On Monday, Rob Parker of the Detroit News attempted to apologize in a column for his over-the-line (in our view) question to Lions coach Rod Marinelli.  (Parker asked Marinelli if he wished his daughter had married a better defensive coordinator.)
Parker also has apologized via a spot on ESPN, where he apparently does a regular thing on ESPN2’s First Take.  (We didn’t know about that because, like most of the free world, we don’t watch First Take.)
But Marinelli won’t accept it.
“Anytime you attack my daughter, I’ve got a problem with that,” Marinelli said, according to Tom Kowalski of  “In a room of stink . . . and as a man and it was premeditated.  I think there was something wrong with that, yeah.”
(A “room of stink”?  Apparently, Marinelli has been to my office on the mornign after burrito night.)
Marinelli said that he hadn’t talked to Parker and that he has no desire to do so.
As to Parker’s column containing the apology, Marinelli said, “I didn’t read it, but I was told a little bit about it.  I don’t accept anything.  There are so many times people will say . . . I had an assistant coach [Jim Colletto] one time make a remark with you guys that he didn’t want to embarrass a player [Drew Stanton], did he take that remark back?  Would you guys let him?  No, you went from our practice field and ran to the locker room and put a microphone in front of the player — and [the coach] didn’t mean it that way.
“Do you remember that?  To me, this is worse.  Because his intent was to stir me up which is never going to happen.  I can shoulder anything you bring.  Easy.  I can shoulder anything you bring.”
So why didn’t Marinelli respond to the question?
“I just don’t think that’s the right stage for that,” Marinelli said.  “To me, it’s not.  It’s the wrong stage for the game of football and for me to even react to something like that, on a stage about football — it’s a kid’s game, it’s for the kids.  It’s wrong.”


  1. So I guess this would kind of refute Parker’s assertion that he and Marinelli always joke about this subject, huh?

  2. Man’s game, Rod Marinelli.
    I respect this guy more and more each day. Say what you want about Millen and the players, but they are playing hard for Marinelli. As Tony Dungy said, Marinelli teaches the same things Dungy does, he just doesn’t have the players.

  3. i live outside daytwa and i like marinelli. he is under pressure and i dont see detroit ownership saying they will keep him, altho they apparently will keep the remaining lunkheads over rod.
    parker should be put to reporting on the canadian curling circuit.

  4. Good for Marinelli. Questions like that have no business being asked, let alone dignified with a response. Maybe Marinelli should have asked Parker if his parents had any children that weren’t douche bags.

  5. Rossy P,
    if you think the Lions are struggling because of Marinelli, you must be living under a rock. The Lions have crap personnel because of years of ineptitude from Matt Millen, the GM.
    Blaming Detroit’s lack of production on Marinelli is like giving a construction company rotted wood, watered down cement, and paper mache and then blaming him because the house crumbles apart.

  6. Good for you Marinelli.
    I emailed Jonathan Wolman, Editor and Publisher of the Detroit News demanding Rob Parker’s immediate firing.
    Mr. Wolman’s email address is if you’re interested.

  7. These douchebag reporters are allowed to get away with it because of their corporate management…that’s all it is. Korny pulled some of this same crap, albeit not face-to-face with Crennel, last week and it was even worse.
    Yellow Journalism, thy name is ESPN. There are just some seriously effed up people working there.
    TK: imagine being Romeo Crennel and having to see reports on television and even in newspapers, one day they’re giving the job
    away the job to Bill Cowher, another day they’ve given it away to Marty Schottenheimer, that’s what you have to go through every single day of your life.
    RJ: I spoke to Marty Schottenheimer, he spoke to no one in the Browns organization, so who starts the rumors Tony?
    TK: Not me.
    Play goes on…
    TK in voice over of images of BC and MS…
    “These are the people that they say Cleveland wants. Bill Cowher played for them, was an Asst. coach for them, Marty Schottenheimer was the HC, almost got them to the SB, people in cleveland say Cowher is the main guy thoogh, and Cowher is going to be bid up and bid up and bid up because there is (sic) a lot of teams in this league that would offer an open checkbook to Bill Cowher, he seems to be the number one choice, no contact is made, yet.”
    RJ: I ask the question…WHO IS **THEY**.
    TK: Writers…and and
    RJ: You’re…
    TK: And, and, and it doesn’t just come out of thin air, you talk to people, you know, you do it this way, you say, “is there somebody out there you would want as a member of the staff, who would it be?” and somebody will put that name out there, it’s a natural name, Cowher…I mean, one of the things that you would want about Bill Cowher, is not only did he recently win a SB, but that he understands this division, he played in Cleveland, coached in Cleveland, and if anybody would know how to beat Pittsburgh, which you mentioned Mike, that’s the bugaboo for Romeo Crennel, couldn’t beat them at all, it would certainly be Cowher,
    RJ: Tony, I understand where you’re coming from but Romeo Crennel right now is the head coach…
    TK: YES
    RJ: You start throwing out names like Bill Cowher, Marty Schottenheimer…**THEY SAID**….Bill Cowher and Marty
    Schottenheimer have too much respect for Romeo Crennel to say “OH YEAH, we’re interested in that job.”
    RJ: To me, I don’t know who these **THEY** are. It’s clear Lerner said “we’d evaluate this at the end of the season…and everyone JUMPS to that conclusion.
    TK: That’s how sportswriting works, that’s how the media works.
    RJ: I know, but I get worked up because I don’t think it’s fair…

  8. I have no idea what all the uproar is about the question, “do you wish your daughter had married a better Defensive Coordinator?” I thought it was brilliant.
    Asking that question illustrated perfectly (I thought) that that guy has no business be a Defensive Coordinator in the NFL and that the only reason he has that job is because he’s married to the daughter of a Head Coach of an NFL team.
    Seriously, what are the chances that the best candidate for the Detroit Lions Defensive Coordinator job just happens to be married to the Head Coaches daughter? It’s a clear case of nepotism and the fans in Detroit that take Lions football seriously should be outraged.
    The reporter was basically saying that the guy clearly got his job because he’s the coach’s son-in-law and everyone would be better of if his daughter had married a better coordinator, since he was getting the jog regardless.
    I think it’s laughable that Marinelli is accusing this reporter of ‘attacking my daughter’. He’s lucky to be getting all this sympathy in my opinion. I mean HELLO, the guy hired his son-in-law to the Def Coordinator of an NFL team that he’s the Head Coach of and that team has the WORST Defense in the League. He should be savaged for that.

  9. I feel for Marinelli. First, he has to deal with the crap talent that Matt Millen has given him and now he has to deal with this Bozo. I didn’t realize that Howard Stern was looking for a sports reporter. Sorry, but no professional journalist should conduct himself as Parker did yesterday. He is a joke.

  10. theres no excuse to bring a person’s family into this…even if they are 0-15. also, to blame the losing season on him when they were losing years before he arrived is BS also. has he helped to stop the losing…no. but he isnt the sole reason for the losing which is why i think he shouldnt be fired even if they lose next week. as bad as it seems, i think the lions improved offensively under marinelli since they can/do run the ball more efficiently and calvin johnson has turned into one of the best wr in football.

  11. the problem is their defense…of course youll lose if you give up 47 pts to another team…even the 07 pats offense cant stay in the game if their def is giving up 47 pts

  12. …..the rest of the story is, Rob asked Moronelli 4 times ‘why does Joe 486 points Berry still have a job’ and got 4 non-freakin-answers about ‘pad level’, ‘coal mining’, ‘it’s on me’, blah …
    if Rod were half the stand up man some make him out to be, he’d have quit 10 games ago…. but then the entire Marinelli family would be out of work, and you cannot do that to the grandkids.
    Rod seems like a decent man, but he is WAY OVER his head in Detroit.

  13. I don’t understand why everyone is so mad. The man had a point. I bet he does wish she married a better deffensive coordinator. When you hire inside the family like that you open yourself up to these kind of remarks. Get over it be a man and win a game for pete’s sake.

  14. When you say, Dr. Florio, “’room of stink’? Apparently, Marinelli has been to my office on the mornign(sic) after burrito night”, what I want to know is, is that juris doctorate humor? So tired, so old, so stupid, and to think I was once censored on this site — and for no reason — and now you give me this…as humor?
    As for Rob Parker (who?), he was now “kidding”? Again, poor humor, worse delivery, all the comic timing of Michael Richards “n-word” rant.

  15. Parker is another leonard pitts. Whatever stupidity he says or writes, he is the quintessential hire and he won’t get fired.
    And his apology means nothing.

  16. Marinelli is gaining cult status around the league. Everyone seems to love him and his players are still playing hard for him. I hope he gets another year with the Lions.

  17. Good Job Rod!! Screw this guy! As a Viking fan, Marinelli is NOT the problem in detroit. Watching the first half of yesterday’s game the defense totally gave up, and did not come to play. I hope he is given the chance to turn it around. Detroit needs to build around Calvin Johnson and Kevin Smith. From what I saw they both played a great first half. If Detroit cans Marinelli, it will be another in a long line of mistakes. Go through the tapes and get rid of the players that gave up, and find others who want to play. This is what the Vikes, did and have improved every year. Gone are guys like Fred Smoot, Dwight Smith, Marcus Robinson, Daunte Culpepper, guys who put themselves before the team. It seams like the Detroit press likes to goad Marinelli so they can get another news making sound bite. And I thought the Minnesota press was bad.

  18. I like Rod Marinelli as a person. Too bad he is lousy as a head coach so we could keep him around. Who knows? Ford Sr. said he was keeping self proclaimed “Millen Guy” Martin Mayhew and that sycophant Tom Lewand around, maybe Rod stays too. Then they can go for 0-32.
    Oh, and Parker is a scumbag.

  19. “Say what you want about Millen and the players, but they are playing hard for Marinelli.” 42-7?!?! Against the Saints? In a game to keep from setting the alltime record for losses to start a season??? Jeez, how much would the Lions lose by if they weren’t playing hard? It may not be Marinelli’s fault, these Lions suck…but, they are *not* playing hard for him.

  20. “(A “room of stink”? Apparently, Marinelli has been to my office on the mornign after burrito night.)”
    Florio: Great at breaking NFL stories, TERRIBLE sense of humor. Let’s all stick to our talents, shall we.

  21. I love Parker’s article; it basically is expressing the exact opposite of what Marinelli is really feeling, which shows that Mr. Parker is full of crap.

  22. Like I said when this first came up…. a guy making millions of dollars to TOTALLY SUCK at his job has no sense of humor about the fact that he totally sucks. Marinelli needs to follow Millen into the vat of discarded epic failures in Detroit.

  23. Marinelli is a loathsome demagogue. His team is 0-15, so rather than laughing off Parker’s little dig he goes ballistic and cynically uses it as a diversionary tactic. There was no attack on his daughter, and he knows it.
    The better question would have been whether Marinelli’s wife should have had children with a better head coach, seeing as how she couldn’t possibly have had children with a worse head coach.
    I hate people who hide behind their kids.
    Oh, woe is poor Marinelli…but not as woe as Lions’ fans who have to watch his shitty work product.

  24. obviously what parker said was wrong and he should be reprimanded, but getting to the bottom of the issue of hand, even if he is your son-in-law how can you advocate employing someone if he has consistently given up and average of 30 pts a game, if it was anybody else they would’ve been fired earlier but yet the man still has a job as defensive coordinator on this team, not to mention he still employed the same coach(different person) who drove through a Wendy’s drive thru naked, don’t give me crap about honor when you are not holding your own words to heart. that is why this team is 0-15 and will be 0-16.

  25. Really???… demanded his immediate firing??? Are you all related to Marinelli? Parker made a bad comment in an attempt at an even worse joke. He made an apology in to seperate forums which seemed relatively sincere. Its done.
    IMO, Marinelli’s refusal to accept the apology and attempt to couch Parket’s comment as an attack on his daughter, which it clearly wasn’t, makes this something along the lines of a highschool argument between girls. He is drastically overstating Parker’s intent when he made the comment so he can throw more of a hissy fit. Marinelli’s a coach in the NFL, he needs to get over it.

  26. This is the best thing that could have happened to Marinelli… The focus is on the media not the crap product that he’s putting on the field week after week. Blame the media, there’s nothing to look at over here on Ford Field folks…. It’s Rob Parker’s fault that they are 0-15….. Let’s fire him not the incompentant Father/Son in law combo actually running the team…. Only if Rob Parker was respectful to the idiots running the team everything would be so much better…. tiktok, why not email the Ford Family about how they are running two Detroit franchises into the ground???

  27. Well I guess this will distract everyone from the real bad news in Detroit:
    they are retaining the two leftover executives from the Matt Millen era in the lions front office… about a horrendous decision…the only guys that deserve to stay are Marinelli and his staff….NOT THE FRONT OFFICE

  28. Get the guy fired? Give the guy a break, he’s just doing his crappy job. It can’t be a picnic covering an 0 and 15 team.
    Also, i didn’t know soooo many people respected a loser. Rod can’t coach his way out of a paper bag. Either you win games and are a jerk, or you lose games and are respected. It scales either way, but you can’t have a respected winner.

  29. I can’t believe how hilarious you guys are. Rob Parker asked a funny question to a joke on an NFL head coach. If any of you have ever had the unpleasure of sitting through a Rod Marenilli press conference, you would know it consists of the same material week after week. He’s got the script, he’s going to stay the course…
    Again, I think the whole thing is blown out of proportion. Its not like Rob said “Rod, do you think your nappy-headed ho should’ve married a better defensive co-oridinator?”
    The Lions are the biggest laughing stock in the history of sports, not only because of the 0-15 start, but because they have been a bottom feeding franchise post Barry Sanders era. Maybe if the Lions took themselves seriously, they’d be easier to defend in a situation like this, but sorry, they are a joke, a complete joke.

  30. I think it was funny. People get offended too easily. He didn’t say anything offensive at all. Does he wish his daughter married a better D-coordinator? How is that remotely offensive? Besides, his point is correct, Barry still holds the job strictly because he is Marinelli’s son-in-law.
    Everyone needs to grow up and stop being so sensitive. Marinelli is not a “man” if he can’t accept an apology.

  31. It’s a really sad situation as a Browns fan and I see a coach of a team in a worse situation that ours, and he still has a heartbeat. Professor Klump has no passion, his team plays flat, and he just plain sucks. At least Rod has fire.
    Much like Cleveland, Detroit will suck for a long, long time. That’s just the facts.

  32. Rob Parker, Ed Werder, Jay Glazer, Pam Oliver; Enough already
    of these over the top writers, journalists, commentators etc.
    They all know what sells is to be sensational. Who knows what
    the truth is anymore. However in all fairness reporters make
    the athlete larger than life and can create a public image
    that feeds all within the sports arena…so accept what it
    is and never strike out, fumble or lose a game. Stay out of
    the arena and then you will be like the sportswriter, never
    knowing victory or defeat.

  33. You guys can defend Marinelli all you want, but I actually think it’s a legitimate question. Is his son-in-law still around because he’s related?….cause it sure as hell isn’t because his side of the ball is playing well….
    Perhaps the question could have been worded in a way that didn’t involve Marinelli’s daughter, but the point that is being missed in all of this is that this is a jab at Marinelli himself and not his daughter.
    So if Marinelli refuses to answer the question, maybe someone here will. Detroit is ranked dead last in overall defense, 26th against the pass, last against the rush, last in INT’s, and last with 484 points allowed….so you guys tell me, how is it again that Joe Barry has kept his job?
    Nepotism……that’s how.

  34. Rod Marinelli deserved EVERY comment from Rob Parker. Marinelli is a crippled Vietnam GIMP. I hate Rod Marinelli more than any coach that has ever coached the Lions. Too bad Marinelli wasn’t a MIA/POW in Vietnam.. Then he never would have been named head coach of the Lions.

  35. I’m a Lions fan. I hate Rod Marinelli. He brought in washed up former Tampa Bucs to play his version of the Tampa 2. If you are not a fan of the Lions why do you care what was said to Marinelli? Look at his track record. Does this guy deserve any respect? He’s part of the problem. His recomendations of Brian Kelly, Duane White and Dwight Smith as free agents have all FAILED!!!!! Rod Marinelli is a clueless delusional Vietnam Vet who believes he can see the invisible. This clown will NEVER coach at any level once he is fired. Marinelli 10-37 ENOUGH SAID!!!!!

  36. Marinelli is a victim of the poorest managed team in NFL…No different than any cross the line when you get personal.
    Parker needs to be terminated..hopefully the Detroit people let the paper know. That guy needs to be covering pop warner games.

  37. Rob Parker will not get fired. The question was unquestionably an attempt at humor, and Parker is too good at column writing to be removed for something this dumb and minor. The attempt at humor, like he noted, failed. And Parker was wrong for asking the question and is rightfully receiving a lot of criticism.
    But what’s with all this love for Rob Marinelli? He is an abhorrent head coach, and Parker is right in general to question the presence of Joe Barry. The talent is not 0-15 talent. There is no doubt of that. The blame falls on the coaches’ shoulders.
    Barry is Marinelli’s son-in-law! See, the Detroit Lions’ defense is WORSE than woeful. It’s embarrassingly embarrassing. If the head coach is staying on, certainly one of the coordinators ought to go. Is Barry receiving a pass because he is married to Marinelli’s daughter? That is the true question that needs to get answered.
    Marinelli will be out of a job long before Parker.

  38. As I said on an earlier post:
    “I thought it was funny as shit. I mean I like Marinelli and all, seems like a classy guy, but when you hire your son-in-law as DC of your team and defense happens to be the worst side of the ball for you should to be willing to accept stuff like this. Joe Barry hasn’t done much for the defense there and on any other team and for any other coach he likely would have been fired by now.”
    If Marinelli didn’t want family stuff brought up at work then he shouldn’t have hired his unqualified son-in-law. When you work with family, and especially in professional sports, you have to understand that you’re exposed to such criticism. Don’t blame the press at all for pointing out the pink elephant in the room (Marinelli’s inability to fire his son-in-law for a very poor job).

  39. He shouldn’t apologize. Parker’s objective was to embarrass him. Instead he looks like a giant douchebag. Good on you, Rod.

  40. Wow. I love seeing these things get blown out of proportion.
    Win a game, then you wouldn’t get stupid questions like this. Win a few more and you might get some good questions. Maybe even some praise. Don’t tell me this guy is a good coach. 2-20 something last two years. You can say he doesn’t have the talent level here if you want, but remember we were sold on these being “Rod’s Guys” also known in football circles as “Tampas Rejects”. Guess what? Didn’t work!
    And for once, can Rod simply honestly answer a question with something other than “It’s on me”, “I’m the coach”, “I’m in the meetings” …. these are not answers to the questions being asked.
    sad detroit leos fan

  41. OK, Rob Parker’s a jackass, and he said something that was stupid and unprofessional. Fine, I get that. But, can we have a little balance here? Marinelli says Parker “attacked my daughter?” He did no such thing. He attacked Marinelli for supposed (and fairly evident) nepotism, and foolishly mentioned his daughter in doing so.
    BTW, Lions fans, has Marinelli apologized to you for coaching your team to an 0-15 (soon to be 0-16) record, and a spot as the worst………ever? And, if he did, would you accept that apology?
    The bigger issue here is the train wreck the Lions are, and Marinelli’s role in that. Rob Parker’s journalistic credibility isn’t important, since it’s obvious he has little.

  42. To whom it may concern:
    I am an avid fan of the NFL and a reader of your online publication. I was shocked and angered by Mr. Parker’s questioning of Rod Marinelli (i.e. the question about his daughter marrying a better defensive coordinator). This is not a multistep disciplinary issue. Rather, your paper will either accept Mr. Parker’s less than forthcoming apologia which contains the sincerity of Dick Cheney’s grin, or you will not. Some offenses deserve no pardons, no second chances. Mr. Parker’s acerbic question was of that ilk and cannot be excused, condoned or accepted.
    Lawdog’s email to Mr. Parker’s boss

  43. Well done, Marinelli. Im starting to become a fan of this guy. Short of making Parker swallow a few teeth, this was the best way he could handle it.

  44. The main two problems with this story exist in all of sports media.
    1. Instead of being sports journalists, these idiots view themselves as “personalities” with the intent to entertain. I don’t want you to entertain me-I want you to get me facts and info in an unbiased and ethical way.
    2. You are reporting on the story, you should NOT be part of the story. These media zealots who believe it is their job to become part of the story are as bad as officials who become part of a game. A well officiated game means no one remembers the officials’ names. The same is true for a good, legit news story. The reporter should not be part of the story and once you are you must relegate yourself to columnist only reporting strictly your opinion.
    ESPooN abandoned these principles long ago and that’s why they SUCK!!

  45. this has been going on all season. idiot rob never got the rise he wanted out of marinelli. so he tried another tactic. he is simply foolish and too clever by half. (in the south, we would have said rob aint got no couth.) of course marinelli needs the focus off poor team performance… and rob sure allowed him to do that.
    (one thought is that only joe barry would take the job. think about that. everyone in the nfl knows detroit is almost talent free.)
    that being said, maybe joe barry wouldnt have a job but for rod. and it is obvious that rob parker wouldnt have his job except for being black. his apology wasnt sincere as rod knows he has been mining the same vein all year and rob lost HIS cool by pushing it too far.
    parker is the quintessential affirmative action hire, who is trying to gig someone who simply isnt like him. parker wouldnt have that job if he were white and as talent-free as he is now.
    i am rod’s side on this one, even though he isnt getting a win next week either. of course he dislikes the media; after an episode like this i dont blame him. and lets face it, regarding the team’s performance, which he has to answer for every week till next week, all he can do is go back and work hard at fixing it. hell the team laid down like a puppy this week and let the saints scratch their freakin belly.
    i bet parker hasnt asked a real football question all year. empty suit.
    next question?

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!