Matt Patricia has had a frustrating two year run with the Detroit Lions, but is the team frustrated enough to make a move with their coach when all is said and done?
While the answer to that question may be up in the air, it’s not exactly hard to see that Patricia is sitting on a pretty warm seat at the moment. Such was the fact explained by ESPN and analyst Michael Rothstein. In examining some of the job statuses of current head coaches, Patricia placed decently high on the list of bosses who are under pressure given their struggles.
According to Rothstein, Patricia isn’t on a broiling seat like a few other coaches, but it’s quite warm at this point in time. Here’s a look at what he wrote:
“Patricia’s record has left him facing weekly questions about his future. It’s entirely possible the Ford family will give him another season to implement his vision with general manager Bob Quinn, but securing two straight losing seasons and two years without a playoff berth after his predecessor had winning seasons in three of four years has put him in trouble.”
Detroit’s actual motivation to make a move is firmly up in the air, but it’s true that with his team’s record and some of the frustration, Patricia hasn’t made a quick first impression on the fans, even as some in the media want to see him remain in the role.
It’s safe to say that all the losing has put him on a decently hot seat.
Bob Quinn’s Lions Tenure
Quinn came to Detroit after Martha Ford stunningly blew out Detroit’s front office following a debacle in the 2015 season. Quinn entered from New England and elected to observe Caldwell for two full seasons before making a move. Though Caldwell would finish with a winning record, Quinn eventually sacked him at the end of the season in 2017.
All the while, Quinn has been the one crafting the roster, and there have been some major hits as well as some obvious misses for the general manager. In 2016, Quinn’s first draft involved the selection of Taylor Decker along the offensive front. Decker has been solid, but far from elite. The 2016 draft also saw the Lions pick up Graham Glasgow who’s been a starter, as well as a solid piece.
From there, Quinn has managed to find a few difference makers every draft season. 2017 brought Jarrad Davis, who has been alright as well as Kenny Golladay, who has arguably been Quinn’s best pick. In subsequent drafts, players like Glasgow, Jamal Agnew, Frank Ragnow, Da’Shawn Hand, Tracy Walker, Kerryon Johnson and Tyrell Crosby have been solid contributors and shown glimpses.
In free agency, Quinn’s work has been more hit or miss. He has picked up names like Marvin Jones, Justin Coleman, Trey Flowers and Devon Kennard but has surprised by adding names like Jesse James, Christian Jones and Rashaan Melvin, all of whom have struggled to fit in. Quinn has also made some failed signings at running back.
As a whole, it’s perhaps a bit more on Quinn that Detroit has struggled so badly this season. His roster has not had the advantage of key depth that so many teams in the NFL feature.
Matt Patricia’s Lions Tenure
Patricia came to the Lions fresh off success in New England in 2018, and struggled out of the gate to capture the attention of the locker room. A bumpy start paved the way to a more solid finish in 2018 with the team only winning six games, but defeating squads like the New England Patriots, Green Bay Packers and Carolina Panthers, which offered hope.
Patricia has helped the Lions stay in games for the most part in 2019, something which the team struggled with in 2018, but has not gotten them over the hump at closing. That’s perhaps his biggest wart so far as a boss, combined with a lousy defense that has not picked up the program whatsoever. Patricia might get more of a pass considering the absurd amount of injuries he’s dealt with, but it’s hard to ignore that in his tenure as coach, the Lions have had the same discipline problems plague them that always have through the years.
The bet is that both Patricia and Quinn get a mulligan on 2019 considering the rash of injuries that have set the team back, while also living with the understanding that 2020 is likely the make or break year for this group.
That might not be the case when all is said and done, however, if Martha Ford has her way. At this point, however, nobody knows what the decision makers are thinking.
The coach himself could be firmly on a warming seat at this point.