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THE SPORTS GUY - Do I Gotta Write About the Lions?

As a lifelong sports geek, I still have yet to decide which is worse: doing my taxes, slamming my big toe into a door jamb in the dark, or watching our...ahh, excuse the term, professional football team. I am a huge football fan, but for whatever reason, or actually, for several of them, I can't hang with watching the Lions. I want them to do well, I hope that some season, they will do well. But deep down, along with about 168.5 million other people, I know they won't. So, with this less than enthusiastic preamble, what do I think we can expect out of the Lions this year?

The defense will suck. The secondary will continue to be an opposing quarterback's dream. The linebackers, perhaps the team's best unit on defense, won't know whether to gear up to stop the pass or the run, and they will fail at both. The defensive line? We may actually miss Shaun Rogers.

The offense will suck. The annual sure-fire roll of the dice to fix the offense with the first round pick player of the year is Gosder Whathisname, who may have concluded his assault-related community service time prior to the start of training camp. He is destined to be a bust. You know the saying - the only sure things in life are death, taxes, and a blown Matt Millen first round draft pick. The best running back may be a guy that they didn't think was good enough to play at all in the last 10 games last year. The best receiver is a guy that wants to be on the Dallas Cowboys. And Jon Kitna may be the Lions best player on offense. Yikes. We may actually miss Mike Martz.

The special teams will suck. OK, I say this, partially, to continue the theme. In truth, Jason Hansen is the best-kicker-to-never-have-a-chance-at-a-meaningful-kick in the NFL, and the punter (who's the punter now?) will be decent. The return game, punt coverage, and kick-off coverage, will however, still suck. We have already missed Desmond Howard - some reject off another team's roster will be the Lions primary punt and kick return "weapon".

The coaching will suck. Yes, it is appropriate to place most of the blame for the Lions continuing lack of success on bad players. But why are we trying to hold a Tampa Bay Buccaneers reunion in Detroit? Tampa won a Superbowl with a great defense, solid quarterback, ball-control running game and a good head coach. But that was Tampa, and it is a winning formula never achieved in Detroit. And last I checked, we didn't get Tampa's head coach, we got the defensive line coach. If we hire that far from the top, can't we at least hire the video coordinator from the New England Patriots, and while we're at it, get Tom Brady back to Michigan, where he belongs? I'll apologize to him for once thinking Drew Henson was a better quarterback. Hmm, Drew Henson, what sport is he trying a comeback in these days?

Matt Millen will suck. Just once, instead of providing one of his "no excuses" excuses after a lopsided loss, I would love to hear Matt Millen's post-debacle interview be a brief, yet inspiring statement of the truth - "I suck.", or better yet, just have him make a big sucking sound as his most accurate assessment of his tenure with the Lions. Oh, and another prediction about MM. He will of course be retained for the 2010 season, amid a promise to put more "Lions-type guys" on his team. We DO miss Chuck Schmidt, Joe Schmidt, Wayne Fontes, Wayne Walker, Jimmie Walker and any other general manager, coach, player or TV Land sit-com actor that we may have previously thought were incompetent until comparing them against our current standards. My, how absence makes the heart grow fonder....

Other Predictions...
  • A Lions player will get arrested for (insert offense - pun not intended, but irony noted).
  • A Lion player or coach will use his tightly spaced thumb and fore-finger in an interview gesture to show just how close the team is to going to a Super Bowl.
  • The above-interviewed Lions player or coach will go to the Super Bowl, provided their agent or bail bondsmen has enough pull to score them some tickets.
  • A Lion player we had not heard of prior to this season will get a huge early-season contract extension because he is "integral to where we are taking this franchise". He will celebrate his contract extension with his good friend, the Tiger's Dontrelle Willis.
  • If the Lions are lucky, they will be able to arrange a trade of the above-described player and lots of the Ford's dwindling cash-supply to another team for a sixth-round draft choice. Why? Because Matt Millen will state that "we see some quality Lions-type guys being available in the sixth round this year."
  • Record 3-14. The Lions will find a way to lose a game during one of their bye-weeks.

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The Lions - Respond if You Feel You Must!

The Sports Guy is not one to judge people. If you have nothing better to do than state your opinions on how the Lions will do this year, I won't respond back to you with the 1000 other things I think might have been a better use of your time. Better than that, if you want to tell me what you think, the LEAST I can do is post your response. Only in America, or on this particular subject, only in Detroit...
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