Mikel Leshoure and the hippie lettuce


We have seen sad sack stories like this a hundred times over. Charles Rogers comes to mind, so does the current state of affairs with Ryan Leaf. Mikel Leshoure seems to be on the verge of throwing away his NFL career to smoke pot ala Ricky Williams. Two times over the past two months Leshoure has been arrested for smoking a little Mary Jane. This latest incident is pretty disturbing as apparently upon being pulled over smoking down Leshoure tried to eat the evidence leaving many green leaf crumbs on his mouth hand shirt. More disturbing is his decision to skip a scheduled court date that has led to an arrest warrant. Which in turn lead to the Detroit Lions front office getting involved and having a promise of Tuesday surrender.

By skipping today’s court proceedings Leshoure has exposed himself to possible further criminal charges and more punishment from the league. Based on past cases we can pretty well bet he is staring a four game suspension in the face for violating the league’s anti drug policies and skipping mandatory court proceedings may open him up to further punishment under Roger Goodell’s personal conduct policy. Whatever the case, regardless of his status returning from an Achilles injury, Leshoure is now sure to miss at least some of the 2012 season.

That leaves the Lions in the less than desirable position of having Kevin Smith and the oft injured Jahvid Best as their primary Running Backs to start the 2012 season. We have seen that play out before and it didn’t wind up so great. Which means the Lions could either trade for a RB, or use more draft picks to secure one that will not get injured and flake out.

Of course I am not saying the Lions should move on from Leshoure at this very moment. They already have a lot tied up in him. Let us not forget they traded up to get him in the draft last year. The Lions moved up 18 spots, gave up a fourth round pick (107th overall), moved down three spots in the fifth round to 157th overall, and moved back four spots in the 7th round to 209th overall. That may not sound like a lot but that fourth rounder could well have been a productive player. Sure Martin Mayhew does not seem to value late round picks but at some point in the Lions rebuilding effort those picks become important. My argument is on a roster full of top ten draft picks those picks become increasingly important each year.

Even with all of that said, Running Backs in today’s NFL are a dime a dozen. The Lions have traded up to take lots of them over the past 10 years or so and none of them have yet to prove their worth. Kevin Jones flamed out, Best is an unknown quality because of his concussion problems and one has to wonder now if Leshoure can get it back together and be productive on the field. We still do not know that yet.