Detroit Lions loss on Sunday spells end for Mayhew era


Well that was embarrassing wasn’t it Detroit Lions fans? The Detroit Lions put on a despicable performance on Sunday, that included six turnovers, Matthew Stafford’s first benching, Ameer Abdullah’s first benching and a depressing scene at Ford Field that was reminiscent of the 0-16 Millen era. The Detroit Lions should leave nobody off the hook as this Detroit team just drew the straw that broke the camel’s back. Forget the camel’s back, that camel is lying dead in the middle of the road after getting hit by two 18 wheeler’s.

What does it all mean now that the game is finally over? Obviously the classic “fire everybody!” call is the first move by the Lions fan base and why shouldn’t be? As a guy who never likes to play the “fire that guy” game, this evening I find myself on the front line, pitch fork in hand. The Lions must make the necessary moves after this 0-5 start, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see it begin this week.

Feb 18, 2015; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Detroit Lions general manager Martin Mayhew speaks during a press conference during the 2015 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Martin Mayhew may be the first stone thrown in what could be a total house cleaning in the offices of Ford Field. While some can argue that Mayhew turned things around in Detroit, most can argue that he’s driven an even more talented team into the ground.

In Mayhew’s time in control, the franchise has compiled a record of 40-61 with two first round exits in the playoffs. As well as struggling to find a system to fit and protect his biggest investment in former first overall pick Matthew Stafford. Mayhew has repeatedly busted in the NFL Draft as well, most notably the 2012 draft of which no players remain from. Drafting guys like Levy, Stafford, Slay and Ansah can no longer hide his mistakes.

The most frustrating thing has to be the fact that Matthew Stafford has been with the Lions since 2009. How can any GM not know what works best for their quarterbacks succession after seven years? Not taking blame of Stafford’s shoulders, but how many Kevin Ogletree’s or Kris Durham’s did the Lions have to go through in order to find Golden Tate? and how could you not find a system that tailors to those strengths? The biggest question is why would the Lions front office continue to allow this to happen without remedying the situation?

Sep 3, 2015; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Miami Dolphins defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh (93) looks on before a game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Sun Life Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Of course the Suh debacle over the summer did the front office no favors other than allowing for a much better financial standing in the future. After months of unwarranted confidence that Suh would stay, Mayhew dropped the ball and underbid the Dolphins offer and Suh left. The Lions accidentally happened upon Haloti Ngata who is showing signs of age and decline in their response to the loss of Suh. Detroit likely finds themselves looking for two new starters along the interior defensive line this summer.

I’m not declaring this all to go down on Monday morning, I am however predicting the future as the Lions will likely excuse Mayhew and the coaching staff either during the season or on Black Monday. The good news for Lions fans is that despite the 0-5 start, this is a very talented team that could take big steps if the right captain is steering the ship. The right scheme and a successful offense could propel this team into the stratosphere.

42. 32. Final. 17. 50

This kind of thing cannot be seen anymore.

Mike Payton is an Editor at SideLion Report. He is from Holland, Michigan by way of Warren, Michigan. He considers himself to be obsessed with the Detroit Lions. Mike’s work has been featured on ESPN Radio, Fox Sports Radio, CBS Sports Radio and Mike is also a weekly contributor on It is what is with Sean Baligian on ESPN 96.1 and a contributor for The Holland Sentinel. Follow Mike Payton on Twitter@SLR_Mike

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