Jim Bob Cooter Talks Marvin Jones, Golden Tate, Dwayne Washington

Oct 29, 2015; Chandler
Oct 29, 2015; Chandler /

Detroit Lions offensive coordinator Jim Bob Cooter talked about Marvin Jones, Golden Tate and Dwayne Washington in his press conference today.

During his weekly media availability today, Detroit Lions offensive coordinator Jim Bob Cooter was asked about a number of topics, including Marvin Jones, Golden Tate and Dwayne Washington.

On WR Marvin Jones Jr.’s performance last week and if teams will start to pay more attention to him: “Did some good things, did some really good things. I think it’s always good to be able to do a lot of different things. We’re throwing the ball underneath a lot. Can you get it down the field, you know? Marvin’s able to make some plays down the field, I think that’s good for our offense and if you’re an opposing defense looking at our offense you kind of have to be aware of all threats. I think Marvin went out and made some really big plays. (Matthew) Stafford made some nice throws, O-Line gave him some good protection. It’s a positive development. I want to be able to kind of get the ball wherever we want to on the field. Could be short, could be down the field, inside, outside, all that stuff. It was good to see Marvin go make some plays.”

On WR Golden Tate’s drop-off in production: “Ball gets spread around. Sometimes the ball finds one guy more than the other. I would say it’ll be kind of back and forth all year. Some games one guy gets 10, the other guy gets three or four and the next game it goes kind of vice versa. I would expect him to get plenty of touches throughout the rest of the year. I think it’ll kind of come and go in waves for those guys and that’s including all the receivers, tight ends, running backs. I don’t think everybody’s going to have a big game every game, but I think we’ll spread it around pretty good.”

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On how limited Tate is as a downfield threat and if that has to do with his decline in production: “I think he’s got a lot of strengths, I think he does a lot of things well. We’re working on all sorts of stuff with all our guys. Some guys we throw it to a little more in certain areas, sometimes we throw it to a little more in different areas. I think he’s got certain strengths, we’re not afraid throw him the ball anywhere on the field.”

On if defenses will focus on Jones Jr. more now: “I don’t know, we’ll see.  We’ll see. We’ve got to be prepared for all options. Like I said, we’re going to pretty much throw it to who’s open, so if they want to put two guys on one of our guys then we’re probably going to throw it to some other guys. Our deal is throw it to who’s open and everybody out there, they let us release five every play, so everybody out there that’s running a route, go get open. We’ll throw it to whoever gets open.”

On how having a tight end like Eric Ebron that provides yards after catch affects the overall offense: “I think it’s big these days. I think it’s big these days. You’re seeing a lot of sub-nickel defenses where a lot of times the tight end will get matched up on a safety or a linebacker, has the ability to catch the ball somewhere over the middle of the field and kind of turn that into a relatively big gain. The fact that he can catch it and run with it I think is good for our offense.”

On what Ebron’s production does for the rest of the offense: “Well, hopefully we’ve got five threats out there at the skill positions every play and they all kind of open each other up. Every week, you know, hopefully you guys are asking me different questions about different guys that got hot that week or had a good week. These things are going to come and go, but we’re going to spread it around and at some point you’ve got to cover all five and that’s hard to do.”

On if RB Dwayne Washington is earning a bigger role in the backfield: “I think he’s building confidence in our coaching staff and the other offensive players on the team with the way he’s going about his business, the way he’s playing on Sunday. That’s a good thing for a young player to do. Generally bodes well as he’s going along to kind of keep doing that, keep building confidence in the coaches, the play caller, the quarterback, your offensive teammates, all that stuff. I think he’s doing a good job of that. He’s got to keep it going.”

On what they coaches done to help eliminate ball security issues from Washington’s game: “Obviously it’s a very big point of emphasis for us. I’m a little bit of a believer that you work on it, it’s important, but I’m not a big believer in talking about it. Kind of like, you know, you go play golf, you don’t want to say, ‘Don’t hit it in the water.’ That’s usually a bad thing to say, so we talk about ball security a lot. It hasn’t been an issue, he’s been good with it. A lot of our guys have been really good with it.”

On if Washington’s early struggles diminished the confidence in him from the coaching staff: “I think he had a little bit, and this is across the league, there are certain colleges where the guys cannot show up to practice, to OTA’s until their class graduates, which for him was whatever it was, June 7th. So really, we only had three or four days with him before we took our summer break, so in essence, when he showed up for training camp this was kind of his first time getting reps, first time doing everything. Even though we could sort of get him information and sort of try to teach him things, it doesn’t work as well as being in the classroom, being out on the field doing the things. He was a little bit behind in that perspective. It’s not his fault, it’s just kind of the system that’s setup. He’s done a good job building on that since then.”

On if Washington’s ball security issues specifically early in camp diminished the coaching staff’s confidence in him: “I wouldn’t say so. We were all working on a lot of things early in camp and we all had a lot of minuses out there, including myself. We were all working on a lot of stuff at that time, he’s been great with it since then.”

On if he can tell the reason behind his offense going from not clicking to clicking over the course of a game: “We’re always aware of kind of what the defense is doing and if they’re kind of changing what their game plan is or whatever. We didn’t put a lot of points on the board early, we kind of started slow. We had some nice drives that kind of stalled out in the high red (zone), which we’ve got to kind of fix that, but we were still moving the ball early. I think we were still doing some good things early, we just didn’t score enough points. We didn’t put enough points on the board early, but yeah, we’re aware of kind of how teams are playing things and what they’re expecting and what we’re expecting from them.”

On the difficulty of running the football without RB Ameer Abdullah: “Like I said last week, he’s a good player. We lost a good player. Other guys are going to get carries. Some of those guys stepped up, had some good things. We had some issues on certain runs that we’ve got to get cleaned up, but yeah, losing a good player is always going to hurt you. But in this league everybody loses players. You look at our division, there’s spots all over the division where guys are out, guys are injured, so everybody’s kind of dealing with it, but we go forward.”

Sep 11, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Detroit Lions offensive tackle Taylor Decker (68) and offensive guard Laken Tomlinson (72) and center Travis Swanson (64) look on against the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium. The Lions won 39-35. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 11, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Detroit Lions offensive tackle Taylor Decker (68) and offensive guard Laken Tomlinson (72) and center Travis Swanson (64) look on against the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium. The Lions won 39-35. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports /

On if he likes to see emotion out of rookie T Taylor Decker after making a mistake: “Yeah, I mean it’s kind of got it’s pluses and minuses. The guy really cares, he really wants to do well. He’s trying as hard as he can to do well. It’s really difficult I’ve learned for a young guy to be able to maybe put something behind him. I had a bad play in the second quarter, can I throw that away and kind of play a really good rest of the game, and that’s difficult for young guys. They have to kind of work their way through that. They have to learn kind of how to go through that process for them. I think he’s doing a good job of that. He does really care, he really wants to do it right, he’s just still kind of working through some of that stuff.”

On the progress of the pass protection for QB Matthew Stafford: “I think the protection’s better. We’ve had a couple of sacks that have been a scramble, he netted zero yards running out of bounds and that counts as a sack in the NFL official stats. I think the protection’s been better. We’ve got to continue to improve it. That number is too high. We put ourselves in a situation, especially last week, where we threw it a little more than we would probably necessarily want to in a kind of head-to-head, back-and-fourth, neck-and-neck ball game, but the number is too high. We’ve got to fix it. It’s a lot of different factors. We’re working to fix those.”

On what jumps out in studying the Bears defense: “Really solid. Really going to make you work to get yards, to get points. Not going to give up big plays. Tackle well. Really well coached unit.”

On where Ebron has improved from last season: “Just more consistency. More consistency day in-day out in practice. More consistency day in-day out catching the ball. More consistency being where the quarterback wants him to be or thinks he should be.”

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On if Ebron put in any extra work with the coaching staff over the offseason to improve his hands from last year: “He’s been working really hard on a lot of things and that would fall into that category.”

*Quotes provided by the Detroit Lions. Watch the press conference on DetroitLions.com.