Monday, September 19, 2016

The bumbling Lions

I didn't watch the game. I mean, c'mon. What sane person would waste 3-4 hours of their time to check out the Detroit Lions playing the Tennessee Titans? With all the channels these days, surely there must have been something else on to get one's sports junkie fix.

A race. Baseball. Golf. One legged beach volleyball. Munchkin rugby. Skeet shooting for the blind. SOMETHING!!  Anything but Lions and Titans. Horrors!

But I did read and hear about it afterwards.

Somewhat surprisingly, the Lions had beaten the Indy Colts on the road the week before. Up, up, up went the Honolulu blue and silver koolaiders. Then the Lions, being the Lions, went home and stunk it up against the Titans. Thud. This is nothing new. It's been going on for sixty years, but the Motowners (and their fans) just can't seem to figure it out.

Detroit was called for 19 -- count em -- NINETEEN penalties? Really? It would appear that team can't grasp the most basic of concepts. On offense, there is absolutely no excuse for false starts. The players heard the snap count in the huddle and they can't remember it for the 10-15 seconds it takes before a normal play starts? On defense, offside is the same way. Thou shalt not move across the line of scrimmage until the ball is snapped. Pretty simple.

Head coach Jim Caldwell says these are things that can be cured. To which I say -- not so fast. If his players are so dense to as not understand the infractions mentioned in the above paragraph, well, as they say -- there just ain't no fixing stupid.

Let's face it. The Lions are a garbage team, in a garbage town, and have had clueless ownership since the JFK administration. (The very end of it, at least. William Clay Ford sealed the deal to become owner of the Lions on the very same day -- Nov. 22, 1963 -- that John F. Kennedy was, shall we say, losing his head in Dallas. How's THAT for a bad omen?)

Some of their hires, including the front office and a myriad of coaches, have been colossally bone-headed. It took them a mind-boggling 8 years to figure out Matt Millen was incompetent. Just recently the owning Ford family brought on their "estate planner" to be President of the team. A man who freely admits he knows nothing about football. Say what??

Not long ago they tolerated one Jim Schwartz for a few years as head coach. A notorious hothead, Schwartz may or may not have what it takes to be a decent coordinator. But head coach was obviously way over his head. The Peter Principle doesn't lie, current US Presidential nominees notwithstanding. Ahem.

And now it's Jim Caldwell. A similar scenario. JC was an OK right hand man working under other successful head coaches, but a flop when it came to running the show. Hark back to when he was hired just a couple years ago. Lots of teams had head coach openings. And all of them were filled by guys not named Jim Caldwell before the Lions finally got around to replacing Schwartz. There are reasons other teams passed on him. Namely, they wanted somebody who could win in the long run. Ever politically correct, JC says all the right things to keep the suckers in line, but the Lions will never be Super Bowl contenders with him at the helm. Forget that.

It should be noted that, given the "good old boy" coaching carousel in the NFL where the same guys have a long history of getting hired, fired, and rehired by somebody else, no former head coach of the Lions has ever, EVER been offered the job by another team. Detroit is where head coaches come to die. Of course they make millions while there, so they don't really need another job afterwards. But nothing much seems to change for the Lions. Different guy, different players, pretty much the same result. Over and over and over again.

So now here it is 2016 and the Lions are predictably right where they should be. Beat a mediocre team then lose to a bad one.

It's just another year. No doubt, during the season the Lions will chalk up a few highlights. But in the end, does anybody really think they have the proverbial snowball's chance of getting anywhere near the Super Bowl? This year or any one soon? Puh--leeze. And isn't that what it's all about?

Naturally, the Lions will also put up their fair share of lowlights as well. In the game against the Titans, quarterback Matthew Stafford made the "c'mon man" reels not just once, but twice. Watching him try to lumber down the field is bad enough, but when he got rolled up backwards by running into a much bigger defender was comical. Almost as funny as Mark Sanchez' infamous "butt fumble". On another occasion when he was attempting to run for some yardage, the Georgia Peach had the wisdom to slide before contact. Sort of. As it turned out, Stafford's "slide" looked somewhat akin to a barefoot water skier letting go of the rope. There's just no graceful way to go down. Luckily for the Lions, MS didn't hurt himself on the play. But it still looked Keystone Koppish. COME ON, MAN!!

There's a reason yours truly gave up on the Lions so many years ago. Actually several. They weren't any good. They were never any good. And they ain't never gonna BE any good.

So as I said at the start, I didn't watch the game. All I need to know is the Lions lost, again, committed WAY too many stupid penalties throughout, and their QB made the blooper reels a couple times.

Yup. It's the same old Lions. God bless em, their fans and ever faithful media, but no thanks to wasting time watching them.

Bring on the munchkin rugby. Wouldn't that be a hoot?

1 comment:

  1. Correction: They were great in the 1950s.