Lions Congregation: Louis Delmas, Defensive Rookie of the Year?


More than any other sport, football has become a form of religion. Weekly, we gather as a group to worship our favorite sport and team on Sundays. Here in the Lions Blogosphere, we like to worship our team in gathering in a different way.

Thanks to Joshua over at Roar of the Lions, SideLion Report has become part of what is called the Lions Congregation. Every week, he brings us bloggers the questions of you the readers.  It is exciting to be a part of a solid group of writers and fans who share equal passion for our football team!

This week’s question had to deal with the controversy that is Brian Cushing and the re-vote for defensive rookie of the year. One Fan writes in:

1. Brian Cushing won the DROY re-vote, but by a much closer margin. Jim a WMU Alum wants to know: Do you think Louis Delmas should have been in the discussion for DROY, and why?

Here is the Panel for this week’s question (To view everyone’s responses click here):

Al of The Wayne Fontes Experience
Phil Zaroo, Sports Editor at Mlive and Highlight Reel author
NetRat of The
Joe of the Side Lion Report
Blades Boyd formerly of the Church of Schwartz
Joshua (DetFan1979) of Roar of the Lions

I will make a point of expanding on my answer in the feature, but here is my take on the question:

"Without a doubt, Louis Delmas deserves to at least be in the discussion for the Rookie of the Year. When it comes to play-making ability, his talents match any of the other rookies that are up for the award. Jim Schwartz didn’t call him his best defensive player for nothing. For a rookie to come in and be the only dominate player in the secondary says a lot about a rookie’s abilities.The rookie of the year is about more than just tackles, interceptions and forced fumbles. When it comes to play making on the field, Delmas matches Brian Cushing, Clay Matthews III, Jarius Byrd and anyone else who deserves a vote. Especially when it comes to making plays on the field that are game changing."

Even though what I submitted sounds like I believe Delmas is hands down the best rookie in the league defensively, he was far from that. I just believe that he gets disrespected for being a lions defender.

Sure the defense was horrid, and that doesn’t give him bloated numbers. On the field though, he proved to be in the discussion of some of the best rookies out there week in and week out. I find it a bit odd.

Maybe a lot of it has to do with his position. Wait no that can’t be it… Bills safety Jairius Byrd got the second most amount of votes. He also snagged 9 interceptions. Of those, seven came in a stretch of four weeks. Two of them came off of rookie Mark Sanchez in his worst game of the season. Another two came off current Browns signal caller Jake Delhomme, who was nicknamed INT in 2010.

Besides that game in Carolina, Byrd never found separation after creating the turnover. He never had a return greater than 18 yards.

Do I need to mention he only made 45 tackles?

It’s hard to buy into the voting that took place, when it comes to factoring where Delmas fits in. I still believe that Brian Cushing deserved the vote, re-vote, electoral college and anything else needed to maintain the defensive rookie of the year award.

But I also believe that of all these rookies, Louis Delmas will be the most productive and valuable in the long haul.

Big Al, over at the Wayne Fontes Experience put it very well during the Congregation this week:

"Out of the players who received votes, Cushing, Buffalo safety Jairus Byrd. Green Bay linebacker Clay Matthews III, Washington linebacker Brian Orakpo, and St. Louis linebacker James Laurinaitis, I will say Delmas compares more than favorably. I wouldn’t bet against him having the best career, or at the very least, a comparable career."

Delmas is a good player, and it is frustrating not seeing him get the respect he deserves early in his career. Hopefully that will change. His reputation can only go up as the chances of the Lions being a good football team for once do.

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