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News » Lions are turkeys in foul game

Lions are turkeys in foul game

Lions are turkeys in foul game
The humble bird that is the centerpiece of a day commonly known as Turkey Day is often blamed for the drowsiness that follows the feast it provides.

Trytophan, an amino acid found in turkeys, supposedly makes many people sleepier than a visit from the Sandman. Recent research says alcohol consumption plays a big part, too.

I say trytophan is only an accomplice. The biggest factor in reducing the republic to a collection of couch potatoes snoring away is the regrettable, lamentable and execrable presence of the Detroit Lions in our living rooms in the 12:30 p.m. Thanksgiving Day NFL game.

As for the alcohol, watching the Lions will drive you to drink.

Sadly, the Tennessee Titans , guests today of the worst franchise in the league - and that includes the Browns and Oakland Raiders - lost last week for the first time. Otherwise, the contest would feature the 11-and-0 Titans vs. the 0-and-11 Lions.

Detroit has been host to a Thanksgiving Day game since 1934. That the Lions have a slight winning record shows that not having to travel on a short week is a massive advantage. But the closest Thanksgiving game of the previous four years in Detroit was an 11-point loss.

Enough is enough. The Lions, as is the case with the Browns' presence in prime-time games a-plenty this season, are no longer worthy of the exposure.

Oakland admittedly provides the rubbernecker appeal of "Bizarro" Al Davis, a concept taken from the backward, cube-shaped planet, Bizarro World, in Superman comics. Any day now, "Bizarro" Al might try to put livestock on his coaching staff, the way the mad Roman Emperor Caligula tried to make his horse a consul.

But Oakland did go to the Super Bowl in this century, a feat that has eluded the Browns and Lions for, well, I believe the word is "ever."

Historical ineptitude?

For better than a quarter-century in the late '50s, through the '60s, '70s, and part of the '80s, Detroit made the playoffs twice and scored one touchdown in the two losses. It gives the reborn Browns something new to shoot for.

Cockamamie decisions?

The Browns have gone through Spergon Wynn, Doug Pederson, Luke McCown, Trent Dilfer, Charlie Frye and other suspects as starting quarterback. But the Derek Anderson/Brady Quinn carousel this year cannot compare to the pie fight staged in Detroit.

Jon Kitna was the season starter, but was soon cut. (Even the Browns traded Frye for a low draft choice.) Since then, Dan Orlovsky (of the UConn Orlovskys), Drew Stanton (career underachiever at Michigan State), and Daunte Culpepper (star of the Minnesota Vikings' own version of "Love Boat") have all gotten a shot. Drew Henson (no relation to Drew Stanton, and a washout at both baseball and Football to boot) might be next.

Absentee executives?

Punxsutawney Phil Savage, the Browns' rarely visible man, is always out scouting.

Matt Millen made some of the worst draft picks ever (Charles Rogers, Roy Williams, Mike Williams, all wide receivers; Joey Harrington, better at playing piano than quarterback) and had a 31-84 record. He commuted from his home in Pennsylvania. The Lions finally fired Millen.

It is time for the NFL to give a pink slip to Detroit's other turkeys.

To reach Bill Livingston: blivingston@plaind.com, 216-999-4672

Previous columns online: cleveland.com/columns

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: November 29, 2008

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