Rod Wood: Matt Patricia, Bob Quinn showed Lions the culture they didn’t want

Washington Football Team v Detroit Lions
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Bob Quinn lasted five seasons as the Lions’ General Manager. His undoing came when he fired Jim Caldwell after back-to-back, 9-7 seasons and hired former Patriots’ co-worker Matt Patricia.

The Lions now are rebuilding with new General Manager Brad Holmes and new head coach Dan Campbell.

Current and former Lions’ players publicly lauded the dismissals of Quinn and Patricia, prompting a reporter to ask Lions president Rod Wood if things had grown “toxic” under the former administration.

“I’m not going to comment on the perception of the prior culture and whatever it’s labeled,” Wood said, via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press. “I just know that going through that experience informed us on what the culture we wanted, I’ll put it that way, and how we pursued the candidates that we ended up hiring for our head coach and General Manager.”

The Lions also promoted Mike Disner to senior vice president of football and business administration and hired Chris Spielman as special assistant to the chairman and president this offseason. The new hierarchy is working as planned, Wood said.

“I can tell you having sat in meetings during free agency and sat in periodically in some of the draft meetings, everything that we described that we wanted is what’s happening,” Wood said. “There’s great collaboration; there’s great participation. Everybody’s voice is being heard, and I think the results so far of what we’ve done and the results of what will come later on will prove that point out.”

The Lions have not won a playoff game since 1991, going 0-8 in eight postseason appearances since. They last made the playoffs in 2016.

14 responses to “Rod Wood: Matt Patricia, Bob Quinn showed Lions the culture they didn’t want

  1. The culture turned out to be Tom Brady, or at least the winning component to the culture. That’s why all the coaches and GM’s who left New England never won. Then Tom goes to a Tampa Bay team that hadn’t won a playoff game in 18 years, and wins the super bowl. Or maybe Tampa Bay just happened to figure out culture the same day Tommy joined the team. And then New England’s playoff run suddenly ended at the same time, despite the GOAT coach still being there. All those Patriots coaches developed a bad attitude, and tried selling it to us as a “culture”. What a crock. The fact that all their coaches acted like complete jerks was their real culture. The winning was all Brady.

  2. Bob Quinn was a big joke. Unbelievably. Matt Patricia was an even bigger joke. Quinn fired a successful and winning coach just because. Then Patricia came into a winning program and denigrated it, saying the team’s talent was lacking. Most of those players had been to the playoffs 2 of the last 3 years. Quinn & Patricia, no playoffs in 4 years.

  3. Guys like Wood have the best jobs ever. They focus on the ‘business’ which in the NFL pretty much runs itself. TV, tickets, merchandise, takes care of itself. He side steps the football side of things, so if they win, hey he gets a ring and is the President of a Super Bowl team. If they suck, he blames the culture and fires people (who he hired to begin with). Bloody brilliant if you ask me.

  4. I for one am shocked that Belichick and proteges` heavy handed style was universally rejected the moment Brady called BS and walked away from it.

  5. Wow they haven’t won a playoff game in 30 years. That’s brutal.

  6. Wow as a Lions fan this paints an even bleaker picture of the Quinn & Patricia period, I will not attach Jim Caldwell to the dumpster fire he did a pretty good job and deserved to keep his job. But it sounds like just reading between the lines that now it’s a collaborative, team oriented, group effort towards a common goal. Which implies with no imagination that Quinn was bad at his job and sought no advice or consensus and Patricia did similarly. Why if this was such an issue such a losing proposition only getting worse before their eyes did Ownership give that last year and say hey you better win? I mean if the whole set up soup to nuts was bad why give the chance of a turnaround and waste get another year? A new GM might’ve not wasted his 1st rounder and might’ve secured the teams QB of the future, not take the CB he thought was most game ready who proved to be anything but. Like most of his picks and transactions it didn’t work out. So why cut them another year of slack? This just reveals that all the way to the top my Lions have NO idea what they are doing. Rant over. Just my opinion

  7. The Patriot way only works if you have an all time great quarterback. The Belicheat coaching tree is a giant dumpster fire.

  8. In life it comes down to wins and losses. Everything seems to be overlooked and forgiven as long as you win. Lose, and you’re out.

  9. The President of the Detroit Lions is busy trashing the previous regime (Bob Quinn/Matt Patricia)? Fun fact: Rod Wood was hired as Team President a year before Quinn came aboard and two years before Patricia joined. So proud that Wood finally summoned the courage to trash Quinn and Patricia a few months after they left, however deserved.

    I take offense to this. “Culture” has become a dog whistle in American business, wielded to crush and distance as much as inspire. Here is what Detroit currently has in its front office: A “meathead” coach with a penchant for cannibal imagery (Dan Campbell); a neophyte GM long on potential and short on operational experience (Brad Holmes); an ambitious and decorated former general manager itching for another shot as Holmes’ right-hand (John Dorsey); a former player orbiting everything with lots of time and minimal responsibilities (Chris Spielman); and an offensive coordinator long on character and short on clock management skills (Anthony Lynn). They’re also still employing Bob Quinn’s long-time friend, Mike Disner, who heads up football administration. What’s worse, Disner, Holmes, and Campbell report separately to Wood…and Spielman reports directly to ownership. Structure enforces culture. When things go south, you can expect the blame to fly in Detroit. This set-up is a business case for how not to organize an operation.

  10. I learned a long time ago that you never try to make yourself look good by trying to make someone else look bad. Ron Wood your off to a bad start.

  11. The difference is night and day.

    The openness, transparency and being honest with the fans is so refreshing. Also Sheila getting more involved, but not overly so, is a big plus. For far too long, the owners just left it to others, but she has made a concerted effort to take more accountability and get the fans onside, show they actually care.

  12. Here is a culture equation. Bill Belichick minus Tom Brady equals Matt Patricia.

  13. The players didn’t like the system because it was too hard, and they wouldn’t buy in. Now they can all be happy…and continue to lose. Another one of the GOAT HCs was hard to play for too. It might not have been fun, but they almost always won. Think they named a trophy after him. We’ll see how it goes in happytown now. Make no mistake, the Patriots Culture was not all about Brady. The hard coaching goes back to Parcells, at least. When Brady was begging for playing time at Michigan. Yes, the Pats had 1 bad yr, which was planned, and Brady won the SBowl with a loaded team that needed a couple more pieces. I’m happy for him. People that said The Pats success was about Brady are in for a rude awakening.

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