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Posted 13 Sep 2001   For week ended September 14, 2001
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Sent on Mormon-News: 12Sep01

By Kent Larsen

After 10 Years in Pros, Detmer Gets Big Break

DETROIT, MICHIGAN -- Ty Detmer, the former Heisman Award-winning quarterback got a new break in his 10-year-old NFL career Monday when Lions coach Marty Mornhinweg made him starting quarterback. Detmer was brought to the Lions just over a week ago to back up starter Charlie Batch, but when Batch struggeled through the first game of the season, a loss to the Green Bay Packers in which Batch was sacked seven times, gave up two interceptions and completed only about half his passes, Mornhinweg decided to go with Detmer.

"We've decided that in the best interest of the team, we are going to make a change at quarterback," Mornhinweg said Monday. "I've been evaluating Charlie since I got here, and after yesterday's play against Green Bay, I feel that we have our best chance of winning with Ty in the lineup." He blamed Batch's performance for the move, and said his experience with Detmer led him to take him. "The play from the quarterback position was unacceptable. I expected Charlie to play very well for us, but it has become clear to me that we need to go in another direction. I've coached Ty in two places, and I believe that he has a feel for the game that will help this offense. He has good accuracy, timing and decision-making, and those are all key factors in this offense."

Detmer didn't know about the change until after Monday's practice, and took only one snap during the 15-minute practice before it ended, "I jumped in the shower and I was ready to go home when they told me that Coach Mornhinweg wanted to see me," he said. "I didn't know what was up until he told me I was starting." Detmer said that even looking over the past two years its surprising, "This has been a crazy two years and a really crazy eight days. First, I missed the whole year last season when I could have been playing, and now I come here as a backup, and all of a sudden, I'm starting."

Detmer, 33, was first drafted by the Green Bay Packers in 1992 after winning the Heisman while at BYU. But in his four years with Green Bay, he threw just 21 passes. In 1996 he joined the Eagles, winning 7 games of 11 and leading the Eagles to the playoffs. But the next year he lost the starting job with the Eagles and in 1998 went to San Francisco, where he was a backup for now-retired LDS quarterback Steve Young.

Since then he has been with Cleveland as a backup, but missed last year with an Achilles' tendon injury. He was in that role when he was traded to the Lions in September 2nd.

But Monday Mornhinweg also indicated that Bach could win the job back from Detmer, "There is every chance that Charlie Batch will be back on the field as a Detroit Lion," Mornhinweg said. "Keep in mind that we once benched Jeff Garcia for three games in San Francisco, and he went to the Pro Bowl the very next season."


Detmer to replace Batch as Lions' starter
Sporting News 10Sep01 S2
Associated Press


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