Detroit Lions coach Matt Patricia not worrying about next season — or if he'll be back
By LARRY LAGE
AP Sports Writer
ALLEN PARK — Matt Patricia appears to look and seems to sound as if he expects to lead the Detroit Lions again next season.
Patricia’s Lions have lost six straight games and nine of 10, giving him a 9-19-1 mark as a first-time head coach with a franchise that hired him away from New England to be more than just mediocre — as it was under former coach Jim Caldwell.
And yet, Patricia does not give off any hints publicly or privately that suggest he is coaching for his job over the final three games of the season.
“We’ll worry about next year, next year,” Patricia said Monday, a day after a 20-7 setback at Minnesota. “But right now I want to get through today and want to get the game corrected.”
Has Patricia been told he’ll be back for a third season in 2020?
“I don’t get into any sort of discussions that I have with ownership or any of that,” he said. “I’m just worried about this game this week.”
Detroit (3-9-1) hosts Tampa Bay (6-7) on Sunday.
While most coaches say their record reflects how successful their team is, or not, Patricia has a different take on what he sees in the standings.
“The hard thing for us and what I appreciate about this team is we don’t look at our record and say this is what we are,” he said. “I think we look at our record and say that’s not what we are and we’ve got to do better, and we try to figure out how to get the record to match up. And that’s kind of where we’re struggling right now. I think that’s the best part.”
Lions cornerback Darius Slay said he has not picked up on any signs from Patricia that his job is in jeopardy.
“He’s doing a great job of keeping us motivated and encouraging us every day,” Slay said. “He’s keeping his head focused. He’s doing a good of ignoring the media. I don’t talk to him personally, but to us, it just seems like he’s always in a great spirit that he’s always been in so that’s a good thing.”