This isn’t my first rodeo — I’ve seen coaches come and I’ve seen coaches go. If they weren’t excited at their introductory press conferences, they should have never been hired.
I was there, and here are five thoughts:
1. Give the guy a chance. Everything you’ve read about him being genuine was on display at his presser and his time talking to reporters off the stage. Of course, he said he wants to win a championship right away. He took the Colts to the Super Bowl in his first season as head coach there. He’s got two Super Bowl rings. He knows more about winning championships than any other Lions’ coach in recent history. Just because the Lions have had some bad coaching hires, fans’ anger shouldn’t be taken out on Caldwell.
2. While Caldwell always looks calm on the sidelines he was passionate on Wednesday. He’s excited and it came through. Reminded me of a preacher at the podium and not just because he quoted a few phrases from the Bible. His wife said when he got the call that he had the job he fist-pumped and yelled out, “Outstanding.’’ Believe me, there’s fire in that belly he just has it under control.
3. He sees nothing but talent in quarterback Matthew Stafford. Pretty much raved about Stafford, who will be entering his sixth season. He’s not going to reel him in — he’ll still be able to make explosive plays. But he will have parameters. You can tell Caldwell was impressed with Stafford and his commitment from their meeting during Caldwell’s first interview on Jan. 3.
4. Loves the nucleus of the team and has spoken to Stafford (again), Ndamukong Suh and Stephen Tulloch since he was hired on Tuesday. Also, he’s texted with Calvin Johnson who he comfortably called C.J. He knows more about the defense since he was the Ravens’ offensive coordinator on Dec. 16 when Baltimore beat the Lions 18-16 on Monday Night Football when Justin Tucker nailed a 61-yard field goal with 38 seconds left. But he’ll know all the nuances of the offense soon.
5. On the like-ability quotient he scores high. Don’t think he’d be a good politician because he seems so honest. His wife Cheryl is a gem too. Will be writing more about their personal life in upcoming days.