Why “Hard Knocks” Was The Worst Thing Possible For The Detroit Lions

This preseason, the Detroit Lions were featured on one of the most popular football television shows – “Hard Knocks.” The show, produced by NFL Films and HBO, started in 2001 and gives a behind the scenes look of what goes on in the duration of an NFL preseason. The series focuses on players, coaches, their interactions, and players that are striving to make the team.

The team received a fair amount of media attention for multiple moments. However, much of the attention was around head coach Dan Campbell. Campbell’s coaching tactics, intensity and motivational way with words got many people excited for the season to come.

The excitement that came with the “Hard Knocks” popularity may have gotten people’s expectations too high, and may be hurting this team.

Now five weeks into the season, some fans on social media have been calling for the firing of head coach Dan Campbell after a 29-0 loss to the New England Patriots. The Lions sit at 1-5 going into the bye week, and this start is lackluster in comparison to what many people were predicting.

This excitement before the season even started has allowed people to have a misguided perception of the rebuild progression.

While the offense has been elite so far this season, there are glaring holes on the whole team, specifically the defense. Also, this team has been ravished by injuries, and there is not enough depth yet. To fill the holes on this team, General Manager Brad Holmes and Dan Campbell will need more time. Rebuilds do not happen in just one season.

For comparison, many of the most recent successful rebuilds took multiple seasons. Both Kyle Shanahan, head coach of the San Francisco 49ers, and Zac Taylor, head coach of the Cincinnati Bengals, took three seasons to reach the playoffs.

Holmes and Campbell have already made multiple moves and picks that give them at least three years to rebuild, if not more.

Campbell does need to improve upon coaching decisions, specifically going for it on fourth down. Aggressiveness and poor decisions from him have cost the team multiple wins so far this season. With time, Campbell will get more comfortable with making these decisions. While it would be ideal for everything to be perfect, Lions fans have to be patient. If given the time, this team will turn around.
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