"I'd prefer not to be here right now," says Mike Valenti -- but here we are. It's one step forward, one step back for the Lions after a crushing overtime loss to the shorthanded Seahawks in the home opener at Ford Field.
"I thought we were done with having to lower our expectations, but that’s where I’m at," Valenti says. "I have to lower my expectations for this team because they’re not ready. Yesterday was unforgivable. That was as rat-ass, sloppy, nonsense a performance as you’re going to see.
"10 days rest, coming home, a team coming to town who has no playmakers up front and street free agents at both offensive tackle spots and you hit the quarterback one time. This team went out and made mistakes that they just don’t make. The defense on third down was able to do nothing — nothing — and Geno Smith beats us again."
Add it all up, including injuries to running back, David Montgomery, pass rushers James Houston and guard Halapoulivaati Vaitai, and Valenti says he's "terrified" for what might lie ahead. The 2-0 Falcons come to town in Week 3:
"I gotta be honest, people, I am terrified. It’s an on-the-brink week for me. That loss really bothered me, hurt me, disappointed me. I’m super bummed out, man. I just can’t believe they found a way to lose this game."
Valenti says he "can't rationalize" why Dan Campbell, typically so aggressive, "would play for the tie at the end of the game with a pocketful of timeouts." He was also stunned by the pick-six thrown by Jared Goff, who was closing in on the NFL record for consecutive passes without an interception. And he was peeved that Jahmyr Gibbs walked away from the game with seven carries on a day that Montgomery left early:
"I understood that Jahmyr Gibbs needed to be worked into this thing, but if you use the No. 12 overall pick on a running back, I can’t walk out of a game where the starter gets hurt and he has seven carries. What are we doing here?"
And finally, where was the Lions' pass rush? It won't get any easier for Aidan Hutchinson and the rest of the defensive front with Houston (fractured ankle) headed for injured reserve:
"This game was a loss in more ways than one, including James Houston being out. Great. Aidan is going to face a double team every damn play now, and he hasn’t proven to be able to beat it the way the great players have. That’s not a shot. It’s just reality. He’s a good young player, but there’s a difference between good and great."