Tuesday, October 17, 2006

I'm tired. I'm fed up. I'm not sure I care. The Detroit Lions should take heed

I was reviewing my recent blog posts, a good month's worth, and I realized that something was missing. What's missing is a noticable lack of posts in regard to the team whose former coach inspired the name of this blog. That team, the long lost cause, that ship of fools known as the Detroit Lions, should be very worried.

Why should the Lions care about the lunatic ravings of a piss ant little blog? Because it takes a dedicated fan to post his thoughts, on a daily basis, about the teams that he cares for, is passionate about, and has been a lifelong fan. And if that lifelong fan's interest is gradually waning, what does it say about the rest of the Lions fanbase? It sure can't be good, and it dosen't bode well for the future.

I've watched every Lions game this season. (Thanks to the DVR in a couple of cases) In fact, I watched every minute of the Buffalo game Sunday. Like the rest of you, I got animated a couple of times during the game. But after the Lions locked up the win, I was ambivalent. In fact, this entire season has been, for lack of a better word, "Meh."

Then something clicked. I knew exactly how I was feeling. As of late, watching the Lions has been compareable to, for me anyway, watching the MSU Spartans.

I've said in the past, about my college fandom, that Michigan football is life and death. I watched the PSU game Saturday night, and it was white knuckle time. I was in fear of that night in Happy Valley becoming the "Trap" game. (Unfounded fear, as it turned out) All Wolverine fans, alumni or not, will watch this entire season intently, with gritted teeth and those white knuckes, worrying beyond measure of Lloyd getting too conservative, scared that the letdown game we all fear will come about, while waiting for this year's "Game of the century" with the Bucknuts. In other words, I care. A lot.

Sparty, on the other hand? I'll watch their games, and always root for them. But as for my feelings? If Sparty wins...Hey, that's pretty cool, John L. is one crazy ass loon, now now what other game is on? If Sparty loses...Hey, that's too bad, John L. is one crazy ass loon, now what other game is on? In other words, "Meh."

The Lions got their first meaningless victory of the season Sunday. And I thought, "That's nice, Millen should be fired, now who's playing in the 4 o'clock games?"

That's how I'm finding myself feeling about the Lions.

Really, what's the big deal about the Lions beating a Buffalo team that is just as awful? Come on, 0-6, 1-5, is there really any difference? I said a month ago that the season was already over. Why on earth should I get excited? 2006 is just another in a long string of losing seasons, a season that is leading nowhere but to a top 5 draft pick that Matt Millen will once again blow.

Despite what we may hear otherwise from Allen Park, another rebuilding plan is underway. It's not as if they have a choice, as the Millen era, as has every era since William Clay Ford bought the team, been a debacle.

We've seen stupid coaches, player's coaches, and disiplinarian coaches, none have been winning coaches. The Millen led drafts have given the Lions next to nothing. The #2 and #3 overall picks of their respective drafts, Charles Rogers and Joey Harrington, have been sent packing, with #10 overall Mike Williams all but guaranteed to follow. An overpaid conerback, Dre' Bly, is the closest thing we've seen to an inpact free agent signing. Under center is a stopgap QB in his mid-30's, who's not a game changer, just a game manager. The O-line can't stay healthy. The D-line under-performs. The linebackers spend more time in the infirmary than on the field. The skill position players, save for Roy Williams, show only flashes of said skill. Odds are, the current coaching regime will blow the roster up. Again.

Why should I let my blood pressure rise to dangerous levels, thanks to a team that could give 2 shits about their fans?

We, the long time Lion fan, have been taking abuse from the Lions for decades. They just piss all over us. Russ Thomas pissed on us when we were kids. Matt Millen continues to piss on us as adults. The Fords have pissed on their entire fanbase for our entire lives. For what? 1 lousy playoff win in half a century. You have to be well into your 50's to even remotely remember when the Lions were kings of the NFL.

When the under .500 Wayne Fontes era is your fondest memory, you know that the Lions have such long term and deep set issues, that even the next coming of George Halas, Vince Lombardi, Tom Landry, Don Shula and Chuck Knoll combined couldn't fix.

I'm not going to be like those who can switch alliegance to another team. Not me, I can't do it. Not as a lifelong Detroiter. In fact, I'm going to continue to watch, root for, and write about the Lions. What I'm not going to do is blindly follow the Lions like lemmings into the abyss. It's not worth the heartache. I refuse to live and die with them, not this season. Not while the blind is leading the clueless in the Lions front office.

I'm tired of the entire Detroit Lions circus, and I don't have the emotional reserves anymore to dredge up when watching them. Those reserves belong to the Tigers and Wolverines at this point. And then the Pistons and Red Wings.

The Lions need to wake up. Just because the NFL is king, doesn't mean that they will be at the top of the Detroit sports heap. They could very easily turn into the Tigers of the last 10 years, the Tigers that became irrelevant after opening day, that were nothing more than a diversion between the end of the Wings and Pistons playoffs, and the start of Lions training camp. After this season, that will no longer be true.

Fans are caring less and less about the Lions, and it's not going to get any better. Apathy is setting in, and the Lions can do nothing to stop it. Not until there is an apocalyptic cleansing of the front office.

Well, at least I can take solace in one thing. I could be a fan of the Arizona Cardinals...

1 comment:

  1. I'm with you on the meh factor, but you know, I still watch the games, albeit with less passion or hope then I had as a youngster. Honestly, I don't do that when the Tig's or Piston's stink, and I consider myself more of a baseball fan.

    The Lion's have gotten into the bloodstream of this state somehow. I lived in mid-Michigan for a dozen years and everybody watched every game regardless of how bad the Lions were. I'm not sure there is another franchise in sports quite like our Lions. They have been a punch-line for an entire generation yet they still have overwhelming fan loyalty.

    Can you imagine how insane Michigan would get if the Lions had a winner? I've been a baseball fan all of my life, but I have known plenty of people who can't stand the game, and more who think that basketball or hockey are minor sports. I've never met a guy who isn't a football fan however, and we've all continued to watch the Lions despite 40 years of futility.