The Detroit Lions are a mess right now.
The high-powered offense has sputtered. The secondary remains an unresolved disaster. Special teams breakdowns have managed to get the team beat each of the last two weeks leaving the Lions 1-3 entering the bye this week.
They’re not anywhere they haven’t been recently but some figured the franchise had turned the corner a year ago when the Lions qualified for the playoffs for the first time in 12 years. Now, issues have been exposed and Detroit is in its familiar position – last place in the NFC North.
Team president Tom Lewand isn’t pushing the panic button even if the team is failing right now in all three phases. Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press caught up with Lewand this morning at a public appearance in Windsor, Ontario.
“As I stand here before you today at 1-3, it doesn’t faze us,” Lewand said. “We understand that we’re not where we want to be. This is not where we expected to be one quarter of the way into the 2012 NFL season. But we also know it’s a different 1-3 than we’ve experienced in the past.
“I’ve been 1-3 before -- probably too many times than I’d like to remember we’ve been 1-3. And there’ve been times where we sit there on a Monday morning after a loss to take us to 0-4 or 1-3 or even to 2-2 and 3-1 and said, ‘We’re in trouble, because we don’t have players, we don’t have talent, we don’t have this, we don’t have that. We don’t have some of these fundamental characteristics on our core product that we need to be successful in the NFL.'
“Conversely, we can sit there yesterday and be disappointed – and believe me, every day looks like the (gloomy) weather out here today when you’re losing. The clouds are sitting right over our headquarters at Allen Park or over Ford Field every day when you lose. But if you kind of peek through the clouds and again focus on that fundamental characteristic, you can see that you’ve got the talent in place to be successful in the NFL.”
We’re not certain what a “different 1-3” looks like. Truthfully, as poorly as the Lions are playing right now – again it is across the board – they are fortunate not to be a different 0-4.
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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune