The Detroit Lions are going to end their playoff drought (since 2016) this year, and their first division title since 1993 can be locked up by beating the Minnesota Vikings on Christmas Eve.
In 1993, there were 28 teams in the NFL. The division the Lions won that year was called the NFC Central, and included the Tampa Bay Buccaneers with the four teams that currently make up the NFC North. It was Brett Favre's first full season as the Green Bay Packers' quarterback. The Houston Oilers still existed, as did the original iteration of the Cleveland Browns (with some guy named Bill Belichick as head coach). The Rams had not yet moved to St. Louis. The Arizona Cardinals were called the Phoenix Cardinals, their original name after the franchise moved from St. Louis.
That's all meant to show how long it has been since the Lions last won a division title, as if simply writing '1993' doesn't do it well enough.
But what did the Lions roster look like back in 1993? There some obvious names, like Barry Sanders and Herman Moore, but who else? What about the coaching staff? Any notable names under Wayne Fontes?
Let's dive a little bit into the 1993 Lions, starting with the coaching staff. They went 10-6, and lost a heartbreaker in the Wild Card Round to the Packers.
1993 Detroit Lions coaching staff
Head coach: Wayne Fontes
Co-Offensive Coordinators: Dan Henning and Dave Levy (Levy was also Assistant Head Coach)
Defensive Coordinator: Hank Bullough
Special Teams: Frank Gansz
Running Backs: Billie Matthews
Wide Receivers: Charlie Sanders
Offensive line: Jerry Wampfler
Offensive assistant: Dave Jaumotte
Defensive line: Lamar Leachman
Inside linebackers: Herb Paterra
Outside linebackers: Don Clemons
Defensive backs: John Fontes
Fontes is of course the winningest head coach in Lions history. He led the team to the playoffs four times in a five-season span from 1991-1995.
Henning was between head coaching stints (San Diego Chargers and Boston College) in his two years as Lions' offensive coordinator (1992 and 1993). Charlie Sanders had a Hall of Fame playing career as a tight end for the Lions, and he coached the team's wide receivers from 1989-1996.