Was the Chris Spielman hiring a ‘win’ for the Detroit Lions?
By Robert Jones
Can Chris Spielman help turn around the long-lost Detroit Lions?
Detroit Lions‘ owner Sheila Ford Hamp seems to be determined to make the fans of the Honolulu Blue and Silver believe she will turn this franchise into a winner. In an effort to accomplish this lofty goal she reached into the team’s past to try to build a better tomorrow.
It is no secret that the Lions have been one of the NFL’s laughing stocks since they last won it all back in 1957. But that hasn’t stopped these Motor City cats from suiting up some players that the rest of the league had no choice but to take notice of.
Consider the legacy of the number 20. Starting with Hall of Fame cornerback Lem Barney who starred with the Lions from 1967-1977. In 1980 Detroit used the first pick in the draft to select former University of Oklahoma Heisman Trophy winner, running back Billy Sims.
In Sims’ all too brief career from 1980-1984 when his playing days were ended by a knee injury, he was one of the best runners in the game. He was also an outstanding receiver out of the backfield and it seems a foregone conclusion he would have joined Lem Barney in Canton had he never been hurt.
Then of course there was the final player to wear the number 20; Barry Sanders. There aren’t enough superlatives to describe how good a runner he was. Unquestionably one of the best runners ever, if not possibly the best.
But there have been other players that have suffered the slings and arrows of Lions losses that were among the best in the league. Perhaps one of the most beloved locally, but maybe overlooked nationally was an undersized, incredibly smart, and focused linebacker out of Ohio State; Chris Spielman.
While not the most gifted athlete the NFL has ever seen, he was the epitome of preparedness who out fought and out thought opponents from the opening kick-off to the final whistle. Now he will lend his experience and insight to the Detroit Lions’ quest to become winners.