Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Instant Introspections

Long day (catching up) so just a few random thoughts/comments/introspections

In regards to the Mythbusting piece -- I said the Lions were changing -- good or bad is yet to be seen, and the overall tone of the piece was meant to inspire a look for a different angle. We often are trapped in our own straight line logical thinking path, that we find it hard to veer off and try to approach an issue, or an event form an angle different than that which comes to us first. In that piece, I overlaid a sense of the incomplete -- and in the laboring. Matt Millen is still GM, so although the Coach, and attitudes, and approach are being altered -- in the end, Matt Millen and WCF are still the power behind the throne -- the final decision makers. The ending I put forth was one of anticipation -- your own character will determine whether it is anticipation of dread, or success, or of sheer surprise. I, personally, am up for sheer surprise this year. I do not know what the team will do -- and neither, I suspect, do they in a very real sense. There is potential for both the astounding, and the mundane; the pinnacle and the gutter. All I know is that the chances of either end of the spectrum (1st pick in the draft, SB Winner) are quite remote -- and that the Lions are going to fall somewhere in-between. Where is anybodies guess, including my own. But I am just going to sit back once the season starts, and enjoy the ride for what it is -- after all, what is a destination but the end of a journey?

As for Mr. Jones signing with the Bears. BigKahuna (aka my boss) was not too thrilled with it, but the Bears really needed a veteran back with potential for a host of reasons that make it a logical landing place for a host of reasons.

1. Cedric Benson was an even bigger bust, and his release meant that Forte, a 2nd round draft pick rookie is the de-facto starter.
2. Forte's backups are the "other" Adrian Peterson (who really is nothing more than a 3rd down back) and Garret Wolfe, who is about on par with Calhoun for what he's shown so far -- minus the injuries even.
3. They needed a value pick veteran due to how late in the ifseason they ditched Benson. They are run heavy, and HAD to have another back that could at least rotate in, and at least start for a few games if Forte struggles or is hurt.
4. KJ signed there because his time in the division he is familiar with their style of play, revenge factor, and they were willing, I would bet, to give him two things essential to his situation:
A. Playing Time
B. Some incentives in his contract over veteran minimum that he has a chance to earn

I stand by my earlier assessments of Kevin Jones in the these Two Pieces I wrote earlier on this Blog. Kevin Jones is a $1 Ninja, and the Bears have signed him to an appropriate contract befitting that status. Had the Lions kept him, he would have continued to fall into the $30 used Buzz category -- too much risk for the return. (and he doesn't even look exciting coming out of the box anymore)

On Brett Favre, I was not meaning disrespect to him by posting that story -- but statistically and physically he is an average QB. It was his "intangibles" that were both his greatness and his weakness. In that way, he and Kitna are very much alike. I'm not saying Kitna is a HOF QB... but his intangibles -- toughness, leadership -- do add to the entire team's success more than some additional athletic ability ever could. Plenty of athletes have bombed at the QB position, as have personalities. Success at QB in the NFL is the perfect blend of situation, style, ability, and personality -- which is why it is so rare when the truly great ones do come along and the stars align. The Lions are not that team for Kitna -- I doubt he will take them to a Superbowl because even if they do show this year that the jump from 3 wins to 7 was improvement and not a fluke -- he will not be around by the time they are built for a Superbowl run -- that distinction will likely fall on the next Lions QB. That being said, I do think that he will take them to the playoffs -- and in 09 may even win a playoff game for them.

Buy a lot of those are IF's.

BTW -- Absolutely ALL comments indicating KJ is going to come and "Pinner" the Lions WILL BE DELETED. To say he will run for 200 yards against the Lions just because he is an ex-player is something even the hardest-core Bears fans don't see happening. I'm sure you can think of the rest of my objections to that kind of crap without me even bothering to go into detail that is unwarranted here. If he does great elsewhere, I'm fine with that. But his running for a lot of yards would be more about mistakes the Lions have made in their DEFENSIVE decisions than those regarding players on the offense -- including cutting Jones.


ClusterFox said...

Gotta admit I'd rather see him go to the Steelers, so I could enjoy his possible successes from a distance.

I made the mistake of visiting mlive. Wow, by viewing the comments I wonder how some of these people get thru the day without blowing major blood vessels in their foreheads. The important fact that I think few realise or accept is, If the lions had I chance to have KJ on the roster for 600,000, They probably would have.

As you hinted to, only one team wins it all and only one gets the first pick, everyone else falls in the middle. So if everyone would just admit it, all we truely desire is a team that competes on the field , and still manages to be to be respectable off. For example it could be argued that Cinci is a more talented team than us, yet I'd be more ashamed to be a bengels fan due to the fact that there character is so questionable.

Lastly, Why/how do the Lions breed so many haters(that still call themselves fans)? No I don't need a history lesson, The wings were in the same boat 10-15 years ago. I'm just really confused because in todays age its OK to be a Packers fan in the UP, or a Steelers or Cowboys fan anywhere, so why continue to be a Lions hater? I guess in the nicest way possible I'm saying go away for awhile, we'll welcome you back when the bandwagon starts filling up, there's no hard feeling but as I tell my kids my ears are starting to hurt. I hope everyone has a great day, and can enjoy being a Lion's fan even if were just one of the 30 teams that fall in the middle.

Can said...


Blowing major blood vessels in their foreheads..hilarious.

The Steelers don't need Jones, they are going to showcase Mendenhall..I'm jealous. Make no mistake though, the Steelers have one tough schedule and they will desperately need him.

The gig was up between Jones and the Lions the day the Lions gave Kevin Smith the #34 jersey.

I'm curious who started the Lions hater thing..it sounds so childish.
This isn't an attack against you clusterfox but I hear this all the time

I don't care for the Packers and the Cowboys but never in a million years would I ever go into their forums and bash them - that would be a hater.

Many fans that complain on blogs are disgusted about the Lions progress, but I think they are just as true of a fan as you and I.

Hater, Can ;)

CHIEFGER139 said...

throw out our blogs
as they say on m-live thats communisim,also comparing kitna and farve at any level is absurb, the only thing they have in common is they both can take a beating and stay in the game, the simularities stop there-i could go on and on all day how much better farve is better than kitna in everyway possible but wont cause i dont care for farve-thats why i bit my tongue and didnt jump on you yesterday. canoppener on that jones hiring blog on m-live it did seem like there were a ton of haters that suddenly popped up-i think some must of been fans of other teams the way they went on and on-i stayed out of that blog entirely. probably why detfan79 put his btw statement on this article.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Chief on this one. Deleting comments seems over the top just for displaying an opinion. I can get why you're doing it though. I think if fans are going to say that Jones will come back to beat us they ought to be able to come up with some logical justification as to why he will do so. For me, I think Jones will probably have a 700-900 yard season depending on his time as a starter. He'll probably have some decent games against us but probably not much more than a 100 yard performance (if that).

As for Favre and Kitna. I get where you're going with the intangibles thing, but there really isn't much of a connection. Kitna is a journeyman QB who is just barely able to retain a starting role, Favre is a HOF QB who has a SB to his name and is well-respected throughout the league. I don't think he's at the godlike status that many attribute him to be, but he's still lightyears ahead of Kitna.

Lastly, regarding the Lions' lack of offseason moves. I agree, there wasn't nearly as much movement as I would have liked, but keep in mind that there wasn't much room under the cap to do a whole lot of signing or trading.

We'll see improvement this year because the T2 will be much more well-known to the players, but next year and the year after I think they'll be able to address their needs much more effectively in the offseason. That's when we'll see whether the Lions will actually be pushed over the top or not.


DetFan1979 said...

Just so you guys know, I've still not had to delete any posts. Just reminding, as you guys caught on, that this site is for constructive analysis not 100's of posts repetitivly spouting off silly doom.

If you say "KJ will run for 200 yards because I think the Dline tandem of Darby and Fluellen is not going to plug the gap in the middle vacated by Rogers, coupled with a revenge factor motivating him and Chicago keeping it a low scoring affair and wanting to burn out the clock will focus on the run, rather than put the game on the shoulders of Grossman/Orton. Sucks that it will be KJ doing it. Forte will likely do the same -- it's the D not just the runner." -- that is a constructive comment -- can't say the same thought hasn't crossed all our minds, although I don't think it will happen.

you guys know I'm not an irrational nazi about the comments.

In regards to Kitna and Favre, I wasn't meaning to imply they are on the same level -- far from it. As I said, Favre could take a team on his back and win the game, which is something I don't think Kitna can do.

More, the point I was trying to make is that they are similar type of players in that the "intangible" part of their game is as, or more important than, the tangible athelticism they posess.

Kitna is not Favre by any means, and I was looking at similarites in their style of play and what they bring to a team in that sense, not the level at which they execute it. Their style only is similar -- and you are correct Chief when you say the similarties stop there.

I know why the Lions made the Ifseason moves that they did, and was merely stating how I approach every season -- hoping we are the one who wins, hoping we aren't the one who picks first, and knowing most likely we'll be somewhere in the middle. I like to enjoy each game as a single game when I'm watching it, and then look at the broader picture later.

I liked their ifseason moves, and thought they did the best they could with what they had. I think they've improved, and am itching for the games to start so I can see them in action.

Next ifseason should be a good one -- with the cap cleaned up, and the roster purges completed, they will have a lot more flexibility, and a lot fewer gaping holes.

If KJ gets 700 - 900 yards, it will be because Forte is struggling and Jones gets more carries. But I can also see it happening. KJ at vet min plus incentives is a good risk for the Bears to be taking and I applaud them for it.

Keep up the great comments all!

Nice to know I can always come "home" and get clear views, and constructive thoughts (whether I agree with them or not) without having to cover my ears.

Keep up the great job guys, and keep 'em coming.

BTW Chief -- I didn't write the article on Favre, see the comments for sources. Just thought it was interesting -- and proved a point I agreed with (although the author missed it entirely): Favre was/is a better player than the sum of his statistics. Kitna is as well (again, not comparing them on equal fields, but the concept -- Kitna has done more for the teams he is on than his stats indicate - his actiosn as a mentor for young QB's (such as Palmer) and steadiness have helped solidify the QB situation for the rebuilding teams he is on. Then he mentors the "franchise" QB, or is replaced by him when they improve because he is a steady leader -- not an exceptional HOF'er.)

I do think if you put Kitna on the right team, he could be a SB QB. After all, the Bears D came close to making Grossman the next Trent Dilfer so anything can happen.

Can said...

chief and detfan

I really like Kitna. I think he out-shines the rest of our team by a mile. How can a quarterback pass the football when he is flat on his back.

Now that Kitna will be able to audible should help him out a great deal. I really wish they would have taken a 1st round running back instead of gambling with the running back situation...I'm not sold on any of our current running backs...Kevin Jones is better than any one of these guys and you know how I feel about Kevin Jones running into the pile of defenders time and time again.

Admit it! our game was better with Kevin Jones and Shuan Rogers in the game. When one of them went out of the game there was a serious lack of production for the most part at their position.

Please don't come back with the "well Shuan Rogers only played well when he wanted to" because I would be sick of playing for a coach that just gave a guy a huge contract, from the same school I came out of, and did very little to help out the team. If I was Shuan I would be pissed also..where was his help and to think your head coach is a former defensive line coach...I have serious doubts about our coach...but to each his own.

If Kevin Jones doesn't re-injure himself, he will be a tremendous addition to the Bears roster.

Now let me make a comment about Brett Fav-re, he's a dirty rotten scum sucking, cheese eating, Lion whipping PRICK! I still remember in one of his first seasons taking the Lions out of the playoffs with his down the sideline pass to Sterling Sharpe. He was so lucky, he was good, but he sure had luck on his side. The packers are so much better managed than the Lions, there is no comparison. When Fav-re left Atlanta and headed to the frozen tundra he had no idea he was headed to the HOF. I wish him well and I'm glad he retired but, the packers still have better coach and team than the Lions do..don't ever look past the Packers...yet alone Vikings or Bears. WE are SQAUT..ZERO..NADA.

Who do we scare?..don't make me laugh.

Do you think this is the year?..I'm laughing even harder.

I sure hope we win a few games this year...and as Forest Gump would say..and thats about all I can say about that.

Can ;)

CHIEFGER139 said...

can man
kitna's ok-and by far the best we have right now-we dont know how effective he will be at audibles or the 3 step drops,thats part of the if's
as far as the lions immtimidating anyone, i would bet every team we play including its fans figures they will beat detroit, but the differnce this year is i think the lions actually think there good and can compete with anyone, and they should
i think playing the giants as close as they did and the giants going on to win the superbowl helps them too-
i just see coach rod keeping that confidence high and them not making many mistakes and them gutting out wins. there definately not at the bottom of the league anymore. trouble is they only play one real weak team-the falcons-all the rest are there equals or better than them-i think we win a majority of those even up games because we've kept the same coach and the same system and it finally pays off-we will see

Isphet said...


If you want to Nazi your blog (henceforth, Nazi is also a verb), I say go for it. It's your blog. If others want to spout negativity about the Lions, well, blogs are free, and they can do one themselves. This is your backyard and you can trim the grass however you want to keep the weeds down.

I have to somewhat re-iterate what Clusterfox said. KJ is going to be worth what he's getting paid just to take a gamble on him not being hurt for a change. He's not going to have a multi-million dollar year though, which is what the Lions would have paid for him. It was a contractual move to release him, and everyone with half a brain knew that when he was released.

Truth is, KJ runs to get hurt. He runs into defenders to take them on. The trick to staying alive in the NFL is to know when to fall down easy and when you can get away with attacking defenders. KJ's problem was that he ALWAYS attacked them, and it very obviously wore on him as seasons dragged on. He would run at anyone to try and hit them, which was fun to watch for us, but that kind of contact takes a toll, even if you are dishing it out. I liked the dude while he ran for the Lions, but would it kill you to learn how to take a hit softly and just go down and live to run another day once in a while?

If he starts for the Bears for the whole season, there is no way he's going to last the whole year. He's going to run angry to "prove the Lions wrong" and just end up hurting himself again. I give him 8 weeks of starting, maximum, before he misses significant playing time.

A really interesting topic to blog about would be:

Alienating a fanbase: how to make a loyal legion of haters.

to describe exactly how the Lion's fanbase has come to be what they are. Other team's fanbases are in awe that a large percentage of the Lions' fans don't even like them; they just like to hate on them. This could be a whole frigging sports psychology book. Maybe I'll give it "the treatment" and submit a guest blog here, since I don't have the time or reason to start an entire blog of my own?


Isphet said...

After I posted, I had one more thought pop into my head. Ask yourself this question:

On "random team X," how many football games is Kevin Jones "worth" in a season? What I mean to say is, how many games will KJ win by himself through sheer talent alone?

Including injuries, he's maybe good for one game a year where he might be the difference between winning and losing? But that's a fluke, it's not the norm. He's not "dangerous," he's just good enough to NOT LOSE a game, not so good that he single-handedly WINS them. I'll never second-guess the Lions releasing him again after asking myself that question about KJ.

DetFan1979 said...

Thnks Isphet!

It is a good idea -- and if you would like to write a blog entry on it, just email it to me.

I enjoy being able to put different ideas up here, since I don't have time to research everything. Run with it, and I'll post it up here.

DetFan1979 said...

And good point about KJ - utilizing that theory, it seems a lot more cuts/trades make sense.

I think that's a gerat question, and one I'll be asking myself about many different players as the time for camp cuts/additions comes along, as wella s next ifseason.

BTW - Kevin Smith had a lot fo carries in college, but watching his highlights, it appears he knows when to hit em, when to drop for em, knows when to spin away, when to run....you never count your yardage, while your sitting on the sidelines.

CHIEFGER139 said...

i see only 6 have signed into the ffb-hopefully you will fill it up-
can man why arent you in?? afraid the old wize chief will kick your sorry-you no what??