Lions relying on veteran presence to aid defense

The Lions have looked like anything but a solid team this preseason, and it has irked head coach Jim Schwartz. Although some, including yours truly, have criticized the talent that has been assembled in Detroit, the Lions are still trying to better themselves.

Since the Lions were outplayed in every way by the Cleveland Browns, the team has added three veteran defensive players to help right the ship. Rashean Mathis, Rocky McIntosh and Justin Bannan are expected to play helpful roles, but their greater effect by be in how they approach games and what the younger players on the team can learn from them.

Still, it’s hard to ignore the sense of desperation that comes when a team starts throwing money at a problem right before the season actually starts. It’s a common opinion among many that the current regime in Detroit is on its last leg. With another disappointing season, it may be time for the Lions to clean house – again.

Jim Schwartz holds a different opinion, insisting the team is simply trying to get better.

“The only message is we are going to keep on trying to add good football players,” Schwartz said, via Chris McCosky of the Detroit News.  “It wasn’t a reaction to anyone’s play or anything else.  It was more just the opportunity to get those guys.  We are happy to have all of them.”

I see what Schwartz is trying to do here. Even for a bad team, it’s far too early to panic, and frankly, the Lions aren’t panicking. They’re making the most of a bad situation. Panicking is characterized as doing something rash that you wouldn’t normally do. This is a calculated effort to win more football games.

It’s important to note here that the Lions are not dead in the water. Yeah, they were nothing short of terrible against the Cleveland Browns, but they still have playmakers on offense that can complement each other, and although the backend of their defense is suspect at times, they have a very strong front four that can cause chaos in the offensive backfield.

Although the Lions’ defensive acquisitions aren’t necessarily a sign that the team is getting desperate, the moves are a sign that the Lions know they have a serious problem. It’s hard to imagine the moves helping the Lions in a big way, but at this point, every little bit helps. The Lions aren’t desperate, but they have serious problems to address, and they know it.

Shane Clemons

About Shane Clemons

Shane Clemons came from humble beginnings creating his own Jaguars blog before moving on to SBNation as a featured writer for the Jaguars. He then moved to Bloguin where he briefly covered the AFC South before taking over Bloguin's Jaguars blog. Since the inception of This Given Sunday, Shane has served as an editor for the site, doing his best not to mess up a good thing.