A FOOTBALL PARTNERSHIP
On Friday’s “Shep, Shower, ‘N’ Shave,” host Matt Shepard (nicknamed “Shep”) had an interview with author Michael Lombardi (Episode 305, 01-04-19) – check out the first pages of Lombardi’s excellent book “Gridiron Genius” here.
The interview got to the heart of Lombardi’s thought process for building a championship team:
"“Football’s a partnership between the (general manager) and the head coach. And that has to be universal. And it has to be able to affect itself on the field with the type of players you’re drafting.”"
But that partnership doesn’t end with the drafting, as Lombardi continued:
"“Assessing talent is not that hard. Developing talent is harder. And I think that’s really how you have to judge a (general manager).”"
This has been the biggest problem with this franchise: development of talent. All the guys coming from the collegiate ranks are talented. The question is whether or not the team can develop and nurture that talent to its full potential.
The Detroit Lions hired Patricia to develop talent. And this season showed (at least defensively) that Quinn and Patricia could find the right guys and get the most out of them.
The offense was a different story – as it never got going this season, even when healthy. Shep asked about what should be done with quarterback Matthew Stafford, and this was Michael Lombardi’s response:
"“(The Detroit Lions) gotta get better players on their team. It starts with their offensive and defensive lines. And they gotta have a foundation of an offense, of what they can execute … We gotta be able to execute an offense that we can go and play. And take the burden of responsibility off Stafford and put it on the team. Not just one player.”"
This is the challenge that faces Quinn and Patricia. And I really don’t think that challenge involves securing “more weapons” for Matthew Stafford.