Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Um, Detroit's new head coach sounds kind of insane. He went to Vietnam for a year and he won't talk about it; he has a mysterious limp and an elastic band around his left leg that he also refuses to talk about; he shows videos of predators tearing their prey apart to his players; he says things like, "Are you dying to be a great player? Do you claw the wall every day? Do you understand what that means? I want to get 53 men that live and die for footbal!" !!! He sounds like the crazy head coach from some early-nineties sports comedy, the one who acts like a complete hardass jerk for the whole movie until the hero needs some motivation because some other kid made fun of his poverty and so he just doesn't think he wants to show up for the last game of the season so then the coach sits him down and finally reveals the story of his limp, which involves the stripper from Saigon he was in love with and her pimp and killing men with his bare hands while he looks in their eyes and America and freedom and that mysterious ambivalent force we sometimes call God, and then the kid makes it to the final game with the killer instinct glinting in his eyes and he scores the winning touchdown after mowing down the guy who made fun of him.

Then there's Joe Cullen, who goes through drive thrus naked, and Mike Martz, who's, you know, Mike Martz, apparently so crazy that when he had to go to the hospital last season the team's front office used it as a time to cut him off from the team completely, and actually wouldn't let Martz talk to his players on the phone. And he was still technically the head coach... Anyway, I read it somewhere else and I think it's true: at the very least, Detroit should have an entertaining coaching staff.

But all the praise these random players are willing to lay on Marinelli has me a little scared, actually. Not that I'm worried about Detroit beating Chicago this week, or even this season, probably; they simply don't have the offense. Jon Kitna? Right... But they won't be the Mariucci Lions any more. It sounds like Marinelli will have them fighting to the last minute every game. And the Detroit defense was really beating up on Seattle last week. It's not that they were (completely) shutting them down or anything, it was just obvious they were playing way harder and much more physically than Seattle expected or was ready for. This week's game should at least be more of a game than last week in GB, when you could see the Packers pretty much giving up some time in the first five minutes of the game.

Plus, on top of Marinelli apparently being crazy and inspiring blind worship in his players, he and Lovie were roommates under Dungy when they first came to NFL, still call each other roomie, and refer to each other as best friend whenever the other is mentioned in an interview. I can't imagine that both coaches won't have their players a little extra riled up to show the other just what he's got.

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