Nepotism and the Detroit Lions

ATLANTA – It’s time for Detroit Lions coach Ron Marinelli to answer a very important question without the same bullshit response, “We’ll just keep pounding the rock.”

I witnessed the Lions pathetic implosion in Atlanta on Sunday and it only took one quarter to identify a very serious issue the Lions defense has.

It was so obvious, the beer-infested fans surrounding me at the Georgia Dome, between their high-fives and “I wish we could play Detroit every week” comments, even recognized the problem.

Acceptable issues on Monday mornings are a certain defensive scheme needing a tweak or the need to create more pressure from your defensive tackles.

Regrettably, the problem with the Lions is much more severe than that. The defensive players do not know how to tackle and if they haven’t learned that skill after years of experience in pee wee, college and the NFL, they certainly will not suddenly master it after a few practices this week.

Tackling is the most fundamental task of a defense. Every play someone will attempt to advance the ball and the defense is assigned to tackle the ball carrier.

Sorry to speak third grade here but there may be a few of the Lions reading this and they need to understand what is their first and foremost responsibility because it appears no one in the Lion’s organization has taught them that yet.

So Ron, here is the question, “Who is ultimately responsible to assure the Lion’s defense knows the MOST FUNDAMENTAL chore of defense called “tackling?”

And don’t use your sorry-ass “pounding the rock”  line!”

Who is responsible for the defense’s performance?

Defensive Coordinator, Joe Barry.

Your son-in-law . . . your daughter’s husband . . . the man who collects a huge paycheck from William Clay Ford to support your daughter and grandchildren.

The guy who’s the Defensive Coordinator only because you’re his “Dad” and you placed him there thinking you could camaflauge all of his incompetence. 

Barry stands on the sidelines and watches his incompetent “D” roll over to a rookie quarterback and one of the worst teams in the NFL then skirts away from interviews and makes himself available on Thursdays to the media. That bullshit’s gotta stop!

The Lions defense were one of the worst in the NFL last year under Barry, compiling a laundry list of stats that should have led to a defensive coordinator change.

Marinelli was comfortable giving offensive coordinator Mike Martz the ax and handing his first defensive coordinator Donnie Henderson a pink slip after only one season due to “lack of performance” so why not address Barry’s performance after last year’s disaster and yesterday’s debacle in Atlanta.

While Marinelli and Matt Millen continue to “pound the rock”the Lions fans will continue to pound their heads against the wall and be expected to sit through what could be another disaterous year until Marinelli gets fired and has to take his son-in-law with him.

An organization should NEVER allow management to hire relatives in positions of that capacity.

Nepotism is defined as, “showing favoritism to family members or relatives by those in power without an objective evaluation of their ability to perform . . .”

Joe Barry was never a defensive coordinator in the NFL, never had proven his ability to perform and the Lions were in too desperate a position to hire a rookie coordinator when they hired him.

Somehow, Joe Barry is coasting under the radar, ducking the severe criticism he deserves. But after his defense just showed the most pathetic display of missed tackling ever seen in an NFL game, that may finally change.

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