As my family and friends know, I am a big-time Detroit Lions fan. Let’s face it, they haven’t given me a lot of joyous moments through the years, but for some insane reason, I still root for them. Probably because I am a Detroit kind of guy and get upset when national media know-it-alls take their cheap shots at the city. I take it very personally that the Lions have been, for the most part, laughingstocks during my lifetime. Even when they do make the playoffs, they always lose!
Recently, I sent an email to the Lions through the “contact us” portion of their website. Basically, I took the opportunity to vent at them because they’ve never really had an honest-to-God Super Bowl contender during the 44 years I’ve been on this Earth. All the other local pro sports teams have won at least one championship in my lifetime: the Tigers in 1984; the Pistons in 1989, 1990, and 2004; and the Red Wings in 1997, 1998, 2002, and 2008. The closest the Lions came to winning a championship in my lifetime was reaching the NFC Championship Game in January 1992, where they got their backsides handed to them by the eventual Super Bowl champion Washington Redskins.
In my email, I wrote that former Lions owner William Clay Ford Sr., when he was alive, should have publicly apologized to Lions fans everywhere for his incompetence and for never bringing a winner to the Motor City. Obviously, that time has passed, since Ford died in March 2014 at the age of 88. However, his son, Bill Ford Jr., sure as heck can publicly apologize to Lions fans on the family’s behalf. It’s the right thing to do. Having said that, I’m not holding my breath waiting for that to happen. It would be great if Ford Jr. himself, or at least president Tom Lewand or GM Martin Mayhew, would personally reply to my email (I haven’t received a reply as of this writing). However, I’ll probably get some sort of form letter email reply from some public relations representative.
The Lions’ track record during Ford Sr.’s tenure as owner speaks volumes, far more than I ever could. However, I don’t have anything bad to say about Ford as a person. From all I’ve heard, he was a pretty decent man (probably too loyal to his employees) who did lots of charitable work and tried his best to make the metro Detroit area a better place. The same can’t be said for former Lions team president Matt Millen. I know he’s been gone since 2008, but he still bugs me to no end! He is easily the worst front-office executive in professional sports history, and I don’t think there’s a close second. He raped and pillaged an entire NFL franchise while Ford Sr. turned a blind eye, and to this date has not publicly apologized or said I’m sorry for making a complete idiot of himself during his time here.
It bothers me greatly that the Lions, at least in my opinion, are treated as an ugly stepchild by the media. They certainly aren’t given the same kind of national media attention as teams such as the Dallas Cowboys, Pittsburgh Steelers, New England Patriots, and especially the Green Bay Packers. It makes me sick how much love the Packers get from the national media: how great Lambeau Field is, the great tradition the team has, what wonderful fans the Packers have, etc. Packers fans haven’t had to put up with one-hundredth (at least) of the garbage that we Lions fans have had to put up with through the years. I realize a lot of the national media love is because the Packers had Brett Favre and now have Aaron Rodgers at quarterback, but still!
Can you guys tell that I get worked up pretty easily by the Lions? I realize that big-picture wise, the NFL isn’t that important, but it still bugs me greatly. That’s all for now. I’m out of here!