Jeff Backus

Hondo:  Jeff first of all talk about camp. Getting out here working out big season coming ahead for you, a lot of expectations.

Jeff:  Absolutely but right now we’re just worrying about working on our fundamentals and worrying about what we can accomplish today we’re not looking too far ahead and worrying about the season right now we just want to keep working keep trying to get better each day.

Hondo:  What do you think you have to do to be better next season?

Jeff:  I think we just have to hone in on our fundamentals the coaches have brought in their guys now and we’ve been in the systems for a year and we just have to sharpen up on everything I think if you watch practice you can see that we’re getting better.

Hondo:  Three offensive line coaches in three years, does that affect you or at this point you’re a veteran you simply do your own thing?

Jeff:  You never do your own thing, the coaches are there for a reason and you listen to what he has to say and you try to let him help you get better. You constantly want to keep improving in this game otherwise you’re not going to be around if you’re not getting any better and you just learn to deal with the situation and the changes and take what you can from all the coaches you’re around.

Stanley Wilson

Hondo:  Stanley, for the lions to have a  big year, you have to roar in ’07. How excited are
you, I mean to know it’s your spot now.   You’ve got to be excited now? 

Stanley:  Yeah, I’m extremely excited.  It’s a great opportunity for me and I’m just basically trying to prepare myself to go throughout 16 games and be a starter that can really make an impact on this team. 

Hondo:  Last year you were playing to make a team and this year you got a spot, now you know that you’re the guy. Does it allow you to take some chances maybe to explore a little bit, because it seems like you’re a lot more comfortable in your role this year.
Stanley:  Yeah it definitely does. You never know what the coaches or administration are thinking but when they feel good about you it gives you a sense of security and be able to take chances and make plays that normally you think you might mess up or miss normally. You might be really worried but to have that sense of security is a good feeling.   And I don’t take it for granted. I just want take as a chance for me to really shine

Hondo: One of the things that you do so well is your instincts to put a head on the ball.  You really play better in a Tampa 2, it fits your game more.  Woud you not agree with that?

Stanley: Oh Definitely, I love playing cover 2, and coming jamming receivers, and coming up and making tackles.  That’s what I like to do best.  I know I’m not the biggest guy, but I don’t think that my body captures my mentality as far as how I play. So, I think that it’s gonna be a good fit for me, and I’m just looking forward to going out there and making those types of plays that I know I can make.

Hondo: Talk about one of the things off the field that impressed the team last year is that here you’re a young kid that has come in and you’ve got leadership skills, character skills.  Life hasn’t always been the fairest with you, but you’ve made lemonade out of lemons.

Stanley: Well yeah, definitely, you’ve always got to look at the positive side of things in the situation and if you work hard it will pay off.  That’s always been my mentality as far as making sure that each and every day that I come out with my lunch pail and just work hard each and every day, and make sure that I am and eventually make a pro bowl or help my team to a world championship.  That’s ny goal, and I think that’s everybody’s goal on the team.  And I think that our coaches are trying to instill that mentality with us.  I’m just another guy on the team that’s really here to work and bring the Detroit Lions a Championship.
Boss Bailey

Hondo:  Talk about how you’re feeling physically, it seems like you’re healthy?
Boss:  Yeah, physically I’m feeling about as good as I’ve felt since my rookie year man, it feels great to feel good, you know, and its gives me some time out here on the field to get these mini-camps in and OTAs and really hone down my skills so I can try to have that championship performance next year.

Hondo:  You were known in college to be a guy with instincts you’re rookie season, those shined, are those coming back to you because I think it’s natural that they would be rusty?

Boss:  Yeah, it’s a little natural to be rusty but just like I said being here in the off season and being able to do everything, having no limitations on anything, I feel like this is my second year, like I’m coming off of my rookie year and that’s a good thing man because I want to go into the year knowing everything I have to do to be successful.

Hondo:  There wasn’t a lot of smiles last year Boss, and this year your practicing and there’s smiles, the teams attitude, this is a different team in my perspective, would you agree with that?
Boss:  Definitely man, there’s a lot of positive energy coming from the head coach on down and everybody’s feeling good but we do know that we got to work to get anything in this league and especially us because nobody expects us to do nothing so we know we have to work extra hard, harder than everybody else to get some success.

Hondo:  Any smack talk coming with champ now, come on, you’ve got to have a little, there’s gonna be some head to head here, going to be some playing me nib? Got any of that going on?
Boss:  Yeah, you know it’s just one of those things where you just don’t want to lose to somebody you talk to everyday and I’m sure he’s feeling the same way so especially with Dre being over there too I talk with both of those guys a lot so we’re going to do everything in our power to get that W.

Kalimba Edwards

Hondo: For the Lions to roar, they need a big season from you.  How excited are you?

Kalimba: I wouldn’t say excited, I just have a lot of expectations. And I’m gonna go in and do what I know I can do.  I was telling somebody earlier, I stopped feeling the pressure, I’ve got to apply it to the offensive tackles, and hopefully things will come out on a positive note.

Hondo: Talk about that, at the end of last season you really took off.  Was it maybe coming in with the pressure, the big deal.  Do you think that kind of affected it at the beginning??

Kalimba: Yeah, it had a lot to do with it.  But Marinelli taught me, he was telling me for 15, 16 weeks, stop feeling the pressure.  They had given me the money, and I was like “I have to perform, I have to perform”. The Cowboys game he benched me, he said “I’m gonna sit you down”.  And that made me angry.  And that was the first time I learned how to apply pressure, instead of feeling it.  I went out and I was mad at my opponent. That’s basically what applying pressure is.  He puts the pressure on me, I’m gonna take the pressure and put it on somebody else.  If they can handle it, so be it.  If they can’t they’re in trouble, know what I mean? 

Hondo: Talk about this defense, it has to have you.  One of the things I’ve told people was last year when all the pundits and the critics said “Oh, they have to get a new D-End” No they didn’t. They have you and Dewayne (White).  I think that stuff just gets in your stomach and that’s just more on a motivation, isn’t it?

Kalimba:  Oh. most definitely.  I had some ups and downs with these Lions in regards to playing time, putting up proper stats, so forth and so on. But motivation comes from a lot of different ways.  You can be self motivated, you can get negative motivation from people not believing in you.  So whatever it is, whether it’s negative or positive, I’m gonna take it.  I’m gonna apply it to someone else, I’m not gonna feel anything anymore.  I can fully understand how to do that now.  I can tell you, wait for the season and you can see the results.

Hondo: One of the things that impressed me about you is when you came into the league you were a good young kid, but now you’re a man.  There’s been a maturation process in you, and I really sincerely felt that last year at the end of the season, I said “I really think Kalimba is gonna come back” Would you just talk about that?

Kalimba: You know, maturity is a funny thing.  Sometimes it’s forced upon you, sometimes it gets to come as slowly as it wants.  It was forced upon me when Marinelli touched down here in Michigan.  I survived 5, 6 years of athletic ability.  I just would go out, make a move and get a sack.  Nobody would say “you have to get this, or you have to do that”.  The first time someone did that to me, I crumbled.  And like I said at the end of the season he didn’t let the pressure up when I crumbled, he kept applying it.  So eventually I had to learn how to deal with it, or stay crumbled.  And I learned how to deal with it.  And it made me mature, just that fast. And here I am today, with a totally different mentality.  I have to show the fans my mentality on the field with regards to getting sacks. 

We apologize to the great Lions fans that can’t watch this as a video which would be much better for the fans.  The new recent stupid NFL rules prohibit that.  So even though you can’t see it anywhere else since Hondo was the only reporter to do it, here is at least the transcript.  Thanks Goodell.