Most coaches never get to a lame duck season, either ending up fired or extended before getting to the final year of a contract.
But Lions coach Jim Caldwell is handling it the way he seemingly handles everything — evenly.
“We’re not going to discuss anything dealing with the contracts,” Caldwell said, via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press. “I mean, that doesn’t matter. It really doesn’t.”
To many, it would.
Caldwell’s entering he final year of the four-year deal he signed in 2014, and he’s gone to the playoffs two of his three seasons. But he’s also been joined by a new General Manager who didn’t hire him, and the 27-21 record is balanced by the lack of a playoff win.
G.M. Bob Quinn would only say he had “nothing to announce,” and Caldwell remained unfazed about the lack of security that most coaches see as a necessity, especially considered the relatively successful run he’s enjoyed.
“It’s like I said before, I’m not concerned with anything other than how we get our team better, plain and simple,” Caldwell said. “Contract talks and all these kind of things get only about two or three people excited, the two or three [reporters] sitting at this table. But other than that, it doesn’t matter to people. We’re focusing on our team and how we can get it better. . . .
“I’m not going to confirm or deny anything in that regard, but I can just tell you this, that, when I was in college, it was every year, because that’s all you had was a one-year contract, so it’s normal for me, in that regard. But I’m not saying either way. But you asked me have I worked on a one-year deal before, numerous times.”
Caldwell’s unflappable manner isn’t for everyone, but he’s also created something approaching stability there. Which in Detroit, can’t be taken for granted.