Corey Williams, Chris Houston Call Out Lions Teammates After Loss
The Lions, 2-9 after a 45-24 loss on Thanksgiving Day to the Patriots, may have finally reached their breaking point. Following the game, Detroit defensive lineman Corey Williams and cornerback Chris Houston took turns calling out their teammates in the wake of a fourth straight loss.
Williams (pictured top right) accused some of this teammates of lacking heart and said that certain players are just collecting paychecks, according to Jennifer Hammond of FOX 2 Detroit.
"There's a bunch of guys that need to be called out," Williams said, according to the Detroit Free Press. "A bunch of guys need to look in the mirror, realize that there's more to it than just playing in the NFL. There's more to it than getting paid. You got guys, everybody out here got their career on the line, you know what I mean? You can easily take your last snap at any moment, so I think guys need to take it more serious. I don't think guys take it serious enough."
Houston, meanwhile, said that some Lions gave up after a few big plays by the Patriots.
"Some people are young on the defense," Houston said, according to MLive.com. "If you see somebody not saying nothing that you think is leading, the younger guys see that, and they're not going to have the same heart and go out there and play hard. They're gonna look at the older guys and see how they're slacking, and they're going to slack too.
"So we have to have the leaders step up and lead because we're so young. We're trying to find somebody."
It was probably only a matter of time before things unraveled a bit in Detroit -- the Lions, while they've stayed competitive most weeks (including Thursday, when they led 17-10 at halftime), have once again seen their season fall apart. Dating back to Week 10 of the 2007 season, the Lions have a nearly unbelievable 5-46 record. That mark includes a 4-23 record under second-year head coach Jim Schwartz.
The Lions let loose some frustration on the field Thursday, as well. A pair of scuffles broke out late in the fourth quarter as the Patriots scored their final touchdown. Detroit was flagged for one unsportsmanlike conduct penalty following BenJarvus Green-Ellis' 1-yard TD run, then hit with two more unsportsmanlike conduct penalties following the ensuing extra point. By rule, the Patriots could only enforce two of those calls against Detroit, but still kicked off from Detroit's 40 after the touchdown.
Neither Williams nor Houston specifically named any teammates, but Alphonso Smith was picked on by both the Patriots offense and the CBS announcing crew throughout the game. Smith was victimized on four of New England's touchdowns. On the Patriots' first score, Green-Ellis simply ran over Smith en route to the end zone. The Patriots then beat Smith's coverage three times for touchdowns -- the worst being a 79-yard TD pass to Deion Branch, in which Smith blew his assignment on Branch, then failed multiple times trying to bring him down.
"That's the main thing I'm talking about, guys just got to know how to fight back," Williams said, the Free Press reported. "If somebody comes up and sucker punches you, you're going to hit back, right? You're not going to just lay down. And the same with the team. They're going to make plays just like we make plays, it's all about how we bounce back and right now we ain't got that attitude or the fire to bounce back once they make a play on us."