Lions take issue with talk that they lack talent

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The Lions think they’re better than their 1-3 record suggests, and they’re frustrated with those who question the talent on their roster.

Unnamed league executives were quoted by Pro Football Weekly as saying that the Lions have players who aren’t as good as they think they are, and that Lions G.M. Martin Mayhew and coach Jim Schwartz are overrated. Lions center Dominic Raiola heard about that and wasn’t pleased.

That fires me up,” Raiola told the Detroit News. “If they had any [guts] they would say who they were. That’s kind of like a coward statement to me. We just have to get back to what we did last year. Talent-wise, it’s all the same. To take a shot at the Lions’ organization like that, that ain’t right.”

The Lions’ website also published an article taking issue with the negative assessment of the team, and noting that the Lions aren’t at full strength because two key players, running back Jahvid Best and safety Louis Delmas, have missed the start of the season with injuries.

But the reality is that there’s no argument anyone in the Lions’ organization can make that changes the fact that they’re 1-3. If the Lions want to change perceptions, they need to change their won-loss record, and let their play do their talking.

79 responses to “Lions take issue with talk that they lack talent

  1. Quit partying all night at Flight Club and Penthouse Club and their legs wouldn’t be so tired. Every high profile club and strip club I go to around SE Michigan it seems as if a Lion is their acting like a rock star trying to get free drinks. Lame and cheap.

  2. Lions are last years news. They will finish with 6 or 7 wins and in last place. Good thing they won it all last year…oh wait …

  3. As a long time Lions fan I wish Dominic Raiola played as good as he talks……He is worst center in the NFL , Lions have not been able to run the ball since he was named starting center. wish he would shut up and retire.

  4. So according to the Lions they are 1-3 because their 3rd down back and a safety are hurt? Seem logical…

  5. As Bill Parcells said, You are what your record is.

    Every team out there has serious injuries.

    No more excuses.

  6. ” …the Lions have players who aren’t as good as they think they are, and that Lions G.M. Martin Mayhew and coach Jim Schwartz are overrated.”
    ————————————-
    Agreed, agreed and agreed.

  7. They either have lousy talent or crappy coaching. Which one is it? I think Schnartz is waaay overrated but I think the roster is a bit overrated too.

  8. Sorry Lions, but talent and coaching are both still issues, if you’re so “fired up” change the perception on the field and win.

  9. Uhhh… take away the trick play PR for TD and KR TD against Tennessee and then a KR and PR TD the following week against the Vikings and the Lions are 3-1 instead of 1-3. It is the special teams that made this team 1-3… not any kind of “lack of talent”.

    Anyone that says the Lions are over rated because they are 1-3 just doesn’t have the intelligence or the football knowledge to see that the Special Teams group… is the cause of the current record.

  10. Talent isn’t the problem. Coaching is the problem. Last year the Lions were a bit of an unknown, now teams have film on them. Linehan’s offense is stagnant and predictable. Cunningham’s defense can’t stop anyone when it counts, all teams have to do is run wham traps on them. And how the ST coordinator has a job is anyone’s guess.
    They play predicable football with no fire and that’s the fault of the coaches.

  11. Really? Stafford, Johnson, Suh, Avril?…Pettigrew, Young, Hanson, Delmas, (yes, he’s back.) No talent?
    The Lions have talent. This is not subject to debate. But the nfl is filled with teams that have talent. Any given game’s outcome often comes down to three or four plays. Truth is, the lions haven’t made plays this year like they had last year. I think they will turn it around. Because, THEY DO HAVE TALENT. Anytime you have the best player on the field, (Johnson), and not an elite yet, but very good quarterback, and finally, a good defensive line, you will win football games.

  12. “We just have to get back to what we did last year.”

    The Lions didn’t beat a single team with a winning record last year and dating back to last season, counting their playoff game, have lost 11 of their last 17.

  13. So far this year, we’ve suffered from 1) an unbalanced offense allowing other teams to key on the pass, and 2) underperformance by the DL, especially Suh (who beats his man then overpursues past the QB, misses him, then throws a tantrum). And yes, 3) DB’s who would struggle in Morgan State reserves.

    We need to 1) give it to Mikel, 2) let our good LB’s (esp Levy) come on more blitzes to support the front 4, and 3) be patient – we had no spare money to improve the team this year, and did well to renegotiate Tulloch/Calvin etc. This year will be a down period on a steadily improving win column

  14. Stafford is a solid QB, but he’s as fragile as crystal. Suh came into the league with a bang, but he’s been whimpering ever since. Schwartz is a tool.

    Megatron is really the only “must-have” guy on this team (although you could make a case for Avril too).

  15. Funny that getting characterized as lacking talent is what fires these guys up. As if losing while having lots of talent is somehow way better.

  16. I agree with this assessment. When the Eagles shut down Megatron with double and triple teams, there is no other weapon on offense to make them pay. Pettigrew is a drop machine. Their secondary is awful. Lions go to 1-4 even with an extra week of rest.

  17. Wanna the criticism to stop? Start playing up to your talent. It’s just that simple.

    Stop whinning and start winning. Funny how that works!

    My Lions are as good as their record shows… for now.

    No pass rush.
    No running game.
    Easy secondary.

    Go LIONS… I hope..

  18. The problem with the Lions is their attitude (case in point: this article) and lack of discipline. Their head coach has a Napolean complex and a short fuse to go with it, and his attitude problem has trickled down to his players… which has been evident for 2-3 years now to anyone who’s watched a Lions game.

  19. I disagree that Schwartz is overrated.
    I’m not sure anyone thought he was very good in the first place.
    Aside from throwing little girl tantrums. He’s pretty good at that.

  20. Johnb21 says:
    Oct 9, 2012 7:13 PM
    Uhhh… take away the trick play PR for TD and KR TD against Tennessee and then a KR and PR TD the following week against the Vikings and the Lions are 3-1 instead of 1-3. It is the special teams that made this team 1-3… not any kind of “lack of talent”.
    _____________________________
    Are you sure there’s nothing else you wanna “take away” to get them to your mythical 3-1? Just those four long scoring plays. In 2 games.

  21. When the heck did it become not ok to bash the Lions? Scott Mitchell wants his dignity back. Obviously the players are not old enough to know that the Lions will always be mired in mediocrity to everyone outside of Detroit.

  22. It’s pretty cowardly for league execs to make a statement for publication, but hide behind anonymity.

    Our special teams played horrifically and cost us 2 games. That’s hardly grounds to throw the entire team under the bus.

    It’s still pretty early in the year to make proclamations about who is going to the playoffs and who isn’t.

    Next 3 games will all be interesting. We have the Eagles and the Bears on the road, and Seahawks at home. I think we can win all 3, but the biggest test will be Chicago who have come out much stronger than anyone expected – especially with Cutler acting like such a dope.

    If we end this stretch 1-6, you’re all free to go back to ripping on us like we’re Cleveland-lite.

  23. The Lions have talent!! But they are not playing as unit! It’s not just special teams! because if that was the case the offence would be keeping them in games. Maybe they belived to much of the hype!! about how good they really were?

  24. Shouldn’t the Lions players be “fired up” about losing 3 out of 4 games? But, no…they’re “fired up” because someone said mean things about them. Claiming you’d be 3-1 if a few plays had gone differently is LAME. Your team is 1-3 because they didn’t make enough plays to win the games. Plain and simple. Blaming your record on players being hurt is also lame. Most teams have important players get injured. Good teams and their coaching staff find ways to win.

  25. expertop says:
    Oct 9, 2012 7:23 PM
    Funny that getting characterized as lacking talent is what fires these guys up. As if losing while having lots of talent is somehow way better.
    ——
    Great comment.

  26. They lack heart.

    If some of their best players started playing on special teams it would show they gave a damn about winning.

  27. It’s really pretty simple. Score more points,
    play better defense, quit turning the ball over, improve on special teams, and stop worrying about what the media says.
    If the Lions feel disrespected its because they have not earned it! As a fan, I’m getting tired of all the excuses that come week after week from the motor city!

  28. Schwartz – scumbag coach that’ll be gone in two years
    Suh – overrated dirty player good for cheap shots and little else
    Stafford – injury prone goof who plays for stats not wins

    Johnson is this team’s only real bright spot This is why you build a real team that plays together and wins together instead of drafting a bunch of loudmouth “individual” players.

  29. It’s called the Madden Curse, next time don’t lobby for one of your players to be on the cover of that game if you want your team to succeed.

  30. The lions have talented players. Too bad their talent is breaking the law and getting arrested.

  31. Want to stop the critics? Learn some new strategies pre-snap. Linehan doesn’t identify coverages so we can’t make calls to exploit them. How do Manning and Brady do it? Here’s my observations:

    Every defense this year has played a base cover 2 zone or cover 2 man. Want to get open? Put someone in motion. If a secondary defender follows him through the motion, it is man coverage. If he sits tight, it’s a soft zone (because teams don’t crowd the box when you can’t run).

    If the motion man shows zone, hit a quick slant or wheel route across the middle (cough*Broyles, Burleson*cough) because there will be some fat gaps if defenders are sitting tight and the safeties are being stretched with CJ and Young. Yes, I’ll even include Brandon “teflon hands” Pettigrew in this portion…

    If it’s man, hit CJ deep in double coverage (I’d give him the better odds to come up with it or a PI all day) or Young if CJ draws more of the secondary his way.

    Get some pre-snap reads to give you a leg up and stop letting the defense dictate offensive strategy.

  32. Listen Lions fans. I’ve been a Saints fan my entire life. And, I remember when Jim Mora first took the Saints to the playoffs. The next year the Saints missed the playoffs. This isn’t that uncommon. Most teams after they make playoffs for the first time in a long time have a hangover the next year. Don’t panic. You’ve have enough talent. The problem is you’re considered to be a good team, so other teams preperation is more intense and thier effort is a litter better then it was against you last year. That being said, I think you could use a big running back and if possible a shut down corner. Other than that, all you need is just one more year and you’ll be fine

  33. Wow, im amazed by how many people think they are so cool because they can come on the internet and trash talk about the Lions. Thats ALL pft readers do is trash talk. Trash talk Stafford. Trash talk Calvin. Suh. Fairley. Schwartz. These guys have no idea about any other team besides the one they root for. Its obvious by reading their dumb comments. “Calvin isnt good”….”Stafford isnt good” Unbelieveable. Get a dang hobby and quit your stupid trash talk. Or actually LEARN about the game instead of just reading box scores.

  34. And then there is the issue that nobody wants to play special teams, and they gave up FOUR touchdowns on special teams in two weeks. For the first time since 1940. So maybe get the special teams to not crush the morale of the team and things will get better. Oh, and better players.

  35. PLEASE… the Lions was weak last season an the only reason they made the playoffs was because Cutler an Forte was hurt an everybody knows that.

  36. The anonymous GM was probably Martin Mayhew. Think about it. Of course the comments here also indicate some serious dimly lit opinions… love to hate… yep… and clearly the Lions have some things to work on… so do the Packers, Patriots, Steelers, Eagles, Bears… just about every team not named the Texans.

  37. @delions00

    Nice try, good ideas. But we’re talking about an OC who apparently thinks an occasional Burleson end around is ‘mixing it up.’

  38. They do let the play do the talking. The Lions don’t go bragging about themselves or talking smack about other teams. That “gm” really is a cowardly little you know what. You got something to say? Be a man and put your name on it.

  39. Lions are not elite like the Steelers….they’re more like a rich man’s Bills….

    Go Steelers! *WOOT WOOT*

    hit the like button! I’m a fan w/ a keen eye and sharp wit.

  40. Johnb21 says: Oct 9, 2012 7:13 PM

    Uhhh… take away the trick play PR for TD and KR TD against Tennessee and then a KR and PR TD the following week against the Vikings and the Lions are 3-1 instead of 1-3. It is the special teams that made this team 1-3… not any kind of “lack of talent”.

    Anyone that says the Lions are over rated because they are 1-3 just doesn’t have the intelligence or the football knowledge to see that the Special Teams group… is the cause of the current record.++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Unfortunately for you and other Lions fans teams have to play all three phases to win (at least most of the time) in the NFL. Having poor special teams is also usually a reflection of poor depth.

    Either way your team needs to fix the special teams or you’re going to be making these kind of posts week after week.

  41. @ghjjf

    The madden curse is why the lions are off to a bad start?…good news! Thats why,your right..well heres to a 12-4 season next year because ya know.. the madden curse will have expired!…smh.

  42. takingbovadasmoney says:Oct 9, 2012 6:58 PM

    Quit partying all night at Flight Club and Penthouse Club and their legs wouldn’t be so tired. Every high profile club and strip club I go to around SE Michigan it seems as if a Lion is their acting like a rock star trying to get free drinks. Lame and cheap.
    ____________________

    Sure, that sounds believable. I bet you had to google “strip clubs” on your mom’s computer to come up with those names.

  43. Too bad that the lions feel the need to say the reason they suck is because two players are hurt. Which team doesn’t have injuries. Hell, green bay is all banged up but they don’t post excuses on their website and have more wins.

  44. It’s not talent that is missing, it’s discipline.

    They have none.

    And guess what Lions band-wagoners…

    They have already topped out.

    So time to put your other loser team gear back on

  45. I have a hard time believing a GM with any class would hide behind “Pro Football Weekly” and spew such a personal vendetta. It’s almost hard to take seriously, which is why MDS left out all the obviously over the top trash talk…

    My guess is that there was no rival GM who said this and that it’s most likely made-up by the author.

  46. draculalambert says: Oct 9, 2012 10:39 PM

    Lions are not elite like the Steelers….they’re more like a rich man’s Bills….

    Go Steelers! *WOOT WOOT*

    hit the like button! I’m a fan w/ a keen eye and sharp wit.
    —————————-
    Sorry, but the Steelers are hardly elite this season.

  47. jimmylions says:

    “Next 3 games will all be interesting. We have the Eagles and the Bears on the road, and Seahawks at home. I think we can win all 3, but the biggest test will be Chicago who have come out much stronger than anyone expected – especially with Cutler acting like such a dope. ”

    The way Cutler has been acting is not relevant, and I disagree with your assessment anyway…The way he has been playing is what counts, and that – plus our defense – is what should decide the game on Oct. 22.

  48. The Lions are who we thought they were…Heck, even the Packers are who we thought the Lions were.

  49. I’m from michigan , and a lions fan… With that said I agree the lions are over – rated. Sorry lion fans out there , I was born in 87 and never saw a ” good ” lions team until last year and with all the pain and suffering this garbage organization has produced, I will not be riding that band wagon like so many other lion ” fans ” because of one good year. U don’t trust stafford, they have no running game and so far their special teams has been a complete and utter joke

  50. Let’s see here, their best player was on the Madden cover which is always a great career move (ask Shaun Alexander), their “star” defensive tackle is looking more and more like a one hit wonder, their other “star” defensive tackle WAS a one hit wonder… at Auburn, their QB is made of glass, their OL consists of 5 turnstyles, their secondary couldn’t cover division 2 NCAA players, and their coach is a tool.

    I would say this team is overrated, but this is the Lions we are talking about here. Not sure they earned the overrated title.

  51. chi01town says:
    Oct 9, 2012 9:27 PM
    PLEASE… the Lions was weak last season an the only reason they made the playoffs was because Cutler an Forte was hurt an everybody knows that.

    _______________________

    You mean every BEARS fan knows that.

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