The Detroit Lions had a bad performance heading into the bye week, but a former player has questioned their effort level.
Sometimes things just don’t go well, and a team is powerless to stop it. That surely fit the Detroit Lions in Week 5, as they were shutout by the New England Patriots on the road. In a big picture sense, the bye week is coming at a good time.
Win or lose, during last year’s 3-13-1 campaign or through five games this year, it’s been tough to question if the Lions’ players buy-in to head coach Dan Campbell or to question their effort level on game days. They buy-in, and they give their best effort even if they’re overmatched talent-wise.
It’s hard to say the Patriots, beyond a few players they had few if any answers for (Rhamondre Stevenson, Matthew Judon, Jakobi Meyers), overwhelmed the Lions with talent in Week 5. Campbell going for it on fourth down six times, and the demoralizing results (0-for-6) were the easy bullseye for the loss.
Former Lions player concerned about team’s effort level vs. the Patriots
It’s hard to find a Lions’ player who played for Matt Patricia who will defend him, but T.J. Lang did it. The former Lions’ offensive tackle is now the sideline reporter for the Lions’ flagship radio station, so he has a unique view on Sundays.
That is a major concern right now about this team, because they normally lose at least close. They compete to the end,” said Lang. “Yesterday, there was no compete, there was no competitiveness. There was no rebound. You know, come back from adversity — boom, you know, counterpunch, whatever you want to call it. There was none of that. It just looks like they laid down and just limped into the bye week and just wanted to get the hell out of there. That’s what it looked like.”
It’s easy to play armchair quarterback about the effort level and demeanor of players. But there are tangible signs that can be seen when watching on television, on tape afterwards or down on the field live, as Lang is in his job. He clearly noticed something was off with the Lions last Sunday, from the perspective of a former player, which is another sign the week off is coming at a good time.