Millen presided over a litany of awful personnel and coaching decisions. The drafts became a joke with the Lions selecting four wide receivers in the Top 10, two of whom (Charles Rogers and Mike Williams) are no longer in the NFL. Bobby Layne — who led Detroit to its last championship in 1957 — would still be the best option at quarterback if he hadn't passed away 22 years ago. As evidenced by Steve Mariucci's failings, a proven head coach couldn't win under Millen let alone those with no previous experience like Marty Mornhinweg and Rod Marinelli. Upon his arrival, Millen fired Gary Moeller even though the former University of Michigan coach had rallied Detroit to a 4-3 record after Bobby Ross quit. Millen gave the same short shrift to Dick Jauron, who was interim coach in late 2005 after Mariucci's in-season departure. Jauron is now an early Coach of the Year candidate for the 3-0 Buffalo Bills. During the Millen era, Detroit was eliminated from the playoff race by midseason every year except 2007. The Lions started 6-2 last season but then suffered a 1-7 collapse that should have cost Millen his job. Instead, he was granted another reprieve by a stubborn owner blinded to the franchise's follies because he wanted to see Millen succeed.Also see. I typically don't devote so much TDE space to sports, but I think the Millen affair exhibited a high degree of hubris (who cares what the unwashed fans think?) that resulted in one of the most disturbing management episodes in pro sports history. There have been other bad management spans (the Wrigley family's disregard of the Cubs comes immediately to mind), but this one has to rank in the top five. __________ The Office season premier is tonight. I'm really looking forward to it. New York Magazine features Ed Helms, the actor who plays Andy Bernard, the obnoxious guy who is trying to woo Angela. Decent piece. Excerpt:
Bernard joined the show in 2006, primarily as a living reminder to affable Jim Halpert (John Krasinski) that, while you may be able to escape certain office jackasses, you can never escape office jackassery in general. For example, when Jim brought a tuna sandwich to work on his first day at the new office, Bernard dubbed him “Big Tuna,” then called him that relentlessly and with an air of bullying jocularity. This might not, in itself, seem like a hanging offense. But if you’ve ever toiled under the persistent buzz of fluorescent lights, in the soulless maze of a cubicle farm, you understand that these slights have a cumulative effect. They add up. And they crush your soul.__________ Received in an email: Headlines from 2029 Ozone created by electric cars now killing millions in the seventh largest country in the world, Mexifornia, formerly known as California. White minorities still trying to have English recognized as Mexifornia's third language. Spotted Owl plague threatens northwestern United States crops and livestock. Baby conceived naturally! Scientists stumped. Couple petitions court to reinstate heterosexual marriage. Iran still closed off; physicists estimate it will take at least 10 more years before radioactivity decreases to safe levels. France pleads for global help after being taken over by Jamaica . No other country comes forward to help the beleaguered nation! Castro finally dies at age 112; Cuban cigars can now be imported legally, but President Chelsea Clinton has banned all smoking. George Z. Bush says he will run for President in 2036. Postal Service raises price of first class stamp to $17.89 and reduces mail delivery to Wednesdays only. 85-year $75. 8 billion study: Diet and exercise is the key to weight loss. Average weight of Americans drops to 250 lbs. Global cooling blamed for citrus crop failure for third consecutive year in Mexifornia and Floruba. Japanese scientists have created a camera with such a fast shutter speed they now can photograph a woman with her mouth shut. Abortion clinics now available in every high school in United States . Senate still blocking drilling in ANWR even though gas is selling for 4532 Pesos per liter and gas stations are only open on Tuesdays and Fridays. Massachusetts executes last remaining conservative. Supreme Court rules punishment of criminals violates their civil rights. Average height of NBA players is now nine feet, seven inches. New federal law requires that all nail clippers, screwdrivers, fly swatters and rolled-up newspapers must be registered by January 2030. IRS sets lowest tax rate at 75 percent. Floruba voters still having trouble with voting machines.
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