So far, we have covered our biggest surprise and our biggest disappointments of the Detroit Lions 2013 season. This week, we’re going to take a look at what the Lions need a little bit less of in order to survive next season.
There are a lot of fingers pointing in all different directions when we ask who is to blame for the destruction of the Lions postseaon hopes. Many say head coach Jim Schwartz killed their playoff dreams in Pittsburgh on a fake field goal attempt. Others will point at quarterback Matthew Stafford, who turned the ball over far too many times and constantly threw away victories for Detroit. We’ve even heard some blame the receviers in Detroit who dropped several passes each week.
It’s fair to say the collection of each individual’s failures brought the collapse of the Detroit Lions. Personally, if we had to pluck one player out of the lineup, the answer may surrpise you.
Louis Delmas, to put it lightly, is a leader that can’t lead. A joke that isn’t funny. Delmas is a monster that can’t scare anyone.
He has the attitude of Richard Sherman without any of his abilities. There is very little to be excited about when it comes to the Lions’ pass-defense and Delmas isn’t one of them. It’s time for Detroit to do like Bob Seger and turn the page.
Now, statistically speaking, he had one his better years this time around. He snaged three picks this year, which matched is grand career total, but that was really all he had going for him.
On the topic of interceptions, linebacker DeAndre Levy had six interceptions this season. So let’s not get excited for Delmas’ three. Even a blind, talentless trash-talking squirrel will find an acorn once in a while.
Putting aside all of his efforts on the field, failure or success, what kills the Lions in the pass-defense is his inability to be a strong leader for the defense. Delmas isn’t exactly the greatest role model on the field. The argument could be made that the lack of leadership on the defensive side has been a struggle in Detroit for several years, even before Delmas, but the fact remains that he is not a viable answer in the Lions’ organization anymore.
While the Lions should be looking an experienced veteran in free agency, they can’t not look for a young guy in this years’ draft. Here is my personal advice for Jim Caldwell and Martin Mayhew: Stay away from picking a guy out of a non-BCS conference with our first round pick.
If you’re going to spend a first round pick on a defensive player in today’s game, you best look at the conferences that produces players who see NFL-caliber receivers each and every week. Delmas played ball at Western Michigan University. How many guys did he face in the Mid American Conference still play (or ever made it) in the NFL? Not as many guys as corners and safeties faced in the SEC or the PAC 12.
Drafting athletes out of BCS conference is like getting rookies who actually have real experience. Of course, you’ll still find busts at that level like Dee Milliner, but even Milliner still has time to grow.
Delmas also cannot seem to tell the difference between getting in an opponents head and looking like a complete tool. He loves to start talking trash at exactly the most inappropriate times. Delmas will tip a pass away from a receiver, slam his helmet against his opponent like he just made the play of the day and then get burned a couple plays later and give up a score.
Hey Lou! How did it feel to get burned by Cincinnati rookie Tyler Eifert in week 7 this year? Eifert looked like an all-star against you in front of your home fans.
I guess we could continue to slam Delmas, but instead, we want to see Detroit just let him go and move on. There’s got to be somebody else out there that can grab this team by horns and bring about a leadership that this young secondary can look up to.