Lions-Bears postgame thoughts
Wow. Where to begin. The Lions were utterly atrocious, even embarrassing in Sunday's 34-7 loss to the Bears. It was their most lopsided home loss since a 41-9 defeat to Indianapolis on Thanksgiving Day 2004, and in many ways it was worse.
The Lions still haven't scored in the first quarter this year (38-0). They had minus-4 yards of offensive in Sunday's opening period and gained negative or no yards on their first four offensive plays. Worst of all, coming off a bye week, they looked lifeless and unprepared.
If you missed it, Detroit used some no-huddle offense Sunday and moved the ball effectively every once in a while. More often than not, they stubbed their toe with penalties or missed assignments. Jon Kitna was bad again (8-of-16, 74 yards), and he was benched at halftime with a case of back spasms for Dan Orlovsky.
Orlovsky was no better. He threw an interception returned for a touchdown on his second pass of the game and so wildly overshot one fourth-quarter pass that referee Scott Green had to announce there was no intentional grounding because "the quarterback was not under pressure."
It's hard to imagine things getting better anytime soon. Kitna said he'll re-assess his back later in the week, and Lions coach Rod Marinelli was non-committal on who his starter will be next week against Minnesota. No. 3 quarterback Drew Stanton warmed up at halftime. I don't imagine the Lions want to start him on the road, against a good Minnesota front, but it might come down to that.
Receiver Roy Williams said Kitna should remain the starter going forward despite his subpar season (six turnovers, five TD passes).
"No question about it," Williams said. "He's our guy."
Williams also voiced support for Marinelli, who answered questions from reporters in in an uncomfortable postgame news conference with vice president Tom Lewand standing a few feet to his left.
"I stand behind Rod all day long," Williams said. "That's my guy. He don't need to change nothing. I don't know what it is, but Rod is the guy that guy, he's the coach that everybody respects."
Lewand wasn't as supportive. Asked if he believes Marinelli is the right man for the job and capable of turning things around, Lewand spoke of the "tremendous, tremendous respect" he has for a coach who will "continue to do things right." Never once did he say Marinelli will finish out the year.
I thought all along that would be the case, but I'm not so sure now. There's little Marinelli can do to save his job offensive coordinator Jim Colletto deserves part of the blame for a horrific offense and the talent on the team is subpar, but Marinelli is out of scapegoats.
The Lions desperately need to trade Williams if possible to help the next the coach and general manager build toward the future. They need to start playing more of the younger players Jordon Dizon, Landon Cohen, Stanton immediately. And most of all they need badly to win a game.
That seems unlikely, but without a victory soon there's no telling how low this season can sink.