ALLEN PARK, Mich. — Detroit Lions coach Jim Schwartz has consistently praised reserve running back Joique Bell this season.
Those days might be changing, at least for a while.
Bell was the one responsible for the Lions getting a 15-yard penalty for celebrating their second touchdown, when they took a 14-0 lead early in the second quarter. The penalty was enforced on the kickoff, giving Green Bay good field position and leading to a long field goal that helped give the Packers a jump-start in their 27-20 victory Sunday night.
“I think maybe I’ll start to check some of my compliments for Joique Bell,” Schwartz said Monday during his weekly news conference. “That’s a young player who’s done some really good things for us this year and has done a good job of capitalizing on an opportunity.
“But it’s a bad decision like that that could potentially limit his opportunities. We certainly don’t want to see that happen.”
Receiver Tony Scheffler scored the touchdown and was in the middle of a lengthy celebration, which included pretending to shovel snow on a snowy night at Lambeau Field.
Bell, who played college football at Wayne State in Detroit, joined Scheffler for the snow-shoveling move, which automatically drew the flag.
“Not very smart,” Schwartz said. “The league has always given leeway for guys that make plays, as long as you’re not taunting or suggestive or anything like that. One person can Lambeau leap. When you get into choreographed stuff, then they draw a line.
“The line is specific in the rule book. You can’t have two people with any kind of choreographed thing.”
Schwartz doesn’t want to take away the emotion of his players. He just wants them to be smarter.
“Emotion, excitement is part of this game,” he said. “If your guys make a touchdown and nobody high-fives each other and they walk off the field, everybody’s probably saying, ‘Hey, they’re playing with no emotion. They’re not even happy. They’re not even celebrating.’
“There’s certainly a line there. We crossed that line.”
Defensive tackle Nick Fairley, who has been playing extremely well in recent weeks, sustained a shoulder injury late in Sunday’s game. Schwartz said Fairley needed to undergo tests to determine the extent of the injury.
The same was true for tight end Brandon Pettigrew, who injured an ankle.
Schwartz also indicated that cornerback Jacob Lacey re-aggravated his foot/Achilles injury in the final minutes.
Schwartz added that Lacey previously had returned to play after he “got kicked on one play in a spot you don’t want to get kicked.”
Asked who kicked Lacey in the groin, Schwartz said it was a Green Bay player before clarifying that it wasn’t intentional.
“He got hit in a spot you don’t want to get hit,” Schwartz said, correcting his choice of words.
Schwartz, on the personal foul against defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh for a late shove on Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers: “The quarterback’s out of the pocket. Usually get a little more leeway. It’s a bang-bang call. The way that Rodgers scrambles around, if he pulls that ball down and starts scrambling, you sit there and say, ‘How come you pulled up on the guy?’ Didn’t hit him in the head, didn’t hit him with his head, pushed him. They called a penalty. We’ve got to live with it.”
… Schwartz, when asked if any of the Lions were among the NFL players who reportedly have turned in their guns to team security since the murder-suicide involving Kansas City’s Jovan Belcher: “I’m not going to comment on that here.”
… Schwartz, on quarterback Matthew Stafford throwing an interception when he and receiver Kris Durham weren’t on the same page on a pass route: “It comes down to the price you pay for losing three receivers. That’s Kris Durham’s first game he’s played. He’s practiced an awful lot with Matt, played with him a little bit in college.We didn’t have him in training camp. We didn’t have him in the off-season program. Those are things that come from a long time together, seeing things exactly the same way. That certainly cost us.”
… Schwartz, on Stefan Logan slipping when he had a large opening on a kick return in the second half: “’Looked like there was a lane there’ might be an understatement. There was a big opportunity there. That was obviously a big play. They had just scored. We got a chance to either get a really long return or even break one. Field conditions were slippery. Got to find a way to keep our feet there, stay under control. It would have just been the kicker to beat.”