Lions kick the can down the road for a proper rebuild

Maybe, just maybe, the Detroit Lions are a real organization. That was my initial thought after they shipped quarterback Matthew Stafford to the Los Angeles Rams for quarterback Jared Goff, two future first-round draft picks and a 2021 third round pick.

What the Lions are doing is kicking the can down the road, hoping they build this the right way — finally. It is the right move in my mind. It might prove to be frustrating for Lions fans who are tired of rebuilds, tired of hearing about the future and tired of watching their team get thrashed just about every Sunday.

Frustrating and teeth gnashing days remain if you love this team. The question is do you believe in Brad Holmes as a general manager? Do you believe the fire and brimstone approach of head coach Dan Campbell will resonate in this dressing room?

Do you believe in Sheila Ford Hamp?

If you answer no, that is understandable.

The Lions are rebuilding again. We’ve all heard the Lions alternative slogan “rebuilding since 1957.” That’s actually not true. A more accurate slogan might be “regressing since 2000.”

That’s when Chicago Bears kicker Paul Edinger kicked that franchise crushing 54-yard field goal that booted the Lions from the playoffs and brought in Matt Millen as GM and president.

Since that Edinger boot the Lions are 110-209-1 (.345 win percentage). So now we are pleading you to go through another rebuild. That’s really unfair, but it is necessary.

Do you remember how 9-7 was not good enough? Well, the Lions have only reached that water mark four times in the last 20 years — twice under Jim Caldwell. In the same time frame the Lions have lost nine or more games 16 times, which included all three years of the failed Matt Patricia-Bob Quinn experiment.

Same ‘Ol Lions is no longer a catch phrase. It’s a way of life.

The true test of the new regime is how they rebuild under new thinking and a new approach. Do they build this house on solid footing or do they build the condo on a fault line as previous thought managers have done so many times before?

Unfortunately, we may not know until 2023 when we’ve had time to evaluate Goff and the young draft picks the Lions select. By then the Lions can decide if Goff is the answer or if they’d rather ship him some place else for more draft choices.

By trading for Goff the Lions are saying they do not want the train sliding completely off the tracks. They want to provide entertaining and competitive football and are tired of four and five-win seasons.

Guess what? The Lions could still use their number seven pick this spring to draft a quarterback. Instead of having a rookie shitting his pants and firing balls into the 25th row, they can develop a quarterback the old fashioned way. Bring in the young gun, give him a clip board, and have him learn. That’s the way the NFL used to do it.

It worked for Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay. It can work in Detroit.

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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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