Lions coach Matt Patricia talks about the need for his team to improve its fundamentals. Justin Rogers, The Detroit News


Allen Park — The players watching film Monday of another disappointing loss are good enough, Matt Patricia said.

But despite what the coach called solid weeks of practice lately, the Lions aren’t getting it done on Sundays with the basics.

“Fundamentals and execution is what’s holding us back right now,” Patricia said. “That’s where we need to start.”

That started Monday with the film breakdown of another lopsided loss, which sunk the Lions’ fading playoff chances further down a hole.

The tape revealed few common threads in the breakdowns that led to 10 Vikings’ sacks in the 24-9 road loss, sinking Detroit to 3-5.


“It’s a team thing,” Patricia said. “There’s not one thing for all of those to occur.

“If you have that amount of sacks that you’re giving up in a particular game, and it was one thing, we would try to get to get that one thing fixed in the game.”

Rookie offensive guard Frank Ragnow said there were a myriad of reasons for the breakdowns.

“I can’t point to anything in particular, there’s a lot of things that we can all improve on,” Ragnow said, adding that it was painful to watch the film: “10 sacks. Not fun.”

It’s a confounding puzzle that needs solved quick, as Chicago could have pass rusher Khalil Mack back, adding to an already formidable defense, after he missed the last two games with an ankle injury.

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The NFC North-leading Bears (5-3) have allowed the third-least rushing yards per game with 84.9 yards, have 24 sacks to tie for seventh in the league, and are second in the NFL with 14 interceptions.

After a day away from the facility for the players on Tuesday, the Lions will work starting Wednesday to open a second half of the season that needs to be much better than the first if meaningful football will be played around here this winter.

“I think we’ve shown how good we can be, it just comes down to consistency,” Ragnow said. “We just got to execute. That’s what it all comes down to. That’s what our job is on Sundays is execute.”

Patricia said he may add a couple periods of fundamental work this week at practice and show clips of solid fundamentals from game days to reinforce them.

“Every single day, we’re just trying to get better,” Patricia said. “For me, it’s the details of everything that we’re going to try to improve on. It’s important for us at this point to go back to fundamentals and basics.

“That’s probably a bottom line.”

Matt Schoch is a freelance writer