DETROIT – Jim Caldwell's cool and calm demeanor was on display in what might've been his last game as coach of the Detroit Lions.
Caldwell chatted with each of his players as they stretched before the game, as he always does. And after it, he didn't seem to give anyone an indication his future with the franchise was in doubt.
Matthew Stafford threw three touchdown passes and Detroit beat the turnover-prone and short-handed Green Bay Packers 35-11 Sunday in a matchup of teams out of the playoff race.
The Lions (9-7) finished with a winning record in consecutive seasons for the first time since doing it three years in a row from 1993-95. That relative feat, along with a 36-28 record and two postseason appearances over four seasons in Detroit, may not be enough for Caldwell to keep his job.
“I'm not done yet,” Caldwell said with a slight grin.
Detroit linebacker Tahir Whitehead said Caldwell didn't look or sound like he was coaching him for the final time.
“He's the same guy, win, lose or draw. Same tone,” Whitehead said. “That's what you've got to love about him.”
The Packers (7-9) have a losing record for the first time since 2008, which is also the last time they didn't earn a spot in the playoffs. Their chances this season were crushed by Aaron Rodgers missing nine games with a collarbone injury,
Green Bay, without several banged-up players, gave away its chances to close with a win by turning it over three times in the first half to help the Lions lead 20-3 at halftime.
“The way we took care of the football today was unacceptable, and obviously had a big impact on the game,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said.