Updated: Dec 5, 2019
We saw this coming
I knew I would write something about the Detroit Lions this season. I did not know when..or what kind of piece. Then again I am being disingenuous here. I knew what sort of piece it would be all along. Another lost season. I knew this when they blew their first game against the Arizona Cardinals...with a rookie quarterback and a first year coach. Oh, the Lions did their usual tease, with a win on the road against the Eagles, followed by a win at home against the Chargers. They played the Chiefs and Packers close. I knew, however, that this team was doomed.
The Detroit Lions have played on Thanksgiving since 1934. A holiday tradition in that area. In my lifetime they have won 25 out of 60...or 42pct. That equates to a 6-10 regular season winning percentage. If nothing else, the Lions are consistent. So when they were up 17-10 on the Bears at halftime, I was skeptical, with good reason. So were the announcers Aikman and Buck. I think they were just glad it wasn't a usual Bears-Lions game and a 6-3 score. Some guy named Blough started at QB for the Lions. Hmm. The Saints have a backup named Bridgewater...the Titans have Tannehill...the Colts have Brissett....the Lions have...Blough. So what happens after halftime?...the Lions are outscored 14-3. They made Mitch Trubisky look like Dan Marino.
Send in the clowns
Detroit Lions, Cleveland Browns, Jacksonville Jaguars, Houston Texans. What do these four teams have in common? None have been to the Super Bowl. The comparisons really then end there. The Lions have been in the league for 89 years. The Jaguars 24 years. The Texans 17 years. The Carolina Panthers have been to two Super Bowls....in 24 years. Not grim enough for you? I was born during the Eisenhower administration and this team has won one playoff game....in my lifetime...out of thirteen appearances. Who does that? Teams have risen..fallen...risen again...and the Lions have been mired in mediocrity at best...or abject crap at worst. In the last six years the San Francisco Forty Niners have been to a Super Bowl... then finished 2-14....and are now 9-1 this season...and the Lions have been...the Lions.
They are who we thought they were
So why is this team consistently crappy you ask? Three reasons: Ownership, management, players. That about sums it up. The Ford family has owned the Lions my entire lifetime and although they have spent money at times for talent on the field, they are unable to hire management that knows what the hell they are doing. Matt Millen anyone? Marty Morningwheg? There have been 18 head coaches in my lifetime...roughly one every 3.5 years. The winningest coach is a guy named Wayne Fontes. You never heard of him? Of course not! Why would you? This team has been irrelevant...since the 1950's. Now they have a guy named Bob Quinn as General Manager, supposedly a former Patriots whiz, and what have they got out of him? Hiring Defensive guru/Grizzly Adams doppelgänger Matt Patricia? The Lions have one of the worst defenses in the league! Also, for years, Lions fans whined they need a franchise quarterback...then they supposedly got one in Matt Stafford. So he wins a lot of games, throws for a lot of yards..and has not won a playoff game. What quarterbacks have won playoff games in Staffords tenure? Tim Tebow (out of the league)...Matt Schaub (benched)...Blake Bortles (benched)...Marcus Mariota (benched). I could go on. Stafford is not going to get this team to the Super Bowl. So the Lions have a quarterback...sort of...but now have not had a running back for years. They once had one of the best running backs in the history of the NFL (Barry Sanders) and just won a single playoff game. So Sanders did what all Lion greats do, retire early before they get killed by this dingbat organization. Like Calvin Johnson.
There's always 2020....right?
So the Lions are 3-8-1, have lost five in a row, eight of their last nine games, and are out of the playoff picture, and it is not even December yet. What a disaster. Actually they were never going to make the playoffs this year and we knew this in September. Abandon hope, all ye who enter here.