Friday, September 01, 2006

Charles Rogers, we hardly knew ye

I'm ready for the Charles Rogers fiasco to come to a most pitiful end. It's obvious that the Lions "Braintrust" (Term used very loosely), despite all the talk before yesterday's game that Rogers would see "Significant" playing time, had written off the 2nd overall pick of the 2003 draft. Playing 1 series of exhibition garbage time all but confirmed it.

This was the Lions own version of "Full Metal Jacket," starring Sgt. Marinelli as Gunnery Sgt. Hartman, and Charles Rogers as Pvt. Gomer Pyle. Rogers was the designated punching bag to be sacrificed for the greater good of the platoon team, in Marinelli's mind anyway.

Marinelli is dead set on changing the philosophy of the Lions, and if that means sacrificing an entire season, he's going to do so. He has the full backing of the functionally retarded Matt Millen, so he has free reign. If his job won't be in jeopardy, then why not cut a hugely talented, if flawed, Rogers? Don't coach him, just cut him to set an example. Show the rest of the roster who has the power. Even if that means playing undrafted free agent wide recievers from directional colleges.

We hear all sort of platitudes from Marinelli about toughness. But wouldn't the tougher thing to do would be to actually coach Rogers? Keep him on the roster, and make him a player? Focus the talent we all know is there? Nope, just give Chuck a bus ticket out of town, and claim that having hard working practice players is far better than having somewhat lackidasical 1st round talent. That's nice and all, but if what I've seen in games so far is an indication of how well hard working practice players will perform on the scoreboard, give me the talent every time. It's the NFL, where talent trumps all, and not high school, where example setting belongs...

Terry Foster made an excellent point on his radio show a few days ago. Barry Sanders was an awful practice player, and we all know how he skipped the "Voluntary" (Term used loosely) workouts in the off season. In Marinelli-land, Sanders would be on the cut bubble, and Ron Rivers would have been the starting tailback. When you think about it, it may be far fetched, but that's the reasoning Marinelli is using with Rogers and Mike Williams.

I hate being put into the position of defending Rogers. Much of this fiasco is his fault. But I can see why he basically gave up. Minds were already made up. Marinelli needed his Pvt. Pyle to set the tone. Rogers, with all his baggage, was the easiest target. I'm sure the "Braintrust" thought the public would be 100% behind their mind games. But the execution was so transparent, even the most casual fan could see that Rogers was never going to be allowed to give a mea culpa, and prove himself on the field.

I hope to Hell that Marinelli makes me eat my words. But the way the the roster is currently setting up, along with the lack of results on the field, and the on going "Brilliance" of Matt Millen, I really don't see that happening anytime soon.

Thankfully we have the Tigers playoff run to keep our minds off the slow motion train wreck that is the Lions. I've done enough rubbernecking for the time being, the Tigers are winning, and actually DESERVE my attention.

1 comment:

  1. I was surprised to see James Davis cut. Kelly Butler too. But in Marinelli I trust I guess.

    If not for the fact that they play in the NFC North I wouldn't like their chances to win four games.