Going back to Cali?
Two reports out of California today have Lions offensive coordinator Mike Martz resigning or being fired at season's end and landing at different places on the west coast. The San Diego Tribune reported Martz, a San Diego native, would be the next football coach at UCLA. The Los Angeles Times reported Martz will be the next offensive coordinator of the San Francisco 49ers.
While the Tribune report was proven inaccurate by Rick Neuheisel's hiring, the Times report has some validity considering Martz's agent Bob LaMonte is also the agent for 49ers coach Mike Nolan. A Lions source said Saturday "nothing's going on yet" when asked about Martz's future in Detroit, but coach Rod Marinelli and president Matt Millen will meet Monday to plot the course for 2008. In all likelihood, that includes life without Martz.
Receivers coach Kippy Brown could replace Martz and keep some continuity in the offense, but I'd at least explore a candidate like Cam Cameron, who's expected to be fired after one bad season in Miami but transformed San Diego into the NFL's highest-scoring offense last year.
This is an important offseason for the Lions, who have holes to fill defensively at linebacker, cornerback and defensive end (depending on Shaun Rogers' future, maybe tackle, too), and offensively at right tackle. As well as he's played recently, Sunday is likely Damien Woody's last game as a Lion. Weight continues to be an issue with him he lost 40 pounds last offseason, then gained 16 back earlier this year and there's reason to suspect his play will deteriorate again once a new contract is in hand.