It’s another bipolar season for the Lions, screaming between warm and dead-Kelvin cold. You’ve gotten a taste of almost everything now, with the Lions stomping on the Jaguars, last second heroics against the Falcons, agonizing grasp-slipping crap against the Bears and terrifying blowouts by the Colts and Packers. I suppose all that’s left is a hose job by the officials in a game but I know you’re already anticipating such things.
Do we know what the Lions are? I would like to think we do, but I know that if the Lions notch another win next week against the Vikings it’ll be back to the drawing board again for some fans, desperate to hold out hope that 4-4 is a start for some sort of apocalyptic turnaround.
I don’t really check to that anymore, not without a significant streak. But I wish to propose an alternative. I’d rather think less about what the Lions are, and more about what they are not.
Week 8 Colts-Lions Song of the Game: “Not” by Big Thief
The Lions are defined in 2020 by what they are not. They are not the San Francisco 49ers. They are not the Titans. They would desperately follow such patterns, were they not possessed by such a dearth of talent that calling the Lions a knockoff brand is insulting to the actual product.
The Lions are not the 1985 Bears. That was 35 years ago. Nevertheless, Patricia attempts to recreate history. If you were going to go back in time, I would have thought it’d be for a more exciting cause. Killing Hitler, bet on past Super Bowls like Biff or something.
It’s not the phone on the table
Nor the bed in the earth
Nor the bed in the stable
Nor your stable words
It’s not the formless being
Nor the cry in the air
Nor the boy I’m seeing
With her long black hair
The Lions do not possess an elite quarterback in 2020. If everything has to be perfect for Matthew Stafford—a protecting line, almost half a dozen receivers of quality and the defense should probably play nice—then he cannot be counted among those echoes. Elite quarterbacks overcome obstacles and banish mistakes. Stafford succumbed to them on Sunday.
The Lions do not have an actual offense.
The Lions cannot run the ball, but that won’t stop them from trying. And trying. And trying. And trying.
The Lions are not a serious contender. All it would take is a few minutes of watching a competent team to get that sense. Don’t get it twisted: even teams like the Rams and Packers can drop silly games, but they still win ball games and put together drives.
The Lions do not have a good defense. The talent simply does not exist there. Again, please watch any other team that’s currently with a win-heavy record to understand this.
The Lions are not.