At this point, everyone who has ever talked to me about Lions football knows that I despise Jim Schwartz with a passion exceeding that of my disgust with Brad Ausmus’s bullpen moves in 2014. In simpler terms, Jim Schwartz sucks. He was the worst in a long line of terrible Lions head coaches (consider the talent that was here in the last few years vs. that of the 2000s). While I never met him personally, he was also, by many accounts, a douche. There were always rumblings that he was very unapproachable, abrasive in media sessions, and generally had a personality that rubbed people the wrong way around Ford Field.
And this past Sunday, there was the lunacy of him being carried off the field as Bills defensive coordinator after the Bills stunned the Lions, 17-14. Sure, Schwartz should be proud of himself, to an extent. He used his knowledge of how poorly Matthew Stafford can play to develop a game plan that prevented the Lions from ever getting established on offense. But, let’s not forget that Stafford’s lack of development to this point in his career largely falls on Schwartz and the coaching staff he had here. And that, if the Lions had a kicker that was any better than the one playing for your local high school before they signed Matt Prater this week, they would have won the game despite their offense. Golden Tate, quickly becoming a fan favorite in Detroit, said he wanted to throw Schwartz to the ground during this ridiculous display. I agree with that feeling.
With that preamble, I bring you this “blast from the past.” I wrote it immediately following the 2012 season and posted it to an MLive board. It was in response to an article (that I can’t find anymore) in which Schwartz claimed that injuries – not his poor coaching and lack of leadership – led to the Lions’ 4-12 record that year. I saved it, apparently because I was that proud of it, and randomly found it this morning on my computer. It was titled, appropriately, “Jim Schwartz Sucks.” So, here goes:
“Does this guy really believe the crap that is spewing out of his mouth?
Aaron Berry was just average, and Eric Wright was a clown from what I remember. So what? Spievey? Same. Didn’t anticipate a Delmas injury? That’s like saying I didn’t anticipate it getting light out in the morning. (Note, added 10/10/14: I have to give myself credit, that was a good line). Jacob Lacey? Another fine example of the type of second-rate player this garbage organization loves to sign. I will say this, Ron Bartell played a nice game yesterday, but one nice game from a guy who wasn’t here the rest of the year in no way makes up for the fact that this secondary was awful even before any injuries or felonies (Berry).
And “we lost a lot of defensive tackles at the end.” Again, totally ignoring the real issue, which is that we got very little from our defensive ends (KVB and Avril overrated) and our linebackers are average. They aren’t terrible, but none of them jumps the route and makes the pick, strips the ball from the runner, or gets in the backfield. They make the routine plays most of the time, but that’s it. (Another note, added 10/10/14, for context: DeAndre Levy didn’t break out till last year, now he is a Pro Bowler in my opinion.)
I think this season proved that Schwartz is in over his head and isn’t the guy to take us to the next level. People talk about how we lost all these close games – so what? That’s what we did in 2010. That was acceptable then, not now. The coach can’t manage his emotions, he can’t manage his team, he can’t manage the clock…. where else in the NFL would this be excusable? Get rid of him now before it’s too late to sign someone better (i.e. anyone breathing).”
Well, they didn’t get rid of him at that point. Then, last year, he presided over the most pathetic spectacle in recent memory, in which the team had about a 99.9% chance of winning the division following their second win over Chicago, but finished 1-6 and missed the playoffs.
And, just in case anyone had forgotten, his nonsense with the challenge flag in the Thanksgiving game in 2012 was a major factor in the loss that day. It may have been the one time he ever admitted making a mistake, though. I thought I’d throw that in for good measure.
In conclusion, Jim Schwartz sucks, he always has sucked, and he always will suck.