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Detroit Lions' Fans Are To Blame for Team's Struggles, Writes Bill Simonson

DETROIT - DECEMBER 20:  Drew Stanton #5 the Detroit Lions throws a third quarter pass while playing the Arizona Cardinals on December 20, 2009 at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. Arizona won the game 31-24. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images
Zac SnyderContributor IDecember 21, 2009

A decade of losing can do funny things to a man's mind. It seems this Detroit Lions season has turned the loud-mouthed Bill "Huge" Simonson downright delusional.

In his latest piece featured on mlive.com Bill blames the fans for the franchise's continued woes:
"The 'moral victory club' never holds the team accountable for anything, and because they have been Lions fans all their lives, they will never question what the team does on or off the field."
Sorry Bill, but it was the fans who clamored for Matt Millen's firing long before Mr. Ford actually pulled the trigger; it was the fans that held a walk-out to protest management; it was the fans who have forced a number of blackouts the last two seasons; it was the fans that booed an ineffective offense off the field last Sunday against the Cardinals.
I can tell you as one of the 40,577 in attendance that not one person I came across struck me as anything close to content with the Lions' level of "achievement".

Sure, we agreed that Jim Schwartz has a chance to be the kind of coach that the Lions have been searching for, but there is a big difference between blindly following a coach and admiring a coach's demeanor during a challenging first season.

We liked the play of some young players, particularly Louis Delmas and Zack Follett. That doesn't mean that fans necessarily believe the Lions are on their way to the Super Bowl.

If Bill Simonson expected a miraculous turnaround in one year then he is a bigger fool than I thought. Of course, that must be the enabler in me talking. Simonson's diatribe continues:
"Another sign they will never go anywhere is that Lions general manager Martin Mayhew has stuck with Daunte Culpepper for nearly two seasons. How Mayhew can look at this guy and think he could have helped this franchise for another year shows he has no clue about evaluating talent."
Of course Simonson doesn't specify exactly what he thinks Martin Mayhew should have done, that would be asking far too much. Perhaps Mayhew should have tricked the Patriots into trading Tom Brady for the rights to Barry Sanders.

The truth is that the disastrous Millen years left the Lions like an expansion team without the benefit of an expansion draft.

Most reasonable Lions fans seem to be willing to give Mayhew a chance to see what he can do, even if they didn't agree with his hiring. Mayhew should get credit for fleecing the Cowboys in trading away Roy Williams and it appears he was able to find NFL talent in the later rounds of last year's draft, something Matt Millen could never accomplish.

No one is looking for moral victories. We're looking for evidence that real victories may be around the corner.

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