It is interesting how the losing streak of the Rams has yet to draw the same kind of attention that was placed on that of the Detroit Lions — perhaps it is because it has been spread over two seasons, versus 0-16 for the Lions. The final notation is, or course, that the Rams play the Lions so they “have a shot at victory.”
Vic Carucci has them pegged in with the other zero and one win teams that he terms are “in trouble”at this point in the season. Wow! Not really going out on a limb there, huh? Of course they are — if they weren’t, they would have won more games!! While most of the teams have QB and/or Coaching issues, with Detroit the #1 factor in having just one win? Injuries and defensive letdowns. Considering their performance against GB — especially in the red-zone — the defense is coming along but lacks talent — especially in the secondary (but that is a story for tomorrow or friday).
Peter King actually had a pretty thoughtful piece on what some of the teams who aren’t doing really well this season are lacking – and what he thinks their chances are. He actually has some nice things to say about Martin Mayhew (although he got the Roy trade wrong – it was 1,3,6 – not 5) and thinks the the Lions and KC have the best chance of tasting some success next year! Why? His words:
Which team will turn it around in 2010? My guess is Detroit and Kansas City have the best chances because they have what appear to be strong GMs, strong coaches and quarterbacks who look like they have a chance. I don’t expect Mangini to make it long-term, and I’m dubious about Morris because Tampa’s going to lose for awhile longer — maybe quite awhile. Spagnuolo should have a shot, unless whoever buys the Rams wants a big star as coach. Schwartz and Haley will have two or three years to prove themselves.
We’re all just guessing on these teams, but the ones that turn around are usually the ones with strong coaches, consistent front offices and competent quarterbacks.
I bolded that last line because it shows what some on the national scene are starting to recognize after the competitiveness and improvement the Lions are showing on the field — including the performance of the draft picks and some of the free agents brought in by the front office. Mayhew had a heck of an ifseason, the Titans are really missing Schwartz as a coach, and Schwartz is already making an impact on the team here in Detroit.
Are the Lions “there yet?” Nope. They are struggling and growing this season, and will continue to do just that. I still think with their schedule they go .500 the last 10 games. Next season, when the Lions’ outstanding rookie class has a year under their belt, and more talent is infused, the team will have a shot to go .500 for the season. In 2011 — look out. The Lions will have an actual core of young players — Stafford, CJ, Delmas, Levy, Hill, Cohen, Pettigrew, Smith, Felton, Goz — in their prime. Then we will see some real competition in the NFC North — and a shot at the post-season.
For now, the Lions are the best of the worst; but they are going up the ladder, and best of the worst is just one step on the way to the top. IF…