Former Lions offensive tackle and current ESPN analyst Lomas Brown made a startling confession in a radio interview on Friday: Brown said that he once purposely missed a block because he wanted the man he was supposed to block, Packers defensive end Sean Jones, to injure Lions quarterback Scott Mitchell.
In an interview on ESPN Radio, Brown said that in a 1994 game, he purposely whiffed on Jones so that Jones could get a clean shot on Mitchell. Sure enough, Brown got his intended result, as Mitchell was knocked out of the game.
“We were playing Green Bay in Milwaukee,” Brown said. “We were getting beat, 24-3, at that time and he just stunk up the place. He’s throwing interceptions, just everything. So I looked at Kevin Glover, our All-Pro center and I said, ‘Glove, that is it.’ I said, ‘I’m getting him out the game.’ . . . So I got the gator arms on the guy at the last minute, he got around me, he hit Scott Mitchell, he did something to his finger . . . and he came out the game. [Lions backup quarterback] Dave Krieg came in the game.”
Host Ryen Russillo expressed shock that Brown would admit such a thing, but Brown showed no remorse.
“As you can tell, I’m just not a big fan of Scott Mitchell. He’s just not on my Christmas list. He won’t be getting any Christmas presents from me this year,” Brown said.
The Detroit Free Press notes that while Brown misremembered some of the details of the game, his basic description of what happened adds up: Jones drilled Mitchell with a hit that broke a finger on Mitchell’s passing hand, and Mitchell was replaced by Krieg. As Brown correctly recalled, Mitchell was having a terrible game, but Krieg played well in relief for the rest of that game and played well for the Lions the rest of the season.
Brown seems proud of himself about being the one who caused the team to change quarterbacks, but he shouldn’t be. There’s never an excuse for a football player to step onto the field and not give his best effort, but to fail to give your best effort because you want one of your teammates to get injured is totally unacceptable. For Brown to laugh about it all these years later, as if he’s glad that his actions caused a teammate to suffer an injury, is disgraceful.
And for Brown, who is suing the NFL because he says the NFL didn’t do enough to protect players from concussions, to celebrate the fact that he once stood by and allowed an opponent to take an injury-causing free shot at a teammate, is pitiful.