I remember the Thanksgiving Classic when they faced off against the Tennessee Titans. At this point in the season the city of Detroit knew that the Lions playoff dreams were lost, but they had high hopes of maintaining some pride in their team. The Lions stormed the field in their faded blue-and-gray throwback jerseys, ready to get their first win of the year. In a pregame interview, Daunte Culpepper said that this was going to be the game where they end the losing streak and bring some self respect back to Detroit.
I like to think this one game summed up the entire Lions 2008 season. The sullen, defeated Lions did not get excited about another game for the rest of the season, and they seemed to settle into their position as the worst NFL team in history with quiet acceptance. You would think that things can’t get much worse after going 0-16. You would think that, until you look at this year's draft.
Last year, Jake Long signed a five-year deal with the Miami Dolphins worth $5.75 million annually, with a $30-million guarantee. This is the kind of money that gets thrown at the first-rounders. How is a team that not only had their worst playing record, but also their worst financial record in 2008 going to compete with that? Not to mention they are located in Detroit, the economic black hole of America. I’m surprised the bread lines haven’t already started forming, with old men surrounding fire barrels and kids offering to shine your shoes for a nickel.
Editor's note: I sure do wish this would happen, as I would love to be able to get kids to shine my shoes for a nickel.
The Lions do not have the money to pay the asking prices of most of these top draft picks. The Lions would be better off to pass on their first pick and wait so they can knock down the salary commitment. It’s a horrible system, but we live in a capitalist society where those are the rules we all decided were acceptable.
I think what the Lions need to do is move the team to another city worse off than Detroit, (anywhere in Mississippi or Arkansas would suffice) but let Detroit retain the team’s history and name. Then close down shop for a few years, just to see if people really miss them. If the response for them to come back is overwhelming, then build a new stadium and hype up the team's return from exile. After selling out all the season tickets and packing the new stadium with die-hard Lions fans, the team will storm the field for their first game, and lose to the Pittsburgh Steelers 43-0.
What? Another team already did that?
If they do follow the Cleveland Browns' method of rebuilding, there would be a new team added to the roster, thus making their season one game longer. This allows the Lions to go 0-17, once again cementing themselves as the worst team in NFL history.
Dream big, boys. Dream big.
Andrew Johnson is an aspiring comic book writer and comedy blogger. He hopes to one day be funny. When not contributing to his blog, he spends time with his imaginary pet cat, Mr. Fuzzy Boots. Check out his blog at the JohnsoNation.