Detroit Lions: Stop calling for Bob Quinn’s job
By Matt Bosko
Detroit Lions’ General Manager Bob Quinn is in his third year at the helm. With high hopes dashed by an early-season loss, is Quinn running out of time?
When the Detroit Lions tagged Bob Quinn as the team’s general manager in 2016, most fans celebrated the hire. It marked the beginning of a new era in the Motor City.
In his two-plus seasons with the Lions, the team has been on the cusp of success, finishing with a 9-7 record each year and one playoff berth. The team is a perennial contender, and Quinn’s no-nonsense approach has inspired confidence that he will do whatever it takes to build a consistent winner in Detroit.
Many fans praised Quinn’s dismissal of head coach Jim Caldwell. Even though the team went 9-7, they missed the playoffs, and Quinn made his mission statement very clear: good is just not good enough anymore.
The recent hire of Matt Patricia, his former colleague with the New England Patriots, was a long-awaited marriage. The Patriot Way was en route to Motown, with a slightly-above average team merely a bona fide leader away from being a legitimate contender.
It took only one embarrassing loss in the season opener against the New York Jets to turn the tide against Quinn.
Lions’ fans are angry. Every season they live and die with this franchise, mired in a combination of delusions of grandeur and fragile hopes. The frustration is easy to understand, even for the players, including wide receiver Golden Tate. Here’s what Tate told MLive.com.
"“Being here for five years and just knowing the history of the Detroit Lions, I definitely understand it. Our fans get so excited each year and have so much confidence in us that we’re going to win our division, go to the playoffs, win a playoff game, despite what history says. And we definitely appreciate that.”"
While the loss was inexcusable and the performance miserable, fans need to come to grips with a simple fact: Bob Quinn’s seat is ice-cold, his job supremely secure.
This may be Quinn’s third season with the Lions, but his contract essentially says otherwise. When Patricia was hired in February, the Lions gave him a five-year extension to match the length of new head coach’s deal. Quinn isn’t going anywhere, nor should fans want him out the door.
There is plenty of work left to turn the Lions into serious Super Bowl contenders. There are still glaring holes on the roster, as pass-rush continues to be a necessity. Patricia’s new defense will require new personnel in order to fully install his scheme. There are a lot of leftovers from Teryl Austin’s traditional 4-3 defense.
The reality is not every problem can be addressed in one or two off seasons, but Quinn has made progress. He is not finished, not by any measure. It’s difficult to ask for more patience from the Lions’ fan base, given the team’s long, tragic history, but patience is the only answer.
The lone alternative is to complain the entire way, hoping to be correct and mired in disdain instead of rooting for this team’s ascension atop the NFC North. Believe in the man. Let him build something great in Detroit. Bob Quinn’s going to be in town for awhile.