Welcome to the darkest timeline, Detroit Lions fans. Things are really bad right now, in case you have been under a rock and have missed the Lions’ last two games. They’ve been blown out—once at home, once to a flailing divisional rival—and they allowed 75 points.
But I’m not sure you know just how bad things could possibly be in the very near future. So I sat down and put a together list of things the Lions are going to be looking for after 2020. Make sure you’re sitting down when you read this. You might get scared.
A new general manager
Right off the bat, we know Bob Quinn isn’t long for this world. He won’t make it to 2021 in this gig. So the Lions will have to go out and find the right guy to right the ship in Detroit.
This should be a cause for concern because the last time this franchise had to conduct a general manager search, they had to hire an outside consultant recommended by the NFL. Ernie Accorsi was hired, and by some accounts, his search for a new general manager wasn’t quite thorough. With owner Sheila Ford Hamp just a few months on the job, how can one expect this search to go any smoother?
Is the league going to help the Lions again or will they go it alone? The good news is this time they have team president Rod Wood to help with the search. He’s actually done a good job in his role and will more than likely be the only surviving member of this regime. Either way, the Lions are going to be behind the eight ball on a lot of their issues because they have to start over again from the top.
New head coach
Speaking of behind the eight ball, the Lions head coaching search is going to have to come directly after they hire their new GM. We don’t know when that’s going to be. You’d have to imagine that it would be January. But if the Lions have to wait to finish their general manager hiring first, they may lose out on fan favorites like Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy.
You have to also worry that the Lions just repeat a Quinn/Patricia type thing where the GM just hires his under-qualified friend, because he’s sure they’re both the smartest men to ever exist. Kinda scary to think about, isn’t it?
New wide receiving corps
Time to really start trembling. It’s Week 9 and Bob Quinn has still not tendered Pro Bowl receiver Kenny Golladay a new contract. It’s looking like a Graham Glasgow situation all over again. There’s a very strong chance that Golladay is playing on a new team in 2021 because of all this, unless the team franchise tags him this offseason. That’s a move that always makes players happy and ends well every time.
Golladay isn’t the only free agent receiver after this season. Both Marvin Jones Jr. and Danny Amendola are too. Truth is, both those guys were probably gone already since they’re 31 and 35 years old. If the offseason started today, the Lions are going into it with Quintez Cephus. That’s it.
Plan on the Lions taking a receiver early on in the draft in April, and they’ll definitely be spending money on one in free agency—even if that means paying for one they currently have on the roster.
I don’t know if anyone has noticed, but Matt Prater is having a really bad year. This is probably it for him. He’s 37 years old and also a free agent after this season. The Lions new GM and head coach will probably want to move on. Kickers aren’t the hardest thing to find, but it’s not that easy either. Ask the Bears.
How to get out of some of these contracts
At no point will I be talking about getting out of Matthew Stafford’s deal. He’s literally the biggest reason why someone would want to take this job. So get that out of your mind.
What I’m talking about his all these former Patriots that, like many former Patriots, only work well on the Patriots. Those guys are sucking up a ton of money. For example, former Patriots are accounting for $46,380,667 of the teams $152,427,164 total spending. Next season they’ll account for $47,601,333, and that’s with three fewer players. You see the issue here?
I don’t know what the Lions are going to do to sell this team to a future GM and head coach looking for a job. As I mentioned before, you have Matthew Stafford and that’s cool. Outside of that, why would anyone want to take this job and become the next guy to risk his career?