Leaders Emerging for Lions

Flying in the face of bitter criticism from both fans and media alike, Lions head coach Steve Mariucci will stick to his plan of not playing his starters more than a quarter and starting quarterback Joey Harrington may not play at all during Friday night's tilt with the Buffalo Bills.

ALLEN PARK - Flying in the face of bitter criticism from both fans and media alike, Lions head coach Steve Mariucci will stick to his plan of not playing his starters more than a quarter and starting quarterback Joey Harrington may not play at all during Friday night's tilt with the Buffalo Bills.

But the locker room atmosphere following the humiliating 37-13 defeat at the hands of a supremely prepared St. Louis Rams team on Monday Night Football, has changed.

Quarterback Jeff Garcia blasted the team to the media saying he did not see the sense of urgency needed to become a winning team and that some players need to "step up and become pros." Two-time all-pro guard/center Damien Woody taped a sign in the locker room stating "16-48, the worst record in the NFL! signed, Big Wood." Meanwhile tight end Marcus Pollard, a newcomer to the team has been given the green light from other veterans in the locker room and he also intends to be more vocal.

"To get embarrassed on national TV like that can definitely linger," said Pollard. "We just have to find a way to put it behind us, which is easier said than done.

Pollard said he agreed with Garcia's comments about the team needing to play with a sense of urgency. "He is right. We have to play with more of a sense of urgency and we have to play with more passion. To say we played with less passion and less intensity Monday night is not the case at all, they just came out and played a better game than we did. I have never been in a locker room that was more fired up for a game, ever, than before that one. If we can play with the same intensity and the same passion before the game started throughout the whole game, this team is going to be a pretty good team."

Lions quarterback Joey Harrington didn't want to more read into Garcia's comments than what was actually said.

"I think everybody realizes the importance of playing for your teammates, and that is what people were saying," said Harrington. "When you get in those kinds of games where everything seems to snowball out of control, it is important that you don't lose focus or start pointing fingers. There were a lot of mistakes made in a lot of different areas. The focus of what everybody was saying was: be accountable for your teammates. Hold up your end of the bargain. Get out there and bust trying to do your best for your teammates. And when you hold up your end of the bargain and you are accountable to everybody else on the team, things will fall into place."

HURRICANE UPDATE:
Several Lions players were affected by the developments in New Orleans, LA., involving Hurricane Katrina. Lions backup defensive back Jeff Sanchez and starting defensive end James Hall, both have homes and families in the affected area.

"My family left a couple days before the storm actually hit and as far as I know everybody's houses are under water," said Hall. "There are a lot people still there and it is a very unfortunate tragic situation, it's going to be a tough road ahead for the city to get back on track."

Hall also said he is moving his mother from the area to Michigan and told her to think about 'getting a Michigan driver's license" because it would be a long haul before she'd be able to go back home to Louisiana.

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