The Detroit Lions are sinking in a miserable season, and Dan Campbell’s play calling hasn’t helped turn things around in the least bit.
The Detroit Lions are putrid on offense. Only the Houston Texans, Chicago Bears, and Seattle Seahawks are averaging fewer total yards a game than they are. If that isn’t bad enough, the Texans and Jacksonville Jaguars are the only teams averaging fewer points a game than the Lions. Yet, it’s hard to imagine there being a worse offense in the league.
We can all understand why Lions head coach Dan Campbell is concerned about the offense. Who wouldn’t be? The offensive line has been in flux all season due to injury, and has not fielded its starting lineup once this year. Nor will it. The running game has been fairly productive at times though.
The big problem is the passing game. Problem really isn’t a strong enough word. The passing game is a disaster. The receiving corps has lacked talent all season. The signing of Josh Reynolds has given Detroit a legitimate outside threat, but the quarterback situation can’t be fixed right now.
Jared Goff is public enemy No. 1 in the Motor City. His refusal to throw a pass further than three yards down the field (metaphorically speaking) is absurd.
Anthony Lynn was an easy fall guy for the offense’s failure. Campbell took over play-calling coming out of the bye, and this week he said he will keep those duties for the rest of the season.
Dan Campbell has shown he shouldn’t be calling plays
The only thing Campbell has shown as a play-caller is the Lions need a dynamic offensive coordinator. Over his three games calling plays, albeit with Tim Boyle starting one under center and D’Andre Swift missing half of Week 12, Detroit has averaged 13.3 points per game.
If Campbell doesn’t want Lynn calling plays, then he might as well make a change at offensive coordinator right now, or done it right away when he took over calling plays. It’s not like it’s going to hinder playoff hopes. But it’s also pretty clear there were no other real options to replace Lynn as the play caller, except maybe first-year quarterbacks coach Mark Brunell. So if Campbell wanted to change Lynn’s game day role, he had to take over as the play caller.
Campbell’s biggest strength is motivating his players. If he’s keeping Lynn around for the rest of the season, then let Lynn call the plays. The offensive coordinator situation can be figured out fully after the season.
It’s time for Campbell to cut the play-calling cord. All it’s doing is hurting the team, and himself. The Lions’ best chance to win a game isn’t with Campbell calling the plays, but it’s not looking likely to change.