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Are the Lions the Second Coming of 1999 Rams?

The NFL is king. Feel free to pay your respects.

Bulldog

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The styles of the two teams are different.

But what both have in common is a concentration of excellent draft choices and trades that seem to be taking a team that has been a doormat and turning it into an elite club in a short amount of time.

Recall that Vermeil was 5-11 in 1998 and looked like he might get fired, then went 13-3 in 1999 after Trent Green was lost for the season at qb.

Johnson at WR and Suh at DT are among the most talented players in the NFL and Stafford seems to be coming along well after 2 injured riddled seasons.

Mayhew has done a great job with the picks and FAs.

Jahvid Best. Nick Fairley to complement Suh.

The fleecing of Dallas and Jerry Jones in the Roy Williams trade where the Cowboys gave up #1, #3 and #6 picks for a guy the Lions new front office had no intention of giving a long-term deal to. Dallas gave him $37M and then cut him less than 2 years later.

Of course Mayhew is a former Redskin :)

But back to the season. I don't see Detroit letting up and I would think they and not Buffalo will end up being the true surprise club in 2011.

This week's game?

Dallas was favored according to one line I looked at.

To me, I would be surprised if Dallas wins this game.

The Lions are younger, faster and healthier. Unlike Washington, Detroit's front seven will punish Romo and Calvin Johnson will eat the Dallas corners alive.
 

redskins26

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I read an article awhile ago and the Rams GM at the time was gonna fire Vermail after the 5-11 season he talked to the NFL front office and they told him to consider it again for another day or so and he changed his mind
 

Fear The Spear

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I read an article awhile ago and the Rams GM at the time was gonna fire Vermail after the 5-11 season he talked to the NFL front office and they told him to consider it again for another day or so and he changed his mind
I read a while ago that the Lions decided to fire GM Matt Millen and later regretted it :joker:
 

Lanky Livingston

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I think the Lions are not the second coming of the 99 Rams, but the second coming of the early 90's Cowboys (which makes it all the more fitting they shattered the Cowboys hearts on Sunday). They are built to dominate for the next several years.

The comparison isn't perfect, of course: the Lions are more of a passing team than a running team, and the Cowboys were always Emmit first, everyone else second. However young ultra-accurate QB, dominant WR (as much as we hate Irvin, you have to admit he dominated the 90s - but Megatron will prove to be the much better WR when its all said and done), solid OL, stifling defensive line. The Lions will be good for quite awhile.
 

Om

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We'll see about Detroit. Few teams can make a sustained living depending on historic frantic comebacks every week. They started strong, but the last two weeks relied on Stafford-to-CJ lobs to stage frantic late-game steal jobs. They are a tough out, no doubt about it, and right now basking in the glow of recent, unexpected success.

Now what remains to be seen is whether they can succeed as the hunted instead of the hunter. They won't sneak up on anybody any more. And they won't get magic 4th-quarter heroics from Megatron week in and week out to rescue them from slow starts. If they are going to solidify and become a serious contender over time (unlike, say, last year's Chiefs) they will have to settle into the grind of winning games they will now be expected to, on a steady basis.

Fun to watch them grow though. Turkey Day may actually be fun on TV for the first time.
 

Lanky Livingston

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We'll see about Detroit. Few teams can make a sustained living depending on historic frantic comebacks every week. They started strong, but the last two weeks relied on Stafford-to-CJ lobs to stage frantic late-game steal jobs. They are a tough out, no doubt about it, and right now basking in the glow of recent, unexpected success.

Now what remains to be seen is whether they can succeed as the hunted instead of the hunter. They won't sneak up on anybody any more. And they won't get magic 4th-quarter heroics from Megatron week in and week out to rescue them from slow starts. If they are going to solidify and become a serious contender over time (unlike, say, last year's Chiefs) they will have to settle into the grind of winning games they will now be expected to, on a steady basis.

Fun to watch them grow though. Turkey Day may actually be fun on TV for the first time.

The problem is, the Stafford-to-CJ lob-jobs work. Megatron was triple-covered on Sunday, and still came down with that ball! What do you do next? Quadruple him? Eventually, teams are going to figure out how to take away Megatron, but its going to leave another option uncovered, whether that is Pettigrew, Young, or Best getting more and more running room or on screens. This offense is a machine once it gets going.

Plus, how much of these frantic comebacks are just young players getting used to eachother? Stafford is a beast, but he hasn't played much with his teammates due to injury. I think once this O gets clicking for real, its going to be very hard to stop them.
 

Om

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That's one way to look at it. :)

Another is ... we see teams fly out of the gate a million times. Some ascend to the heights, some plateau, some crash and burn. What I need to see is what Detroit does once the magic pixie dust settles. Randy Moss was CJ for a while. Everyone thought Cunningham-to-Moss in Minny was going to revolutionize football.

History has a way of smoothing things out.

We'll see.
 

Lanky Livingston

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That's one way to look at it. :)

Another is ... we see teams fly out of the gate a million times. Some ascend to the heights, some plateau, some crash and burn. What I need to see is what Detroit does once the magic pixie dust settles. Randy Moss was CJ for a while. Everyone thought Cunningham-to-Moss in Minny was going to revolutionize football.

History has a way of smoothing things out.

We'll see.
True - however, the last time Moss was dominating the way CJ currently is, Tom Brady threw 50TD passes, almost half of them went to Randy. :D
 

Om

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That was several years into the New England dynasty. Slightly different context.

All I'm saying is...right now Detroit is Flavor of the Month. That's not a knock against them---they are young and talented MAY go all dynastic on us. But they haven't yet. I like to view things in a somewhat broader arc than the frenzied, 24/7 hype-cycle that is today's sports world would have us.
 
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Lanky Livingston

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That was several years into the New England dynasty. Slightly different context.

All I'm saying is...right now Detroit is Flavor of the Month. That's not a knock against them---they are young and talented MAY go all dynastic on us yet. But they haven't yet. I like to view things in a somewhat broader arc than the frenzied, 24/7 hype-cycle that is today's sports world would have us focus on.
Well yes, I completely agree with you. However they are only the "flavor of the month" because the national media is shortsighted (and if we're going to be frank, quite dumb). If you look back at 2010, they were playing very well then and setting the table for their run this year.

They finished 6-10, however closer examination of the schedule reveals several truths:
1) the refs stole two victories from the Lions over the Bears - one was the very controversial "dropped" TD pass to Megatron, the other was a very, very, very weak roughing the passer call that extended the Bears winning drive.

2) they played Green Bay very well - they lost the first game by 2 points, but hung 26 points on that vaunted defense. They beat them the second game, holding that ridiculous offense to a measly 3 points.

3) The Jets (predicted by many as the AFC superbowl team) needed overtime to beat the Lions, 23-20. This was a game they really had no business being in, as Schwartz gave them the ball back with 1:40 to play instead of icing the game away with the run (young coaching mistake). Also, this was the game Stafford went down in - he was lighting the Jets up before his injury.

4) They scored 32 or more points 4 times, including a 44-6 blowout of the Rams.

5) They finished the season with 4-straight victories, over four decent to great teams: Green Bay, Tampa, Miami & Minnesota.

To me, this shows a young team that is learning how to win. Last year the last-minute comebacks fell short (or were stolen from them by shoddy, shoddy calls) - this year they are learning how to get back into games. Soon, my prediction is that they will make the transition to not having to come back at all!
 

Om

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Right. Like I said, that's one way to look at it. They're doing fun things.

Sustaining it is the next test.
 

Bulldog

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What may be hard for some people to grasp based on the lackluster history of the division vis a vis the others in the league such as the NFC East is that the Packers and Lions right now may be the best teams in the NFL, period :)

New England? I would take either Green Bay or Detroit against the Patriots. New England doesn't have a top 20 defense. You can run on them and throw on them.
 

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