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Caldwell addresses media after Lions' playoff hopes dashed: 'Season's not over yet'

Lions' dismal loss in Cincinnati ends playoff eligibility

Matthew Stafford #9 of the Detroit Lions talks with head coach Jim Caldwell prior to the game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on December 24, 2017 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by John Grieshop/Getty Images)
Matthew Stafford #9 of the Detroit Lions talks with head coach Jim Caldwell prior to the game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on December 24, 2017 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by John Grieshop/Getty Images)

DETROIT – Detroit Lions coach Jim Caldwell spoke to the media Tuesday afternoon two days after the team was eliminated from a chance at playoff contention

The Lions (8-7) needed a win Sunday in Cincinnati to keep their playoff hopes alive. However, they couldn't capitalize against an injury-stricken Bengals team, falling 26-17. 

Detroit imploded in the second half with a holding penalty and false start to let the Bengals (6-9) win in front of a half-empty stadium. 

"We're more interested in wins than we are in stats," Caldwell said. "We just need to be more consistent in that area."

It's the second time Caldwell's Lions will miss the playoffs in his four seasons as head coach. However, just making the playoffs hasn't been enough for Caldwell and the Lions. They were bounced twice in the Wild Card game, first by the Dallas Cowboys in 2014 and then again by the Seattle Seahawks in 2016. 

With a talented -- and highly-paid -- quarterback Matthew Stafford leading the team, Lions fans have reason to be frustrated yet again. They are looking to General Manager Bob Quinn, who is in his second year with the Lions, for answers. 

Caldwell remains focused on finishing the season. 

"It's not over yet. Season's not over yet. We still have a game left," he said. 

But the Lions are done for the season after they host the Green Bay Packers on Sunday. 

"You don't know what's going to happen the next day, the next year. So you got to give it your absolute best," Caldwell said. 

He is not considering resting any of his starters, such as Stafford, in the final game. 

As for any conversations he may have had with Quinn:

"I talk to him every day. But, you know, in regard to that, nothing's changed ... it is what it is. Everybody gets evaluated in the new year," said Caldwell. 

He said he hasn't spoken to the GM about his future and said he "wouldn't tell you if I did."


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