Were we duped into thinking this was going to be a consistent playoff team after they made the post season last year? I know I was. The only consistent thing about this team is the mind- boggling ways they find to lose games. Since the Lions started 5-0 last year, their record since is a measly 9-14. How many of those games did Matthew Stafford win at the last second, or in overtime? Seems like most of the Lions wins were in part because of Stafford’s amazing ability to remain cool under pressure when the game is on the line. That means the victories over San Diego last year and Jacksonville this year are the only games in which the Leos played sound football from start to finish since that awesome 5-0 start. Those numbers don’t speak well of the job that Head Coach Jim Schwartz is doing.
I think that Schwartz’s total brain fart on national TV was a crystallization of what is wrong with this franchise. He lost control of his emotions. Where have we heard that before? Not only when he chased down 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh like Harbaugh took his lunch money, but in the actions of the players in the last few years on and off the field. It feels like what Schwartz did on Thanksgiving is exhibit A of why the Lions are where they’re at today. Everybody is muttering under their breath, Same old Lions.
Everybody knows the teams takes on the personality of the Head Coach. Fittingly, the Lions are talented and flawed at the same time. They have some the best players in the NFL, yet they commit penalties at the worst possible moment. I think Schwartz knows that things have changed quickly in the “Not For Long” league. Last year he waited to sign his contract, thinking he had leverage after the Lions first Playoff appearance this century. Whatever cache he had is gone now, burned away by too many mental meltdowns. Remember how the Lions lost in Tennessee because the center, Dominic Raiola, didn’t know what the friggin play was? How does that happen at this level?
So here we are again. December is right around the corner and the Lions are out of the playoff race and playing for their jobs. They can’t be playing for respect, because they’ve already lost whatever respect the rest of the league had for them. Personally, I think no matter how bad the Lions finish this year, I think Schwartz should be back leading this team next year.
It would help if General Manager Martin Mayhew gives him players that Schwartz can use right away. Even though Riley Reiff, the Left Tackle of the future, was rushed into combat and did well, and Ryan Broyles is already starting to contribute, the Lions had huge needs on defense that weren’t addressed till later in the draft. It seemed to me that Mayhew was drafting for 2013 with the draft this year. That defense needs playmakers, not noisemakers like Ndumakong Suh.
Just to throw my two cents into the latest two step dance by Mr. Suh: yeah, he did it on purpose. He’s starting to become more trouble than he’s worth. His average contributions are being outweighed by his constant drawing attention to himself in bizarre ways. I have a feeling that Suh wants out of town and is going to let his contract expire. Maybe the Lions should investigate what they could get for him in the offseason.
So what is Mel Kiper saying about the safeties coming out this year??