Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Sometimes, you just have to pay homage...

It's been a while since I paid homage to the patron saint of this blog, the Lions' coach with the most wins, and losses, let alone by far the most entertaining, in their long, and not so esteemed history, Wayne-o, Mr. "Whaddaya mean, I'm fired?"

That being The Big Buck himself, Wayne Fontes.

The author of "From the Copa,"Rock & Rye, currently residing in exile at his parent's house, while waiting for his nuptials to take place, found this gem of a Wayne Fontes football card the other day while rummaging through his old baseball card collection. I just had to post it here at TWFE.

Wayne Fontes, unleashing his wrath of destruction on his unsuspecting NFC Central division foes...

From looking at his glorious visage, you know what?

You know that man wouldn't take the wind in OT. That man wouldn't run the "Wet toast" offense. That man wouldn't threaten to give bus tickets out of town, and not follow up on the threat. That man wouldn't keep a drunk, naked, fast food eating line coach on his staff.

Wayne wouldn't say, "Abandon ship, whomp, whomp, whomp!" Or "Snap, hold, kick!" Or "I'm a good coach, I don't coach that stuff" Or "Pound the rock." Or God forbid, "The bar is high."

Hell, Wayne set the damn bar!

Wayne wouldn't stick with a lousy QB who couldn't play, let alone allow him to throw 7 picks in 1 game. He'd play all 3 QB's on the roster. In the same damn game!

Wayne wouldn't go 3-13. Wayne would have a 6-10 season, but then go 10-6, win the division, and smoke a massive ass stogie in celebration on Monday Night Football.

Wayne's teams didn't give up on the season, become the butt of Jay Leno's jokes, then celebrate not going 0-16. His teams would start slow, but finish fast, bum rushing the playoffs every other year.

Wayne didn't take himself seriously, unlike General Ross, Marty Moronwheg, Mooch, or Sgt. Marinelli. Not The Big Buck, who always had a target on his back, a target no one could hit...

When Wayne was the man the D, the Lions may not have made the playoffs every season, and lost more than their fair share of games, but you cannot deny that Lions football was one Hell of a lot more fun.

Now it's just painful and pitiful.

Here's to you, Wayne. The Wayne Fontes Experience salutes you!


  1. What a great man.
    Some year I hope to once again wake up the morning of a Lions playoff game thinking that they are going to win. Hell, even thinking they are going to get their asses handed to them would still be pretty damn great.

  2. Who else could provide the comedy that is a father blaming his son for cocaine found in a car. Shit, even Tony Dungy is a better dad than that.

  3. I love your enthusiasm for the Lions "glory years", at least the glory years since I was born. It is a sad commentary that by recent Lions standards, Wayne Fontes is indeed a great coach. At least his last name didn't start with M.

  4. Wayne Fontes was Lions football! Like The Battleship says, it's a sad state of affairs in the D when you pine for the era when Lions were basically a .500 team, make the playoffs every other season, but never going past the 1st round.

    Still, I miss Wayne. Even during his bad seasons, and there were plenty, at least he kept things entertaining. Good Lord, this was a coach who wasn't afraid to use the screwy run and shoot offense. Who didn't care if Barry Sanders was in camp, as long as he was ready for the season. Who would change coordinators at the drop of a pass.

    You cannot deny that Wayne kept things interesting, and there was at least a smidgen of hope going into every season.

  5. Here's my take on the Wayne Fontes Era, as I previously expressed to Iffy the Dopester of the Freep...Someday people are going to look back at the Wayne Fontes Era as the Golden Age of Lions' Football. From the looks of this post and the comments that time has already come. Unlike Bobby Loss, he never ran the best player in franchise history off. And compared to the rest of these butt munches, he looks like Bill Walsh. Plus we had the game against the Niners, when both teams were good, every year at Christmas time on Monday Night Football.

  6. As I said before, I applaud your enthusiasm for the Lions but I can't join in this Wayne lovefest. To me The Fontes is something tangible. The Fontes is finding constant mediocrity to be an acceptable form of existence (fine for me but not my football team). The Fontes still lingers over the Lions, only it has metastasized since Wayne's departure like the stench of dead leaves decomposing in a rain gutter. Until someone gets The Fontes out of the Lions they will never be winners.

  7. The Ghosts Of Wayne Fontes salutes you to Wayne. You are not forgotten.