Misery has once again found the Detroit Lions this season, and beleaguered fans are turning on everyone as their season continues to get worse and worse.
Naturally, owner Martha Ford wasn’t even exempt. During the second half of Sunday’s ugly 38-17 defeat against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, several fans brought back out the paper bag faces. A couple other bold fans decided to take direct aim at Ford and her ownership of the team.
Fox television cameras caught the moment a couple of fans unveiled a “sell the team” banner along with Ford’s face. It was captured on television only briefly, but long enough for WXYZ’s Brad Galli to get a still shot.
Here’s a look at the banner:
The “sell the team” sentiment has gained steam in recent months as the Lions have fallen apart on the field. Folks are taking out their frustration on Ford and her ownership group, and this is yet another example of that.
Martha Ford’s Ownership of Lions
Ever since her husband William Clay Ford passed away in 2014, Ford, 94, has been the primary owner of the Lions. The team has been in the family since 1963, and most fans would admit that through the years, there hasn’t been a ton of good that has played out while the Fords have been primary owners. The Lions have just one playoff win in that span, and haven’t won a division title since 1994. Misery has been the most common emotion associated with the Lions during the family’s tenure as owners.
Since taking over from her husband, however, Ford has shown more of a propensity to shake things up rather let things sit. She hired Quinn from outside the organization a few years back. She also allowed the team to be aggressive in their pursuit of Patricia. She’s allowed the team to spend to lure free agents to town and keep their own stars. Mr. Ford was more inclined to sit back and let his trusted associates run the show however they saw fit for however long. Ford maintains her drive is strong to be able to win, and her ultimate goal is to win a Super Bowl. At her advancing age, that might be difficult unless the Lions get things right in a major hurry.
Why Martha Ford Won’t Sell the Lions
Like it or not, the Lions are a family business for the Ford crew. Selling the team before Ford passes away stands almost no chance of happening. Even so, whenever Mrs. Ford passes away, the team is likely to be passed down through the generations again to a new breed of Ford relatives. In all likelihood Martha’s daughters or her son William Clay Ford Jr. will take over as new owners. In the past, Ford Jr. has preferred to operate behind the scenes, which could mean the Lions may be set to be taken over by the next generation of Ford females.
Lions fans like to cling to hopes the Ford family will sell out, but the Lions are a Detroit product owned by a Detroit family that played a direct hand in the rise of the city. It’s impossible to see that changing in the short term, no matter how frustrated folks might be with what’s transpired with the team whether now or through the decades.
It might be a letdown to some, but it’s simply the fact. No matter how many folks might scream, plead and hang banners for the team to change hands, it’s not likely to happen.
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