East Rutherford, NJ–The Detroit Lions brought in Jim Caldwell to change the team culture.
And so far, it looks like the Lions’ first-year head coach is doing a pretty good job of it.
The Lions are off to a 3-1 start, with wins over the New York Giants, Green Bay Packers, and, this Sunday aside the New Jersey Turnpike, the New York Jets.
Breitbart Sports asked the coach this week the key to changing a football culture.
“It’s obviously a complex issue,” Caldwell said. “If it was simple and easy, there would be a lot of people getting it done. You have to have a compelling vision, which I think is important. You have to be able to strategically show them where you would like to go, how you would like to get there.”
Caldwell is a no-nonsense guy with a steely resolve, a 59-year-old coach who has certainly paid his dues. There isn’t much the former Indianapolis Colts head coach hasn’t seen.
There isn’t much on the good side of .500 that the Detroit Lions have seen in recent decades. The Lions play as one of four NFL franchises without a Super Bowl appearance. They haven’t won a division title since the first year of the Clinton presidency. The last time Detroit celebrated a playoff victory, Madonna’s “Justify My Love” topped the Billboard charts and Home Alone ruled the box office.
The Lions lacked discipline under their previous coach, Jim Schwartz, a little bit of a hothead who might have been in over his head.
“Discipline” is the buzzword in the Lions’ locker room this year.
“Coach Caldwell is great, man,” said wide receiver Calvin Johnson, Detroit’s best player. “He set a standard from the jump. We’re going to be definitely a better disciplined team as far as not killing ourselves.”
Obviously they have a long way to go, but you can see Caldwell’s vision starting to take hold.
“You have to have a plan in place,” Caldwell said. “Then, you have to have, obviously, have a relentless pursuit of chasing it. Those things are things we try to do on a daily basis.”
So far, so good.
Photo credit: Alan Schaefer