he threw the ball well and directed the team very well on Sunday. I look at Joey; he's made an awful lot of strides. I have not studied him as much as I have David and been around him, but he looks to me like he's comfortable managing the team and he's a talented guy and he's capable of making plays. He's got good movement. He runs around well. He doesn't take long. He catches your attention when you're getting ready to play the Lions."
On the development of LB Jason Babin:"I've been very pleased. I thought that one of the bright spots in the game on Sunday was his play. I thought he made eight-nine-10 plays that just kind of stand out in your mind that you'd hoped to see him make. He had to tackle (Chargers RB LaDainian Tomlinson) in the open field. He came hard off the edge and forced a fumble. He was active and did some very good things I thought for his first start."* *
On similarities between the Lions and Texans offense:"I think that we've both been trying to build something from scratch. Our first year, two years ago, we started five rookies on offense. Last year we added Andre Johnson and Dominick Davis to that group. This is really the first year that we've had a group together that has played together for a while. I think we'll see our offense continue to grow. We've got more experience in the offensive line than what we've had. Similar to Detroit, I look and I think Detroit has an excellent offensive line. They've got outstanding young, skilled players. I think we've got similar situations from what we've done from an offensive standpoint."
On the progression of the offensive line:"I thought from year one to year two, we made tremendous strides. Year one, we kind of had to throw two rookies in there. They weren't ready to play yet. When you're starting from scratch, you've got what you got. We'd taken Tony Boselli in the expansion draft, but that didn't work out so we had to put Chester Pitts out at tackle and he started at tackle for us for two years. We've moved Chester into guard. We've move Seth Wand in at left tackle. The right side of our offensive line has more experience. We've got Todd Wade in free agency from the Miami Dolphins. He's playing right tackle for us. We've got Zach Wiegert at right guard and Steve McKinney at center. We just have more experience in the offensive line. I'm encouraged by what I see with them. I think Chester Pitts is going to be a very good guard. That's what we drafted him for. We had to put him out at tackle because he was our best athlete. He started 32 games and never missed a play for two years at left tackle. I like what I see with our line. I think our line will continue to get better as the season goes on."
*On the process of determining whether the roof is open or closed at Reliant Stadium: *"I (determine that). We make the decision on Sunday morning. A lot of times it is going to be based on the weather as the primary factor. We've had it both opened and closed. We had it closed last week based on the fact that we've been working on our indoor practice facility for the last couple of weeks. We just didn't feel it would be smart to open it up because when you're talking about in the 90s and hot and humid down here, it is a little different. If you haven't been practicing outside, it can be a little jolt to you."
On the importance of this road game:"I think every game is important. What you have to do in this league I think is you have to take things and focus in on that week. What happened last week is irrelevant. It doesn't really make any difference. You've got to come back in. The most important thing is what we do today in our preparation and the next day and then being able to get ourselves prepared to come up there and play our best. You have to block out all of the rest of the things. What happened last year, what happened last week – I don't think it is really relevant to this week. We've got to do a great job with preparation. All you have to do is watch the tape of the Lions last week – they went on the road and got a big win. I know that they were 5-3 at home last year. They play very well at home. We have to get ourselves ready to play."
On preparing for the noise at Ford Field:"We always practice with noise in our indoor facility. That's kind of standard operating procedure for when we're going on the road. Most of these stadiums, when you are on the road, are loud and noisy. What I understand is Ford Field is very loud."