Is the criticism of the Detroit Lions fair?


Let us forget that some chicken **** rival NFL General Manger decided to rip the Detroit Lions anonymously. Let us forget for a second that calling a 1-3 team overrated is a low blow and let’s forget that had this not been a bye week for the Detroit Lions this wouldn’t even be a story. Instead let’s focus on what was actually said.

Sep 30, 2012; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions saftey Ricardo Silva (39) celebrates after tackling Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Jerome Simpson (81) during the fourth quarter at Ford Field. Vikings defeat the Lions 20-13. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-US PRESSWIRE

"They are a one-dimensional offensive team that if the quarterback is not on, people are figuring it out."

Yes, that is true. However, over the last two games the Detroit Lions have made a committed effort to run the ball more with Mikel Leshoure. They point out on their website that the criticism is unfair because of the absence of RB Jahvid Best. I say the Lions offense is an offense without an identity and that Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan has so far done a very poor job using all of his weapons consistently or even correctly. Let us also not forget Mathew Stafford is still a relatively young QB, and this team is still growing and gelling together. Let’s see what this offense looks like with everyone healthy, and with a solid game plan. I don’t think we have seen that a lot over the past couple of years, and when we have they have looked quite impressive. Granted there are no excuses in pro football.

"They are not a team that I think is ready. If I am going there to take over the job, I am not thinking that is a quick fix"

This one is pretty right on. What NFL team is a quick fix? We see teams go to the Super Bowl one year and not make the playoff the next. In fact what is a successful team anyways? Let us not forget this is a team that went to the playoffs last year, after going 0-16 not that long ago. They did not do a great job upgrading the talent level of the roster this last off season and that is certainly an issue, however they are closer than this anonymous GM thinks they are, and not as close as  Lions fans would like. However, that can change in a very short amount of time. This is the NFL there is always tomorrow.

"Martin Mayhew and Jim Schwartz are over rated"

I think we are seeing the NFL Head Coaching job being a little big for Jim Schwartz. Maybe he is just too laid back to manage a NFL roster. He has a lot of fire on the field, but his players have a sense of entitlement that must come from him and his staff. That has caused problems on and off the field for this team. I would say that Schwartz still has a lot to prove much like the other 31 men who are head coaches at this level.

As for Mayhew who inherited a roster that went 0-16 and set out to improve it. Sure, he has made a lot of questionable decisions along the way. The  most important one being  his failure to rebuild the defensive secondary with high round draft picks. Using the pick gained in the Roy Williams trade on a Tight End, and the repeated use of middle round pick on offensive players. Those are all issues, but overall Mayhew has done a very good job. In 2008 this team went winless, so even at 1-3 they are doing better than when he got the job. He is the ultimate answer? Who knows but after a decade of mismanagement this team has gotten a lot better in a very short amount of time.

In the end the Lions are a disappointing 1-3. When DJC looked at the 2012 schedule we had hoped that the lions would be at least 2-2 if not 3-1 at this point. Two more tough road games await this team, and hopefully the bye week was used to make the adjustments that obviously need to be made. We shall see, and let us not forget that there are a lot of home games left and this season is anything but over.

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