Today is Black Monday, which means that a number of NFL coaches have gotten fired. One of those coaches is Jim Schwartz, whose Detroit Lions completely failed down the stretch, losing six of seven games and missing the playoffs despite playing in a mostly Rodgers-and-Cutler-less NFC North.
It’s a shame, because Schwartz was likable and fiery, two of our favorite qualities in a football coach. But as team president Tom Lewand put it, the Lions “didn’t win enough football games” under Schwartz. And this season, they really should have done better than 7-9.
Here’s the preliminary 2014 draft order, based on record and strength of schedule from this season. You’ll notice that the Lions had the fourth easiest strength of schedule in the league (.457):
The only teams that had easier schedules than the Lions this year: the Chiefs, the Eagles, the Packers. All three of those teams are playoff-bound. Say what you will about the crappy seasons the Texans (.559 — the league’s toughest) and Buccaneers (.574) had, but their strength of schedules played a role in their demise. What’s the Lions excuse?
A new coach won’t fix everything for the talented but flawed Lions, but it’s a change they had to make.
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