After being ridiculed for his viral press conference last month, new Detroit Lions head coach Dan Campbell isn't backing away from how he's being perceived by critics.
"I said this to (special assistant to the owner) Chris (Spielman) the other day, I was like, 'I love the fact we're only known as meatheads," Campbell said, according to Kyle Meinke of MLive.com. "I like (that people think) that. I'm good with that, you know what I mean? I have zero problem with it."
Campbell vowed during his introductory press conference that the Lions would kick their opponents in the teeth and "bite a kneecap off."
Afterward, USA Today's Mike Freeman labeled Campbell a "football guy" and a "meathead." Freeman also criticized Detroit's hiring of Campbell due to the 44-year-old's relative lack of coaching credentials.
However, Campbell, who has 11 years of NFL coaching experience, said his message that day was only for a specific audience.
"That whole press conference was literally for our team and our fans and community and people that want the Lions to succeed," Campbell said. "I didn't care about outside voices."
Campbell, who played with the Lions for three seasons, said he believes he's a reflection of Detroit, and that he used the viral moment as a way to connect with frustrated Lions fans and the city overall.
"I want to be part of the solution. I want our fans to understand that I get it," Campbell said.
But regardless of his infamous comments, Campbell faces a significant task in turning the Lions around. The franchise finished 5-11 last season and hasn't posted a winning record since 2017.