Bonehead play gets Stefan Logan benched as Lions’ return man


When Lions return man Stefan Logan fielded a kick at the 4-yard line on Saturday against the Falcons, he did something extraordinarily stupid: He took a knee and downed it. At the 4-yard line.

TV cameras caught Lions coach Jim Schwartz calling that, “the f–king stupidest thing I’ve ever seen.” Now Logan has been benched.

I won’t be [returning kicks] this Sunday,” Logan confirmed today. “I’m mad, but at the same time there’s nothing I can do about that. That’s coach’s decision. I blame myself. I’m not blaming the coaches, I blame myself. I’m my worst critic.”

Logan didn’t have much of an explanation for why he downed the ball.

“It was a messed up play by me and I have to live with it and move on from it. It’s just a bad play by me and I have to pay the consequences and I have to live with it. I just have to work through it and just be ready for whenever your opportunity comes back up,” Logan said.

Schwartz said that if Logan can’t be trusted not to down the ball at the 4-yard line, then he can’t be trusted to return kicks.

“Part of a returner’s job is to know where he is on the field. Saying ‘I didn’t know where I was, I thought I was in the end zone,’ is not a valid excuse. Your job as a returner is to know where you are on the field, particularly after we had gotten a safety,” Schwartz said.

Frankly, Schwartz’s decision to bench Logan is long overdue, regardless of his bonehead play last week. Logan is dead last in the NFL with a 21.3-yard kickoff return average and 16th with a 9.1-yard punt return average, and he has six fumbles this season.

Still, Logan is confident in himself going forward.

“Things happen. I didn’t lose the game,” Logan said. “The game was already over. So it’s not like I lost the game for us, but you can look at it however you want to look at it. We’ve all struggled as a team so far. Not just one individual. I’m like the quarterback on special teams. When the camera goes on special teams it comes straight to me so if anything happens on special teams as far as muffing a punt or a guy running into me or something like that it’s going to be my fault because the light is on me.”

The reality is that Logan is wrong when he says the game was over. It wasn’t over. The Lions were losing by 13 points with 1:21 remaining at the time of Logan’s blunder, so they certainly weren’t in good shape, but teams have come back from being down 13 with 1:21 remaining and gone on to win. In fact, just this season the Lions came back to force overtime after trailing the Titans by more than 13 with less than 1:21 remaining. In that game, Logan fielded a kick with the Lions down by 14 with 1:16 remaining. Fortunately for the Lions, when Logan downed that kick he really was in the end zone. (Apparently Logan thought at the time that the game was over, but his teammates still fought their way back into it.)

Logan’s “the game was already over” statement doesn’t speak well for his competitiveness, but Logan said he still expects to be an NFL return man in 2013.

“I’ll just keep moving forward whether it’s with Detroit or another team,” he said.

Given Schwartz’s comments about Logan, it will probably not be with Detroit.

51 responses to “Bonehead play gets Stefan Logan benched as Lions’ return man

  1. I never in my life thought I would see a Lion do something dumber than Dan Orlovsky running out the back of the endzone… and then this happened. You are absolutely correct that this move was long overdue and that Logan is dead wrong about the game being over

  2. Well….if they were down 13 with a minute or so left, their best chance at making that comeback was by Logan returning the punt instead of letting it bounce, roll around, and let more time tick off. Once he camped out under it, he probably saw defenders bearing down like all returners do and his instinct was to waive fair catch. I’m not gonna kill him for that. He’s one of the last guys who should be benched on that poor excuse for a team.

  3. I’ve seen dumber plays, but admittedly not many.

    The worst I’ve seen on a kick was by Barry Foster (remember him?) when he was a rookie for the Steelers. They were playing at San Francisco, the Niners kicked off late in the game after yet another score in a game that wasn’t close, and Foster just let the ball roll dead inside the 10. On a kickoff. Not a punt. You can guess the rest.

  4. I chuckled when I saw him take a knee… and nearly fell out of my chair when I read Schwartz lips. “That was the stupidest kucf-ing play I’ve seen in my life.”

  5. Compare that with Cobb making sure he had one foot in and one foot out when he caught the kickoff to get the ball at the 40.

    Cobb and McCarthy say he was coached to do that, I’m guessing Logan wasn’t coached much.

  6. No question, dumb play. But what’s even dumber is the head coach calling out a player like that in public…isn’t this the same coach that threw a challenge flag on a scoring play that would have been reversed if he hadn’t, you know, thrown the freaking challenge flag? He’s in no position to be calling out anyone.

  7. LOL I didn’t think it was stupid…he downed the ball at the 4 years line to give Calvin Johnson a better spot to beast the yardage record! like when you play tecmo super bowl and you run it back to the 1 yard line so Bo Jackson can score a 99 yard touchdown. well played Logan…well played!

  8. If memory serves this happened to Brian Mitchell once. He fielded a kickoff and took a knee but had a momentary lapse of awareness as to where on the field he was.

  9. Better than Barry Foster’s bonehead kick off return for the Steelers against the Niners about 20 years ago.

  10. To justintuckrule: you are obviously been fortunate enough to not watch many Lion games this year because, in fact, Logan was one of the first that needed to be benched. Logan has three gears, kneel, fair catch and run sideways and in that order. After his first year with the Lions, when he signed an extension, Logan became increasingly clueless and useless as a kr On a team rife with players boasting low football IQs, Logan managed to regularly distinguish himself, pairing himself with Titus Young to form football’s version of dumb and dumber. Next year, they will both be someone else’s problem.

  11. Based on his comments, he most likely wont be with the Lions or any other team. If you are dead last in what you claim you do best, your prospects for employment dont look too good.

  12. This is pretty much the Lions style…Millen? Not fired until he had officially created the absolute worst team in history (0-16). Now Logan, not benched until the stupidest play ever. I give them credit for their loyalty, but it’s only lead to the worst franchise in the league. Because of that loyalty, Schwartz will get another year, but he doesn’t deserve it!

  13. You know the HC is feeling the heat when he scapegoats a returner. The Loins are a lost cause as long as Schwartz is in town. —LOLions.

  14. tdrundmc says:Dec 27, 2012 7:50 PM

    Logan should have been released about 8 weeks ago. He’s awful. Why is he still on the team?
    You answered your own auestion. It’s because he’s awful and it’s the Lions.

  15. This falls on Schwartz. Logan is trying his best. His best sucks. Schwartz should have recognized this and benched him sooner. He should have been benched after the regular season game against the saints last year for the boneheaded personal foul he committed. Screw the contract extension. Fire Schwartz and bring in Coach Bill Cowher.

  16. While watching the game, my first thought when seeing Logan down the ball was that there must be some obscure rule about downing the ball on free kicks. My brain wouldn’t process that a guy who has two jobs on the team, to return kicks and return punts, would just down the ball on the 4 for no reason.

  17. this seems quite in line with the Jim Schwartz era… good players not knowing what to do or when to do it… I feel bad for Lion’s fans… they went from a GM who couldn’t get the talent to a coach who can’t get talent on the same page and playing together…
    as a Packer “owner” I love to see this, but I can’t help but feel for Lion’s fan… after all I’ve been a Packer fan even thru the 70’s and 80’s….

  18. If he’s still under contract, maybe they can get a beer can and a sack of walnuts in a trade with someone.
    I’m guessing he’ll just be cut. And never hear of again.

  19. For those that are backing up Logan, you obviously don’t watch very much Lions football. Logan has been royally bad. As in one of the worst return men I have ever seen in the NFL. The extra disappointing part is that for the last couple years he was actually pretty good but this year, awful doesn’t even begin to describe his play.

  20. Day late and a dollar short on this one. He should have been released after last year’s pathetic showing. That’s Schwartz though, he sticks with guys way too long. There are about 6 other starters that shouldn’t even be on the field, but he refuses to ever bench anyone for not performing. Even when there are younger, more talented, high draft picks on the bench that should be starting every week. He just keeps putting the same garbage team out there week after week. It’s inconceivable how this guy retains his job, but his contract runs through 2015, so he’ll be here until 2015, because everyone else in the organization is blind to his incompetence.

  21. Hard to argue with any Jim Schwartz decision. He’s clearly pushed all the right buttons during this magical season.

  22. Does anyone think Schwartz or any coach deserves to be retained as head coach when he ends the season with most likely 8 straight loses?

  23. It was a brain fart.

    They are unexplainable, and they happen to almost all athletes at some point. Most of the time, the athlete is lucky and it doesn’t occur while they are the focal point of the action.

    I’ve played/coached/refereed rugby for over 25 years. About 5 years ago, I threw a textbook football block on a guy about to tackle a team mate of mine.

    There is no blocking in rugby.

    Brain fart. Happens to the best of us.

  24. The fact that Schwartz impulsively said that on camera is just more proof of the dunce he is. Do you ever see any other successful coach act like this bozo? I wish Harbaugh would shake him around with a normal human handshake and nudge him to the side with a simple pat on the back like the baby he is again. Fire this loser!

  25. Schwartz should be benched to his couch at home and never step foot on a field again.

  26. Games since last TD return? 43, his only one in 214 opportunities as Lion

    Fumbles in 48 games as a Lion- 16
    100+ return yard games as a Lion-10

    Bonehead plays over and over, more fumbles than 100 yard games, terrible vision, no burst, terrible fair catch decisions…and a jackass.

    I blame Schwartzie for playing this guy that long. When they traded for Mike Thomas in week 8 I thought it was over for fumblebumblelogan….nope.


  27. Lions bonehead play ??? You know, there was an offensive lineman there once that actually purposely let a defensive lineman get by him to sack the quarterback. Can you imagine that ? Talk about bonehead.

  28. I have watched pretty much every lions game that Logan has played…and I think he has returned one kick past the 50 yard line…and the lions get a ton of kickoffs…

  29. VERY close… but not the ‘stupidest’ play I’ve seen.

    Leon Lett… Dallas Cowboys… in the sleet/snow.
    That one’s still #1 in my book – by FAR.

  30. Logan should have been gone before LAST season. He’s strictly a return specialist, yet he is probably the worst returner in the league. He offers no other attributes to the team. He very well might be the worst player in the NFL.

  31. This football team is poorly coached from it’s “throw the ball the Calvin Johnson” offense, to it’s “Let’s hope our defensive line [Suh] rushes the passer to cover our horrible non-tackling secondary” defense, and lastly this non-sense on special teams.

    Very talented roster. Poorly coached. When your coach doesn’t even have a firm grasp on the rulebook, you know it’s bad.

  32. Bonehead plays are usually the result of poor coaching. Great teams don’t make those mistakes. That seems to happen all the time with the Detroit Lions. You do the math. As a fan of a rival NFC North team, I hope they give Schwartz a 10 yr. extension.

  33. Don’t worry kid. Matt Millen was the architect of a 0-16 team and gives advice on what football team should do better as a team on tv.

  34. And we thought Suh was the stupidest player on the Lions.

    There is a whole lotta stupid in Detroit.

  35. Logan may not be the best return man statistically for the Lions but Jim Schwartz gets the stupidest play in football. Logan just made a mistake, Jim Schwartz threw a flag to challenge a touchdown in the Houston Texans game that cost in 15 yards for a touchdown and the game consequently. He has no room to call anybody stupid.

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