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ESPN’s First Take heaps enormous shade on Detroit Lions

Thursday Morning on ESPN’s First Take, Stephen A. Smith and Max Kellerman verbally destroyed the Detroit Lions organization over its futility and Jim Caldwell’s firing.

Geez, Stephen A. Smith! Let us know how you really feel.

On a Thursday morning episode of ESPN’s First Take, Smith, along with his co-host Max Kellerman, discussed the Detroit Lions as an entire franchise. And saying that it wasn’t a pretty sight would be a gross understatement. 

Just like Nas’ famous diss track to Jay-Z, it was straight “ether”. 

Kellerman brings up the now-famous “9 wins isn’t good enough” quote.

In a near seven minute-plus discussion, which is now on ESPN’s YouTube page, First Take moderator Molly Querim opened with a question, asking whether the Lions organization should apologize for hiring current head coach Matt Patricia. As of right now, Patricia is 13-28-1 in three seasons in Detroit. Under his coaching, the Lions are on pace to finish in the last place of the NFC North for the third straight season. 

Kellerman decided to go in a different direction with his response. Instead, he suggested that the Lions organization owes former head coach Jim Caldwell an apology.

“Well, sure, but the real thing they need to do is apologize to Jim Caldwell because he was doing what they needed him to do.”, said Kellerman.

“He was winning nine games a season on average. In four seasons, by the way, an African-American head coach, who was fired because nine wins wasn’t enough, because two playoff appearances in four years for a team that hasn’t won…they’ve won one playoff game in 60 years. It is the least talked about record of futility in sports.”

Let’s not forget. After four seasons as head coach, the Lions fired Jim Caldwell, whose team finished second in the NFC North three times, with two playoff berths.  

Kellerman did follow up his statement by saying that the coach’s race didn’t matter if the new coach is a better fit, but he finished by stating that this isn’t the case in this situation. 

And he’s right. The Lions not only regressed, but they ultimately took a nose dive off a cliff. 

With this sentiment being a fact, Stephen A. Smith followed up with his thoughts on the subject, and it was a bunch of painful truths. 

Stephen A. Smith ate the Lions up for an early Thanksgiving dinner.

After hearing Kellerman’s opinion on the Lions organization, suggesting that his take was too soft and too kind, any First Take viewer knew that Stephen A. Smith would follow with some damaging remarks. 

And boy did he deliver.

“I don’t think they owe Jim Caldwell an apology, I think they owe the city of Detroit, Michigan, the state of Michigan, the National Football League, and the American public an apology for being the Detroit Lions.”, offered Smith.

“They have been systematically pathetic on every level. And it has spanned decades. Do you understand that the Detroit Lions haven’t been relevant since Barry Sanders was running the football for them. That’s how bad they have been…obviously, Calvin Johnson, Megatron, had to retire, and we hope that he’ll end up in the Hall of Fame because he was that much of a big-time stud. But even then, they weren’t winning any playoff games.”

Smith went even further to insinuate it’s an insult to Jim Caldwell to be in the same sentence as Matt Patricia. 

And he’s right.

The Lions have not indicated that they’re ready to move away from Patricia as the head coach. Nonetheless, the First Take crew should not expect a holiday card from the Ford family after this segment. 

Follow Kory Woods on Twitter: @koryewoods and Instagram: @kory.woods

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