Despite winless start that 'stings,' Dan Campbell confident Lions are closer than they appear to be

Dan Campbell Lions practice
Posted at 1:34 PM, Oct 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-06 16:05:24-04

ALLEN PARK, Mich. — NFL teams like to split the season into quarters, evaluating where they stand after each set of four games.

The 17-game season has slightly altered that theory, but four games into the Brad Holmes and Dan Campbell era, there aren't any wins to show.

This season was always going to be observed and evaluated through a different lens in Detroit. A new regime, so much talent moved out of town: there was always going to be pain before any sort of glory.

“0-4 stings, but we’re not as far away as it looks,” Dan Campbell said on Wednesday. “We’re a couple plays away from winning that game last week.”

Injuries are piling up. Cornerback Jeff Okudah and linebacker Romeo Okwara are both out for the season with Achilles injuries. Starting left tackle Taylor Decker hasn't played yet. And now Frank Ragnow is on injured reserve, with rookie tackle Penei Sewell slowed by an ankle injury.

"He's a little banged up. We’ll see where he’s at," Campbell said before Wednesday's practice. "He’ll probably be limited today if not out and then we’ll go from there."

The Vikings are always tenacious with their pass-rush. The Lions may be missing three of their starters on the offensive line in facing Minnesota.

"We’ve gone back and really tried to look at what we do well," Campbell said. "We’re four weeks in. What do our guys do well? Knowing what we have up front moving forward and what they have, how do we help? The plan is catered that way, somewhat."