1. Attributing woeful run defense to injuries
This is that lack of urgency that was mentioned earlier. After the Lions racked up 191 rushing yards against the Commanders, Rivera said he’s “not concerned” with the run defense and implied the defense is dealing with key injuries.
"“But having said that, they still ran against us,” Rivera said. “We came out the second half, we responded, we battled and we did some good things. I think you’ve got to look at more than just what you see on the surface. There’s a lot more to what happens.”"
How can you make excuses after THAT performance. D’Andre Swift played on a bum ankle and looked like prime Barry Sanders. Yes the Commanders’ defensive line is banged up and losing Daniel Wise and Casey Toohill to injuries didn’t help, but the Lions were also missing their entire interior offensive line, including two Pro Bowlers, and still produced 8.0 yards per carry in the game. How do you explain that?
It just comes off as weak.
We’re fine with Rivera attributing some of the struggles to injuries, but to say your “not concerned” as your team ranks 29th in rushing yards allowed (314) and dead-last in yards per carry (7.7) is a bizarre hill to die on.