Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Not gonna happen

I've had a lot of people suggest that I should send the Ford's and Millen a message by returning my season tickets. The suggestions have tried to be creative in suggesting that I write a nice letter, try to publicize it with the local media, and basically get my 15 seconds of fame for not supporting the franchise. They all hinge on the premise that the action by me could possibly have some kind of impact on Millen's employment or the Ford's ownership.

Let me be clear about this - It's not going to happen.

Here's a particularly good exchange from one thread that I think signifies what I'm talking about.
Me: "The fact of the matter here is that the Lions are 0-5. They haven't been this bad since 2001. You can try to put lipstick on this pig, but I still ain't kissing it..."
neveragainlikebarry: "Oh yes you are kissing it;actually you've got your tongue all the way down it's throat! You have season tickets don't you? you have at least one jersey,right? You by their hotdogs.pop and beer correct? Basicly if you go to the games you keep Millen in there, hence no change whatsoever."
My response: When I first read this one, I was going to post reply with something snarky, but then I came to realize there is probably too much truth in it. Quick summary:

You have season tickets don't you? Yes, just got them this year. In a lot of ways this is the worst year to have gotten them as I missed out on getting a shot at SB tickets.

You by their hotdogs.pop and beer correct? Beer, yes but only to keep my buzz from tailgating going. Hotdogs and pop no as I'm already full from aforementioned tailgating.

Basicly if you go to the games you keep Millen in there, hence no change whatsoever. I don't think this is accurate. The profitability of the team and the stadium more positively reflects on Tom Lewand than Millen. The play on the field reflects Millen, and it's never been this bad. I don't know that my not going to games would have any material impact on Millen's employment, since there is still a season ticket waiting list.

Some interesting ideas in this thread about abandoning my season tickets. But I'll put it this way - Unless there is some benefit to me to get rid of them, it ain't happening. I paid a lot of cash for the tickets. I'm not the kind of guy to spend a lot of money and get nothing for them (please no snarky comments about the Lions haven't given me anything yet - that's why I'm angry).

So if I were to give up the tickets and send them to management and let all the TV stations know, I'd accomplish what exactly? I'd get 15 seconds of fame on the local news, then I'll have realized I have said take the $600 face value for the remainder of my tix and keep it. Not a fair trade in my book. I'd rather keep the seats and be able to @#%$ about the play from a seat in the stadium than have to rely completely on my TiVo for my frustration.
So there you have it. I'm not giving up my seats. I have a sneaking suspicion that some of the people who make these suggestions are still on the waiting list and are trying to free up more seats (note the dripping sarcasm). I don't think giving up my seats would accomplish anything besides keeping me out of the stadium. Besides, it took me too dang long to get these seats, so I sure as heck am not going to give up the tickets now...

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Gone in 60 Seconds...

OK, having calmed down from my reactionary phase following the game, I decided to take a look back and try to figure out what happened that drove home another loss for the Lions. Unfortunately, I don't think that I have any really great insight beyond what anyone else has said recently. This was actually a very simple game to analyze.

The Lions lost this game on 2 plays within a minute of each other in the 4th quarter. It really is that simple. The Lions led 17-3, and Minnesota scored a TD to make it 17-10. Eddie Drummond returned the ensuing kickoff all the way for a TD, but it was nullified by a block in the back by Donte Curry. Two plays later, the O-line forgot to block Pat Williams. Williams hit Jon Kitna from behind just after he made a playaction fake and while his hands were still low, causing him to fumble at the 10 yard line and it was returned for a TD by Ben Leber.

Two plays, 56 seconds apart, a game swings 13 points from being 24-10 to being 17-16.

I wish I had something more in depth to point to, but that really was the ballgame. Minnesota's O only scored 12 points all day, and the Lions O scored 17. Even with Roy Williams hurt and out. Even with Damien Woody hurt and out. Even with only 2 of our pre-season starters playing on the O-Line. Even with KJ getting hit almost simultaneously as he got the ball. Even with Az Hakim dropping 5 passes. It still didn't matter.

This game was in the bag.

And then those two plays completely changed the entire outcome of the game. The D looked decent enough – they only gave up 12 points. The O for all it's injuries scored 17 points. Sure, it wasn't pretty as the O really wasn't moving the ball much beyond the points scored off the turnovers. But at least they had turnovers to score off of this week. The D was giving up yards to Chester Taylor in the run game as well, but he really didn't hurt them too much. The team stats looked skewed due to the Lions inability to run, but it really wasn't an issue. They were still moving the ball enough to win.

Except for those two plays.

On the first, Curry made a slight shove on the guy's back. He should know better than to do that. I heard the announcers say his block definitely impacted the run, but in my looking at the replay, I doubt it. The defender wasn't in position to contain Drummond from getting to the outside as he did. But it was a stupid penalty, and it cost the Lions 90 yards of field position and a score.

The second play has been diagrammed by everyone to death. No one even blocked Pat Williams. It was a complete communication breakdown on where everyone had to go. Kitna never saw it coming and was hit from behind far too quickly for any QB to dream of on a playaction pass.

And that was the ballgame. Sure, you could make an argument that the Lions should have scored more points. Or that Kitna couldn't lead them down the field during the 4th quarter. Or that Az Hakim's butterfingers came back to haunt us again. But the truth of the matter is that the game went from being a win to a loss in those 56 seconds near the beginning of the 4th quarter. Had Curry not made that block, the score is 24-10, and the Lions aren't sitting at the 10 yard line for the next play to happen. The second D TD by the Vikes was inconsequential in the grand scheme of things other than it prevented the Lions from scoring a go-ahead TD or FG. But again, without those two earlier plays, the Lions wouldn't have been pressing on 4th and 10.

The Vikings proved all day long (and all season long for that matter) that their version of the Wet Toast O is just as inefficient at putting points on the board as the Lions was for the last 5 years. It should be painfully obvious to everyone now that the Wet Toast O is an O for a great mobile QB to excel in, but anyone else is dead meat in it. The Vikings weren't going to score 14+ points on O at that point in the game. They had only scored 10 in just over 3 quarters, plus the Lions D showed after that that they could hold them to a FG over 2 more series for the Kikes.

It really is simple. Eliminate those two glaring mistakes, and we're sitting here with a win on the books.

Sunday, October 08, 2006


Hey folks, I'm back after a few weeks off on business travel. So I get back and I tuned in to watch the Lions - Queens game today. It definitely set off some emotions in me.

There's only one way to describe what I'm feeling toward the Lions right now. I'm mad. So mad I had to restrain myself from kicking my dog, that's how mad. Once again, this team of bumbling fools finds a way to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

Tell me honestly - Does anyone really feel better about the team this year than they did any of the last four years with Joey at QB? If so, please send some of whatever you're smoking my way as you are ridiculously high. The team is 0-5. They were NEVER this bad with Joey under center. Yet all I hear is how people have so much better of a feeling about this team.

Get a clue - this is about as bad as it gets.

So the O is a more exciting as they throw the ball downfield. Big deal, they still lose. The D finally looks decent for a game, so the O blows chunks.

2 defensive TD's given up in the 4th quarter? Are you kidding me?

Where is the anger? Where are the calls for Kitna's head? Where are the calls for firing Marinelli? The start this year has me more upset than any other year of Millen's reign. The play is inexcusable. We've seen the same stupid penalties, the same bumbled plays, the same dropped passes. Well, OK that's just because Az Hakim is now a Lion again - didn't we learn that lesson already about his hands?

And please, I don't want to hear any excuses about Roy and Woody getting hurt. We've lost key players every year for the last 6 seasons. Injuries seem to be more a fact of life with this franchise than any other I can think of. The problem is that no one ever steps up when someone else goes down.

I'm mad. First game I've seen in three weeks due to business travel and I had to witness that debacle. It's a dang good thing I have Tigers tickets for next Sunday so I won't have to go to the game. Here I was thinking that based on what I've heard that the O had come around, and the D now had to step up.

Nope. Same Old Lions.

Maybe I'll write something more about the game tomorrow after I've calmed down. What a freaking joke...