The next three years are absolutely crucial for general manager Bob Quinn and head coach Matt Patricia. The team took over a mediocre Detroit Lions team last year and quickly turned them into a bottom-10 team.
That has likely shortened their leash on the franchise and their plans for a full culture change. If Martha Ford doesn’t see results in the next couple years, both of their jobs will undoubtedly be on the line. She didn’t hesitate to move on from Martin Mayhew midseason a few years ago.
But a panel of three ESPN analysts—Louis Riddick, Kevin Seifer and Field Yates—aren’t very optimistic about their ability to turn it around that quickly. On Tuesday, ESPN released what they’re calling “NFL Future Power Rankings” (Insider required) projecting how each team will perform in the next three years. Rankings were based on five different criteria: quarterback, rest of the roster, draft, front office and coaching.
Based on those rankings, the Lions came in all the way at 21st. The rankings were especially unfavorable to Patricia, who came in at 26th among coaching rankings. Seifert was brutal in his criticism of the Lions head coach.
“This ranking could improve if Detroit’s next coach is better than Patricia,” Seifert wrote.
- Tuesday was Barry Sanders’ 51st birthday, and the internet celebrated his fantastic career. First, there were the highlights:
- Then there was the SB Nation piece about how Sanders’ 1988 season with Oklahoma State is the greatest season in football history (originally from December 8). Additionally, SB Nation’s Sam Eggleston explains why Sanders was the greatest running back of all time.
- Barry Sanders Jr. also took to Twitter to honor his dad:
- Finally, Deadspin writer Albert Burneko believes Sanders was the “coolest football player who ever lived.”
- In non-Barry Sanders news, MMQB’s Andy Benoit thinks more people should know about Quandre Diggs:
- Last week, the NFL said goodbye to Glover Quin. On Tuesday, the league lost another Lions legend: