November 27, 2008

A Reflection on Bad Football

SO THE DETROIT LIONS lost again today. The 47-10 beatdown they suffered at the hands of the Tennessee Titans was an awful and painful thing to watch, and it was a performance so wretched one believes the Lovable Losers will do the impossible and go 0-16 this year. They looked that bad. Whether it was the fumble on the second play of the game, or the pick-six that put the Titans up 21-3, Detroit could do nothing right. Nothing.

There were a few flashes of brilliance from the Lions' offense, but the wretched play of the team's defense amazed me. I've seen some bad teams play this year, and I don't think there's any defensive unit in the league worse than that of the Lions. When running backs can sprint for sixty-yard plays without getting touched, and walk into the Lions' end zone without a finger being laid upon them ... well, it's time to go back to the drawing board. Detroit's coach, Rod Marinelli, last week famously challenged a reporter to find better players; well, I have a few in mind. Coach, if you're interested, just let me know.

The Lions' wretchedness has led many football fans around America, who perhaps understandably would like to see quality football on Thanksgiving, to call for the Lions to be stripped of their Turkey Day berth. I do not think this is warranted, although today's game did make me slightly more sympathetic to their argument. I mean, I don't know about you, but unless my team has a commanding lead, I like football games to be competitive beyond the first quarter of play.

Still, I do think there are plenty of reasons why Detroit should keep its Thanksgiving Day game. For one, they've been doing it for nigh on 70 years. That's a lot of tradition and not something that should be thrown away lightly. For another, despite Detroit's present miserable state, many Turkey Day games have been hard-fought and competitive contests, and there is no reason to think they will not be again.

If the main issue is that Detroit isn't very good, this can be easily rectified through doing a better job at scheduling. Next year, for instance, the Lions could play the Cincinnati Bengals. True, that's a game that might not have playoff implications, but at least it would probably go four quarters. Besides, it's not as if the Lions are alone in stinking things up. The Seahawks-Cowboys game is just as grim, and as I write the 2-9 Seahawks are getting their feathers plucked in Texas Stadium.

Plus, who the hell wants to root for the Cowboys? I mean, at least with the Lions, everyone can root for them without feeling guilty or vomiting a little in their throats. Try doing that with the showboating, pompous windbags that make up the Dallas Cowboys. Well, no, don't -- you'll get physically ill if you try -- but you see where I'm going with this. I'd sooner see Dallas lose its Thanksgiving Day privileges than the Lions.

Of course, today's general awfulness was only compounded by bad halftime shows, bad announcing and bad commercials. I don't know about you, but if I hear any of the Toyota Motor Co.'s truck commercials one more time, I'm going to go throw up. Then, I'm going to go find Mr Deep-Voiced Rural-Dwelling Real American and kick him so hard that Toyota might as well use Celine Dion to broadcast the virtues of its pickups. Stick that in your pipes and smoke it.

Posted by Benjamin Kepple at November 27, 2008 05:40 PM | TrackBack
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