Before the start of the 2021 season, I wrote a column about Dan Campbell’s experiment is underway. There were a few different things I was looking forward to seeing from Campbell in my freshman year. Can he build a culture? Can it help struggling players play better? Can he handle the pressure of scrutiny that fans and the media might bring? It seems fair to say that these questions were answered positively.
In the second year, there is a whole new set of expectations and questions that Campbell will have to answer. Every year, the goalposts move. Here are the top four things that would be good to see in your second year of Dan Campbell’s experience.
Win mini games
There are only 17 games per season. It’s really hard to call any of them a little. They all mean something. What I mean by this is that the Lions need to go out and beat the teams that they have to beat. If the Lions are playing with a one win team, they have to defeat them.
Lions have been known to have failed these trap games in the past. How many times can you remember the Lions losing against the team with your quarterback or rookie quarterback? Drew Stanton in 2014 Ring the Bell? Good teams care about business against the teams they excel at. Detroit may not outsell a lot of teams at the moment, but with a relatively easy schedule (see: Bears twice), the Lions have no doubts having matches should win over. If they have a chance to beat the Three Fingers and One Cheeks team, they should do it.
Win the big matches
Why not just win all the games, am I right? In all seriousness, if the Lions want to compete in 2022, they should try to beat some teams that are less likely to be defeated on paper. It’s time for some special victories. It could be said that the Lions were able to get two of them in the first year. Now is the time to do it one step at a time.
Thanksgiving match against buffalo bills is the largest. It will be a very tough match, and there is a chance that the Lions will be blown away by a team that participates a lot in Energy Conversational, but if Dan Campbell can train lions to win this game, there will likely be a statue of him next to the statue of the robot. Even better, there should be a statue of him standing on top of a Detroit spirit statue.
Don’t get lost there
The ending of The Lions vs.Bears Thanksgiving in 2021 is a good example of getting lost there. There are these moments when coaches – especially new coaches – are lost in the moment and the team falters because of them. Jim Schwartz did it with the flag of defiance, Jim Caldwell did it aboard Aaron Rodgers’ Hill Mary and Matt Patricia did it a lot every week. that happens. It’s that tough time when every training decision is crucial, and not everyone can handle the pressure.
Time to shoot your foot in Detroit should be over. Mistakes happen, but the Lions training crew needs to clean up as much of them as possible to make sure these mistakes don’t lead to embarrassing losses.
I’m putting it on this year’s list, too. It’ll likely be on next year’s list as well, and the list that follows. A progression that would be great to see is the development of young players in the team who are not really expected to be a big part of the team. Don’t get me wrong. Progressing young men like Aidan Hutchinson and Amon-Ra St. Brown is definitely welcome. However, the creation of new stars has an even greater appeal.
I’m talking about guys like Jerry Jacobs, Malcolm Rodriguez and Demetrius Taylor. Taking non-manufacturers or three guys a day and making them starters is an advantage that not every team has. It’s definitely a quality that the Lions didn’t have in the past. The good teams hit their picks in the early round. Great teams find hidden gems on the third day and beyond. The more young players lions can find, the better they will be in the short and long term. There is no better way to create a solid corporate franchise than to strike and grow young talent.