The Detroit Lions were expected to struggle this season. But fans have to be wondering if there is any hope for the future.
General manager Brad Holmes and head coach Dan Campbell were hired to change everything about the Detroit Lions. Principal owner Sheila Ford Hamp charged them with the difficult task of exorcising the demons that have haunted this franchise for over 60 years.
That isn’t an easy assignment, nor is it one that can be accomplished in short order. The Lions have had a turnstile of coaches and players that have failed to lift this franchise out of the doldrums of mediocrity. Now it’s up to Holmes and Campbell.
Holmes’ first offseason at the helm was lauded by the fans and media as a hit. Two first-round draft picks, a third-round selection, and what was expected to be a serviceable quarterback (Jared Goff) in exchange for Matthew Stafford was considered a solid win.
The restraint not to overspend in free agency, and a solid-looking draft class to start the necessary building in the trenches for a team that needs everything was considered a good starting point. The experts expected it to be a long, hard season for the Lions, but it was the type of start to the rebuild that didn’t strangle the salary cap and the rookie class has contributed.
Yet here the Lions sit at 0-8. There is no escaping the type of futility the team has experienced this season.
However, the Lions are two game-ending field goals away from being 2-6. Not great, but certainly better than 0-8. Baltimore Ravens kicker Justin Tucker had to make an NFL record 66-yard field goal to beat Detroit in Week 3.
These Lions are not good, but they’re not as horrible as they are made out to be either. There is still a ton of work to be done before this franchise will be competitive enough to challenge for the postseason.
That being said, after two horrible games in the past three the Lions have played, both at home no less, the question is now being asked. What do the Lions possess to give the fanbase hope for a better future? Is there any light at the end of the tunnel?
Can Lions fans find hope anywhere?
Even in the heart-breaking losses to Baltimore and Minnesota, the fans saw a reason to have hope. Up to the final interception in Los Angeles against the Rams that cooked the Lions’ goose, the media and fans were impressed with the undermanned effort and moxy these Lions displayed.
Those games left many feeling like this regime could turn this franchise around with an infusion of talent. However, the losses to Cincinnati and Philadelphia were so stark and devastating it makes it seem like there will never be a better tomorrow.
What is the truth? Is there reason to believe in Holmes and Campbell actually turning this franchise around? What do the Lions have to do in order to give the fans hope? The proof is in the pudding. If the Lions want to give their fans hope, they need to find a way to get a win or two.
No one is going to give them a victory, they will have to earn it by playing 60 minutes of solid football. They will need to score early, be solid on defense for an entire game and get some explosive downfield plays on offense.
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Right now, hope does not easily spring eternal for Lions fans. But if they can find a way to capture a win after the bye, especially with a roster that is a long way from being competitive, that would be the first step toward bringing a flicker of hope to downtrodden fans in Detroit.