Dec 11, 2011; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions president Tom Lewand listens to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell (not pictured) before the game against the Minnesota Vikings at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-US PRESSWIRE

Detroit Lions intentionally avoid opportunity to sway public opinion

The Detroit Lions have reached an agreement with head coach Jim Schwartz on a multiyear extensionand it couldn’t have come at a better time. The Lions have had a rough offseason plagued with six different arrests and one player being dismissed from minicamp for sucker punching a teammate. However, Detroit should have done a better job at spinning the news of Schwartz’s contract extension.

Choosing to announce Schwartz’s extension at the end of the day on Friday and hiding the announcement in the weekend news cycle is a lost opportunity for Detroit.

Detroit could have used the positive news of Schwartz’s extension as a way to cover up, as much as possible, the amalgamation of unattractive news that has been coming out of Allen Park. This is a popular public relations technique that many teams use to sway the public opinion of a NFL franchise, should their perception be negative at the time, but the Lions decided to pass on the opportunity.

The normal operating procedure for Detroit’s front office is to stay mum on news, rumors, and announcements, and to only release the minimum required amount of information to the media and the public. There is no doubt that the Lions strategically announced the contract extensions as quietly as they could and it isn’t an accident that the news was released when it was.

It is understandable that Detroit cannot change the discern of every NFL fans’ opinion about the arrests of Nick Fairley, Mikel Leshoure, Johnny Culbreath, and Aaron Berry by releasing a minor nugget of information, but they could have used the news as an opportunity to put a Band-Aid on the team’s reputation and to put a foot forward in improving the team’s overall reputation as a prominent, professional football organization.

SideLion Report hopes that the Lions passed on this public relations opportunity in order to spend extra time working on Cliff Avril’s multiyear contract extension before it is too late and Avril is forced to play on a one-year franchise tender.

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