Tag Archive | "Detroit Lions"

Aaron Curry should go No. 1 in NFL Draft


DETROIT – Now that we’ve spent weeks of listening to ESPN’s Todd McShay shuffle his draft order like a deck of cards and tried (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)not to stare at Mel Kiper Jr’s giant hair taking over our television screens, it’s our turn to make a prediction who will be the No. 1 overall pick by the Detroit Lions.Forecasts throughout talk shows and websites on who will be the pick for the 0-16 Lions have been changing like the weather.

Many had Georgia ‘Dawg QB Matt Stafford a solid No. 1 choice and USC QB Mark Sanchez as a possibility but drafting a quarterback high is a too big a gamble for the Lions (Google Joey Harrington). I expect the Lions to shy away from high-risk picks like Stafford or Sanchez.

New Detroit Lions Coach Jim Schwartz has not ruled out taking a quarterback in the top slot but isn’t quite sold on it yet, “We need to see [Stafford] throw,” said Schwartz who insisted Stafford come in for a personal workout.

Alabama OT Andre Smith, another one-time projected No. 1 overall has also fallen off the top rung of my ladder after he ditched the combine on drill day and when finally performing in front of a group of NFL observers, failed miserably. His numbers included a 5.28 second 40-yard dash and a 225 bench press 19 times.

Many of Smith’s numbers for the day would not have placed him even in the top ten of the OT’s on combine day. With a history of weight control issues and his inability to produce top numbers, it’s obvious why Smith decided to abandon the combine.

Blocking has little to do with running in a straight line for 40 yards but conditioning does and Smith clearly is lacking conditioning. The Detroit Lions have dealt with weight issues in their recent past including with their All-Pro defensive lineman, Sean ‘Big Baby’ Rogers.

The Lions responded to that problem by trading Big Baby away after the player spent dozens of snaps a game sucking down oxygen on the sidelines. It’s safe to say the Lions are not interested in dealing with another potential weight-control or conditioning issue.

The slam-dunk pick of the draft is Wake Forest linebacker Aaron Curry. Curry is believed to be the safest pick and as the Lions attempt to survive a decade of draft disasters and the stench that fired President Matt Millen has left behind, it is imperative they end up with a player who can step into a starting position on opening day.

That player is Aaron Curry and I expect to see him donning Honolulu Blue alongside Ernie Sims on opening day after being selected as the No. 1 overall pick on draft day.

Copyright © 2009 – Sports Climax

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Millen and other Lions’ failures find new NFL homes


DETROIT – Almost with a cult-like feel where everyone is watching each other’s back, the NFL is becoming a place where one can barrymarinellibigfail miserably, get canned short of contract obligations and be rewarded with huge guaranteed buyouts followed by job offers from other teams around the league; technically resulting in ‘pay raises’ when you combine both salaries together.Believe it or not, members of the Detroit Lions’ ‘coaching staff’ have been rewarded with new NFL jobs after their record-setting 0-16 implosion in Motown this season.

The biggest failure, incompetent defensive coordinator Joe Barry, son-in-law of fired head coach Rod Marinelli and beneficiary of the Lions’ nepotism program, has found a new home in Seattle as the linebackers coach.

Barry’s ‘Dad’ has been handed a headset by Detroit’s rival Chicago Bears where he will be assistant head coach/defensive line coach. Amazing how far friendship can go.

Bears’ head coach Lovie Smith and Rod go way back to their days of sharing hotel rooms while on road trips with the Tampa Bay Bucs. As bad as Marinelli has been out of touch with football over the past three years, Smith still extended his hand. Examiner Paula Duffy talks about Marinelli going ‘Back to the Future’.

Offering jobs and paychecks to guys like Barry and Marinelli after their orchestration of the disaster in Detroit, is like bringing Enron’s Kenneth Lay back from the dead and putting him on the payroll to run the World Bank.

While Matt Millen’s stench remains with the Lions and people are still celebrating the end to the Matt Millen Era, the incompetent exec was handed a warm, comfortable spot in the NBC booth where he will share his ‘knowledge’ (?) with fans across the nation during this year’s Super Bowl.

The vicious media onslaught and negative response Millen has received from many of the fans and media since that hiring is the same cold welcome these two coaches deserve; but in a country where people have grown more short-sighted than a napping amnesiac, expect business to go on as usual.

Too bad Sports Climax isn’t run like the NFL. I could create 16 articles containing a roster full of typos that generates 0 hits (like a Joe Barry defense). After creating the 0-16 run with no traffic I could toss in a few articles that make no logical sense like, “Millen has knowledge to share with NFL fans” only to be promoted to Webmaster with a pay raise.

Copyright © 2009 – Sports Climax

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Bitch-Slap-of-the-Week – Lions DC Joe Barry


This week’s bitch slap goes to Detroit Lions’ defensive coordinator Joe Barry and it comes from every NFL offense he barrymarinellibighas faced this season with an additional few backhands coming from a handful of columnists who have had enough with him holding on to a job he clearly is not qualified for.

After last week’s shellacking and shredding of Barry’s defense in a 42-7 loss to the Saints, Detroit News columnist Rob Parker asked Rod Marinelli if he wishes his daughter had married a better defensive coordinator. Barry is married to Marinelli’s daughter.

This question triggered a negative reaction by the national media toward Parker but what the underlying root of this whole scenario is, is the fact Barry has retained a job due to the Lions’ nepotism program and Parker was drawing attention to that.

National Examiner sports columnist Tom Ferda had more to say on this topic in his column this week, “Marinelli was comfortable giving offensive coordinator Mike Martz the ax before this season 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 during this year’s debacle”.

Barry’s toothless defense is dead last in the NFL giving up 486 points through 15 games while allowing a league-leading 400 yards per game. That’s one entire football field per quarter!

This is the second year Barry has accomplished creating one of the worst defenses in the league. Many believed he should have been long gone after last season.

Some blame the Bobby Layne Curse but the fact is, Joe Barry is one of the major contributors to this record-setting joke of a team. Without you on the sideline running a defense that put them out of most every game before the half, they may have tweaked out a few victories.

The recognition you are beginning to receive regarding your incompetence has justifiably earned you the Sports Climax Bitch-Slap-of-the-Week.

Copyright ©2008 Sports Climax

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Matt Millen stench remains with Detroit Lions


This is an updated version of an earlier column placed on this site.

DETROIT – As the Detroit Lions are staring 0-16 right in the face, we must not forget who is responsible for leading them down lions fanthat road of collapse.

As former team president and CEO Matt Millen sits comfortably in his home, states away in Pennsylvania, fans and the media must remember to honor him as the orchestrator of this disaster called the Lions.

Owner William Clay Ford, with the coaxing of his son, Junior, made a long overdue move after week three when he fired Millen, earning Millen the Bitch-Slap-of-the-Week award. 

Millen has long packed up and gone but like three-month-old fish, his stench remains.

That stench comes in the form of the coaching staff, blown draft picks and free agent signings Millen had pieced together over his historic record run of failure.

Millen’s Lions team is 0-14 with a game at home Sunday against the Drew Brees led New Orleans Saints and a final road game in frigid Green Bay where the Cheeseheads always play to win.

Many expect Millen to make NFL history next Sunday, surpassing the Tampa Bay Bucs 0-14 record of futility, a record that held for decades.

Things will not change in Detroit overnight. A bumper-to-bumper refurbish job needs to be done. Marinelli, who is on the verge of emotionally imploding, and the rest of the staff Millen hired needs to go, there is no doubt about that.

Joe Barry, defensive coordinator and benefiter of Detroit’s nepotism program, has managed and created the worst defense in the NFL over the past two seasons. And how sorry is it to actually hear him in yesterday’s press conference in Detroit talking about how the defense will definitely improve if returns next year.

Besides Millen, Barry may be the biggest cause of this year’s implosion. If he had half of a conscience, he would refuse his paycheck and would have resigned the week Millen got his pink slip.

Only in Detroit can a coach speak like there is any possibility of returning to the team even after a 0-16 season. Look at Millen. He was actually signed to an extension after taking a 7-9 team to 3-13 and wasting high first-round draft picks.

It looks like the Lions will be getting another No. 1 overall pick in a draft and the good news is, Matt Millen will not be the one making the selection.

In the meantime, Lions fans should plug their noses from the stench Millen has left; a stench that may linger for years to come.

Copyright © 2008 – Sports Climax

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Congress should require Ford to sell Detroit Lions


The Detroit Lions fans only hope for a future may be Congress voting through a bailout plan for the poorly-managed faltering Ford Motor Company.

Last I noticed, Ford Motor Company was asking for $9 billion of fans/taxpayers dollars while making no indications they intend to sell the Lions which are valued by Forbes to be worth $917 million.

Ford’s recent reported losses have been huge. According to their media.ford.com website they had a net loss of $8.7 billion in the second quarter of 2008 and according to CNN Money.com burned through another $6.3 billion in the third quarter of 2008. At that rate, it is possible they could eat up a loan of $9 billion in a short time.

With support from some of the local politicians and pressure from taxpayers around the country, Michiganders can present a scenario to Congress that includes the Fords being required to sell the Lions if they are included in any bailout.

I have had a few emails from people explaining how technically William Clay is not the owner of Ford Motor Company. Corporations are legally laid out however companies decide to lay them out. Ford’s website has William Clay listed at the highest position, Executive Chairman and you have to assume William Clay owns a decent portion of that stock recently valued at less than a Starbucks small coffee.

It is absurd to allow the Ford family to maintain an entity like the Lions in their portfolio while agreeing to hand over billions of tax dollars to save their auto company’s sinking ship.

If Joe Citizen is in desperate financial shape and asks a bank to bail them out of a foreclosure on their home, shouldn’t that bank make them sell his Bentley and second home on the ocean first? Even though the Bentley is not related to the house going into foreclosure, it is part of that family’s portfolio. Don’t get me wrong, the Lions are more like a rusted-out Yugo but you get my point.

If the Ford Motor Company is asking for $9 billion, Congress should minus the $917 million they are forced to acquire from the sale of the Lions then give them $8.08 billion instead.

First of all, handing these auto companies $34 billion is like flushing the money down the toilet but if Congress did approve a ridiculous bad investment of tax dollars like that, the people of Detroit could seize the opportunity and possibly get the Ford family off their field.

The Miami Dolphins and Atlanta Falcons are great examples of how an NFL franchise can turn it around in one year if they are under the proper ownership and management.

Matt Millen, the creator of the Lions current dismal coaching staff and player personnel was sent packing the day after Mike Martz’ San Fran 49ers whipped the Lions earlier this season, earning Millen the Bitch-Slap-of-the-Week award on Sports Climax. 

Removing another cancer like owner William Clay Sr. would open the door to new ownership and a possible turnaround. Imagine, new ownership would lead to new management which leads to a new coaching staff (Google Bill Cowher) and smart draft selections, something this NFL team hasn’t experienced in a decade.

Congress, if you do bail out Ford Motor Company, remember to bail out the Detroit Lions fans as well, these poor loyalists have been through enough.

Copyright © 2008 – Sports Climax

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This NFL Ref Wears his I.Q. on his Jersey


NFL back judge #59 Phil Luckett is the incompetent zebra who made an ass out of himself on national television during the Detroit Lions and Pittsburgh Steelers Thanksgiving Day game in 1998.

Lined up for the overtime coin toss, Steelers captain and running back, Jerome Bettis was hooked up to an audio sound system and called “tails”.

Everybody at the stadium and at home heard Bettis’ call over the audio; everyone except for the dumb f**k who flipped the coin.

After Bettis called “tails”, the coin landed tails up, Luckett said, “Heads is the call; he said heads. It’s a tails.”

Bettis was shocked and yelled:

“I called tails!”

Luckett responded:

“No you didn’t”

Then the ref awarded the ball to the Lions.

The Steelers were up in arms, Luckett pushed them away and the rest is history. The Lions drove down the field on their first possession, Jason Hanson booted a 43 yard game-winner and Luckett would go on to add a laundry list of officiating blunders during his NFL career.

Copyright © 2008 – Sports Climax

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Is Detroit Lions’ Coach Marinelli Finally Losing it?


Is Detroit Lions’ coach Rod Marinelli finally losing it? How much can we expect one man to take. We’ve heard of train wrecks but Marinelli’s Lions are a train derailment.

It took him a little longer to get the “deer-in-headlights” look than some of the other ‘M’ coaches who were hired by recently-fired team CEO Matt Millen.

Millen, Mornhinweg, Mariucci, all are notorious for leaving the media scratching their heads while they stood at the mics with glassy-eyed glares, mumbling on like crazy homeless guys, trying to come up explanations on how and why they and their team were so incompetent.

One of Marinelli’s recent inarticulate rant sounded like a monologue out of “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”.

Get the syringe ready, where’s the Valium!

Here’s Marinelli’s mumble-jumble at that press conference on November 12, 2008.

“You’re in this dark tunnel and you’ve got no way out,” he said. “You’re waiting for light, and you see that light, what do you do? What do you do?

You start digging and getting out. … I’ve always believed you stay in the tunnel and you keep digging when you expect no light.

“You have the same faith when you expect no light. You have the same belief in what you’re doing when you expect no light. … It’s dark and I’m going to dig through. My shovel is sharp and my pick is sharp and my will is outstanding.”

Sharp shovel, dull shovel, pick or no pick, Marinelli appears emotionally drained at this point.

After yesterday’s loss to Carolina, his team dropped further into the cellar to a league-worst 0-10 and he jumped in the face of one of the reporters during the post-game, “You go out there and find me guys on the street and bring them into Allen Park and I’ll inspect them”, referring to replacing his current players with anyone off the street.

Scary thing is, he sounded way too serious.

What can you say besides the stress of coaching the worst team in NFL history is capable of driving a man crazy . . . maybe literally.

Copyright © 2008 – Sports Climax

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NFL should take Thanksgiving game away from Lions


Santa Claus comes early every year for the Detroit Lions, on Thanksgiving to be exact. The jolly old soul hands the Lions their annual ‘gift’ in the form of a Thanksgiving game on their home field.

This is a clear case of not needing to be ‘good’ in any way shape or form to receive this handout from the NFL.

Year after year, this franchise struggles, and against the will of many of the other NFL owners, they continue to keep the Thanksgiving Game and the exposure that goes along with it.

Over the years many owners have brought up discussions and votes have occurred to move this game around the league to share the revenue. Somehow William Clay Ford continues to keep the game in his hometown of Detroit.

You have to wonder if the fact Ford Motor Company is one of the NFL’s biggest and most loyal advertisers has anything to do with this joke of an organization keeping this game.

I personally have attended several Thanksgiving games over the years and it’s quite the tradition. I saw O.J. Simpson shatter the single game rushing record when his Buffalo Bills visited the Lions at Pontiac Silverdome back in the 70’s. I spent many Thanksgiving days tailgating, seeing the game then finishing the day off stuffing myself with turkey dinner.

I love tradition and have a strong track record of supporting and keeping it. It makes my gut hurt to say this, but it is time for a change. To make NFL fans across the nation sit through a Lions game on this upcoming holiday and the ones to follow is absurd. It is time for Ford and his 0-9 Lions to hand over the torch.

The Dallas Cowboys were a dismal 1-15 one year but rebuilt and bounced back over the years, becoming a contender and winning a Super Bowl, earning the right to keep their spot.

The Lions on the other hand have shown no improvement over that same span, in fact they have gotten worse as their record over the past decade indicates.

If you’re out there Santa Claus, stop handing this gift to this NFL team and deliver a stocking full of coal and sticks to Ford and his Lions.

Taking the game from the Lions and spreading it throughout the league would bring much joy to fans across the nation.

Making this change is like delivering a Christmas gift to the rest of the NFL football world and relieves them from the agony and torture of sitting through Lion debacles year-after-year.

There is a rebuttal to this case and point found on Deadspin.

Copyright © 2008 – Sports Climax

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Daunte Culpepper should avoid Lions


Run, Daunte, RUN!

In the opposite direction of the Detroit Lions facility in Allen Park.

Daunte Culpepper and the Detroit Lions confirmed the NFL quarterback had a “Good workout” with the Lions and is staying in contact with them concerning playing for the team.

Culpepper should seriously reconsider going to the 0-7 team that implodes annually and many feel is staffed with minor-leaguers dressed up in NFL attire.

The Lions have a solid history of destroying talented player’s and coaches careers (Google Marcus Pollard, Tatum Bell, Steve Mariucchi).

There is something about donning the silver and blue in Detroit . . . failure is sure to follow and the team is in more disarray and turmoil as ever. This may sound odd but they are actually worse than their 0-7 record, getting blown out and falling behind 21-0 in a majority of their games.

Culpepper’s arm has some life left in it. Enough life to provide a competitive team with a solid run into the playoffs . . . that team is not the Detroit Lions; this year, next or any year in the near future.

Why go out with a crash like Jon Kitna and Tatum Bell and Steve Mariucchi?

If he is simply looking for a paycheck, he can go on an autograph or speaking tour to fill up his piggy bank and wait for an NFL team to offer him a spot in the near future or next season.

Daunte, who has thrown for more than 22,000 yards in his nine-year career, will take a physical beating scrambling for his life behind the inept ‘O’ line of the Lions (Google Jon Kitna) and shorten what little is left of his career.

Be patient, Daunte, good fortune and jobs come to those who wait.

RUN, Daunte, RUN!

Copyright © 2008 – Sports Climax

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Favre admits phone call; Lions refuse comment


Updated on Oct. 23 @ 6:50 a.m.

NEW YORK – Looks like it’s time for the “he said, she said” game. Brett Favre denies giving Matt Millen and the Detroit Lions information on his ex-Packer’s offense prior to the Lion’s Sept. 14 game against the Packers earlier this year and reporter Jay Glazer said he investigated this story fully and continues to defend it.

“I stand by my story 1000 percent,”Glazer told The Associated Press. “I guess Brett and I will just agree to disagree on certain things. The way I do my work, I don’t go on what just one person told me. I investigated this fully and for quite some time. I spoke with several sources, and when I go with something, I make sure it’s dead-on. I think my track record speaks for itself.”

Favre made a few comments at the Jet’s weekly press conference, “When Matt called me and was talking about hunting . . . don’t think for a second I wasn’t thinking, ‘Now, surely he wants to know something,’  Yeah, I played for the Packers for 16 years and we played against the Lions a bunch, but it’s no secret what we did against them. I don’t have a playbook from Green Bay. I didn’t send the playbook. I didn’t call him and say, ‘Look, if you do this, you’re going to win the game.’ I didn’t do that.”

He added that if he were “a guessing man,” there’s a chance other (Lions coaches or staff) might have been listening in on the conversation.

Favre went on to say that sharing information is common in the NFL, and it isn’t against league rules.

“It happens every day,” Favre said. “It happens more than you know. Nothing happened that was any different than happens any other day. But the fact I was in Green Bay for so long and what happened this offseason, that makes it a big deal. I didn’t give (Millen) any game planning, I haven’t been in that offense in over a year. I don’t know what else to tell you. It was pretty simple.”

Against the rules or not, this doesn’t sit well with many players or fans. Glazer’s report said that Favre who was sent off to the New York Jets after an ugly divorce with the Packers, spent over an hour on the phone with Lions coaches, giving the hopeless Lions information on his former team’s offense. Favre says he spoke to Millen for ‘no more than 25 minutes’.

Either way, how embarrassing is this for the Lions since it appears Matt Millen did indeed contact Favre and his Lions got their asses handed to them on their home field 48-25 in front of 60,285 fans.

The Lions continue to ‘refuse comment’. Most anyone would agreee if there was no ill-intent on the Lions part, then they should step up to the plate, look the media in the eyes and explain nothing unethical happened.

The Lions Coach Rod Marinelli preaches accountability and good character to his staff and players, yet when something like this occurs or when one of his coaches drives through a Wendy’s drive-through naked, he is the first one to turn his cheek.  

If and when all the facts surrounding this surface and prove their was info sharing, this is worse than the New England Patriots spying scandal that rocked the NFL last year. At least the Pats were cheating trying to help themselves and those games in question were all victories.

The Lions are embarrassing enough when they get blown out playing fair but if they had a little extra helpful information and still got blown out, that is nothing short of pathetic, and Favre would be nothing short of pathetic for offering it to them, regardless of who called who.

Favre’s move would be taken as a blatant retaliation for the Packers offering the player an invite to come out of retirement, AGAIN, and compete to earn a starting spot on the team.

Favre didn’t want to compete. He wanted the QB spot handed to him.

After seeing Aaron Rodgers perform so well several weeks into the season, it’s obvious why the coaching staff wanted the white-hairing, old-timer to have to beat out the younger, quarterback.

Favre then said he was done and the relationship was trashed. His ego took off like a rocket and landed him in New York.

Speaking of Rockets and NY; almost overnight, Roger Clemens has lost most of the trust and respect that took him decades to gain and Favre may be following those same footsteps.

Some of the players were not afraid to voice their opinion on the issue. “He contacted them? I don’t respect that,” former Michigan Wolverine CB Charles Woodson said. “To seek a team out and to feel like you’re trying to sabotage this team, I don’t respect that. I know he’s been the greatest player around here for a long time, but there’s no honor in that.”

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said the league had no comment but stressed that Glazer’s report detailed no illegal action. I can hear the Patriots screaming from here.

If such actions aren’t considered out of bounds, Woodson said they should be.

“I’ve never called a coach on another team and told them what’s going to happen,” Woodson said. “Obviously . . . there is a little bit of resentment there.”

Offensive lineman, Scott Wells said it would be disappointing if Favre shared information with a division rival. “Obviously it didn’t work out too well for them. We were still able to go out and move the ball on them and win the game.”

Copyright © 2008 – Sports Climax

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