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Jim Schwartz denies report of rift with Martin Mayhew

The Detroit Lions, like plenty of teams across the NFL, are dealing with plenty of pressure in Week 17. Players, coaches and administrators all are trying to make a final impression.

SI.com reported Thursday there has been "tension" between Lions coach Jim Schwartz and general manager Martin Mayhew, according to an anonymous source. Schwartz denied that Friday.

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"It couldn't be further from the truth," Schwartz repeated three times, according to the Detroit News. "I don't like to comment on rumors, particularly from people not in our building that don't see us every day, but that couldn't be further from the truth.

"We are all in this together, and we are all very determined to get us back on the right track."

SI.com's Don Banks quoted the source as saying the tension had arisen from "the Lions' penchant for taking chances on character-issue type players and the effect on the locker room."

"This whole 'there is a report that this, how do you respond to it,' it's just become a whole thing where we're responding to an anonymous source or a report that somebody said this or that," Schwartz said. "It's counter-productive to what we're trying to do.

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"Though I will say, it couldn't be further from the truth."

First off, we highly doubt Schwartz would admit any issues even if they were there. He's one of the more secretive coaches in the NFL. Second, true or not, things can't be all sunshine and lemon drops in Detroit. There were offseason arrests, a 4-11 record and a general lack of progress after last season's playoff appearance, the Lions' first since 1999.

This was Schwartz's fourth season and Mayhew's fourth full campaign after replacing Matt Millen as GM in the first month of the 2008 season.

Follow Kareem Copeland on Twitter @kareemcopeland.

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