Detroit Lions Rebuild: Some Observations

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Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

The Lull Won’t Be Devastating

What’s the old cliché?  It gets worse before it gets better.  That wasn’t true in the last rebuild, but only because you can’t get worse than the 2008 Detroit Lions even if you tried, but it holds true in general.  At first, when the firings started, I mulled over what we’d be looking forward to in 2016 (the 2017 draft, mostly).  The more I thought about it, though, the less that seemed viable for this Detroit Lions team.

No, I’m not expecting them to be a super bowl contender in 2016 (though obviously I’d be happy if they were), but I’m not expecting a top 10 draft pick in 2017 either.  Unlike 2009, the team has a pretty solid core put together, especially on defense.  If the GM hire is good, and the coaching hires are even just solid, this team should be more contender than pretender in the first year of the rebuild.  It might only be a year later they’re pushing playoffs each season if this is done right.

Originally, I expected (hoped, in a way) for a Panthers type rebuild.  Move your poorer players, draft and develop talent over the course of years, sign younger FAs to push for playing time. The thing is, the team has already been doing that, and while they haven’t been supremely successful they weren’t completely wasted years either.  There are a lot of spots to fix, but there aren’t a lot of true holes on the team.  Well, aside from right tackle.  Right tackle is a dumpster fire.  Outside of that, though, this is a generally young team with a talented quarterback you can build around, skilled veterans who can pull their weight, and a culture that has already been pushing away from the losing culture of Detroit Lions past.  This isn’t a team built to succeed right away, but the 2016 Detroit Lions don’t look like a pushover either.  That’s something you can build on.

What are your thoughts, Detroit Lions fans?  Are you hopeful for the new rebuild?  Optimistic?  Pessimistic?  Let us know in the comments or get ahold of us on Twitter @SideLionReport or contact myself @MathBomb to let me know what you think of the team’s prospects moving forward!

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