Time for Matt Patricia’s turn trying to guide a rudderless franchise to end.
Only seven NFL teams put up 20 points in every game this year. The Lions are the only one with a losing record. The rest combine for a 37-9 mark.
Give Brayden Coombs to first shot at the interim job. He’s been one of the few bright spots this season, as the Lions’ special teams units consistently played well.
At least special teams put 11 players on the field.
The Lions defense has been caught three times the last two weeks with only 10 players on the field.
See if Coombs handles it well, and if not, there’s always offseason shopping time.
Patricia supposedly was going to bring fundamentals and a stout defense to Detroit. That’s been a pipe dream.
General manager Bob Quinn hasn’t been a fan favorite recently, but that’s because he’s been shopping for Patricia’s grocery list. Quinn assembled a roster to cater to Patricia’s defensive coaching style.
Stop the run and run the ball. Sounded good. It just didn’t work out at all.
Find an offensive coordinator who will give Matthew Stafford the freedom to use his arm talent instead of bury it in game manager mode 90% of the time. (While you’re at it, find a coordinator or QB coach who can teach Stafford to spot linebackers dropping into coverage.)
The Patricia experiment sounded good at first. The longtime assistant to the best coach of his generation. One whose defenses were routinely top notch despite often not having top-notch talent.
But it’s been plainly obvious for awhile now that it isn’t working.
Losing last week to Minnesota and to Indianapolis the week before gives Patricia an uphill climb in the division and playoff race that I’m not sure he’s up to. Those were winnable games the Lions needed to stay in the race.
As management said prior to the season, this team needs to play meaningful games in December. The way it’s trending, the only meaningful December games in Ford Ford could be the high school championships recently announced for Dec. 4-5.
Maybe Patricia needs to go back to being a defensive coordinator. Plenty of coaches find themselves promoted above their head.
Take Rod Marinelli, Jim Schwartz, Marty Mornhinweg. All failures as head coach for the Lions, but who returned to being coordinators and found success elsewhere.
Who would the Lions turn to if Coombs doesn’t seem like a fit?
You could offer Bill Belichick triple the highest coaching salary, give him a small share of ownership, play to his NFL coaching start with the Lions as a storybook complete circle and feed his ego by saying he’ll unquestionably be considered the greatest coach of all time in any sport if he can win with the Lions. But let’s get real, the Lions won’t do that.
Regardless of what they choose to do, its obvious Patricia is not the right guy to right the ship.