Spielman and Sanders are the latest Lions PR stunt

It’s not often that the Detroit Lions win football games. That’s why this is one of the worse franchises in professional sports. It is why Matt Patricia was fired as coach and Bob Quinn as general manager.

It is why Matt Millen received a contract extension after a terrible five year run that morphed into eight years. It is why a smattering of Lions fans walk around town calling themselves “Lions free.”

The Lions did not win a game when they announced that former linebacker Chris Spielman was hired as a special assistant to president Rod Wood and owner Sheila Ford Hamp. They were running a game on gullible fans who continue to fall for every trick and party game the organization hands them. And they added to the public relations game they brought in Hall of Fame running back Barry Sanders to help with the GM and coaching search.

You guys are Charlie Brown who keeps having the football pulled from him by Lucy.

“I really do think that this is the absolute right time to get involved,” Spielman said. “I’m really excited. I can’t tell you how excited I am about the opportunity. The Lions are part of my identity; they always have been, they always will be.”

Is it a coincidence that the Lions are parading the two most popular players in Lions history to save the day? No. Fans love Spielman and Sanders. Spielman is unqualified to be GM, but the Lions would still get universal applause if they slid him into that spot. They know Spielman is not suited for that job. Spielman knows that also.

So essentially the club hired him as a high priced intern with no power. Ford-Hamp and Wood still make final decisions and can veto any names Spielman and Sanders brings to them.

At least Spielman brings passion and grit to the job. If he is rejected, he’d tell the Fords and Wood to go stick it, although he will put forth a united public front should his suggestions get shit canned.

Poor Barry is a pawn. He is the washed up casino greeter who makes everybody feel better about blowing their money at the giant crap table known as Ford Field. They could tell Barry that Count Dracula should be the next coach and he’d rubber stamp it.

I applaud the Lions for finally reaching out to former players who care about this franchise. I’m not sure if they got the right ones. And they are afraid to put one of these former players in real administrative roles.

Teammates begged Sanders to march to the front office as a player and help management. He refused. All he wanted to do was play and earn a paycheck. He liked the Wayne Fontes popsicle breaks and kid glove treatment and rebelled when Bobby Ross brought the hammer down on players.

Spielman is in no position to change the Lions culture unless they are placing him in daily meetings. Besides, Spielman was a self motivator as a player, not a motivator of teammates.

The good new is having Spielman and Sanders on board could make the Lions a better organization. Maybe. However, this isn’t the slam dunk move everybody believes it is.

It is based on the concept of fool’s gold. And we are the fools for buying it.

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Published by terryfoster8

I am a 58 year old retired sports journalist, husband and father of two living outside of Detroit in search of his next big adventure in life.

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