To start it off, I had never heard of the Detroit Lions before yesterday, when I read an article about the team on Yahoo! News. I've never played football, I don't know the sport, I don't know the rules, and I certainly don't know how the Lions achieved such a dubious record.
In short, I'm not an authority on the NFL, and I'm not that good with words, so I hope you'll bear with me.
Bottom line: I tell you what I know about it, and you can tell me what you think of it—and vice versa.
I don't really know the exact words to lay it out for your understanding, so I'll just put it plainly. An 0-16 record is not that bad after all.
Before you freak out, especially you Lions fans, let's put it this way:
The Lions have lots of room to improve. Well, in fact, the whole room is available for improvements. Being at the bottom, there's no way to go but up. I just feel that in every sport, there's always a Cinderella story waiting to be unraveled. (For non-NFL creatures, see Boston Celtics and Rocky Balboa)
But there's something at the other side of this story. Lions players are now being criticized and chastised as the laughingstock of America, and you can't blame the Detroit Lions' fans (I don't know if there's a single soul who would admit to being a fan right now) for joining in.
But what are the chances, after the season had clearly been battered beyond repair, the Lions actually tried to end up dead last? After all, are they not now enjoying their 15 minutes of fame? And as a result, is it not the fans who are enjoying the relentless ridicule?
Like I said before, I will not pretend to know the NFL, but at least I'm dead sure that all athletes have some kind of pride, no matter how bad things get. It's not worth knowing that I used to play basketball in high school, but this fact does give me some credibility when I say that I know what these guys have sacrificed: waking up at 5 a.m. just to jog (when everybody's having a good sleep with their teddies and blankies), practices at least twice a day, lifting weights like nuts, and lying in bed with muscle pain and cramps at night.
It almost seems like a forgone conclusion that NFL players do these things, but after seeing the Lions play this season, some people may seem to wonder.
But who on Earth would not want to do their job well (except for politicians)?
And lastly, these guys are heroes in their own rite.
The year's about to end, so let's just be nice to everyone. We really don't know, but the Lions might overachieve next year, going perhaps 1-15.
Seriously, I hope everybody's OK—and Happy New Year to all.