Lions Discipline Major Cause for Concern in 2019 Season

Matthew Stafford

Getty Matthew Stafford chats with an official.

The Detroit Lions have had a ton of problems this season, and it’s hard to say where the biggest frustrations have lied with the team for most of 2019.

From injuries to coaching right down to execution, the Lions haven’t been able to get it done routinely this season, which is something that has left fans downright frustrated and fit to be tied. It’s also led to their awful record so far this year, which is right up there with some of the worst marks in the entire league. Quietly, though, there’s been another trouble spot for the team and it revolves around the yellow flags.

Certainly, one of the biggest sore spots the team has endured has had to do with discipline. Detroit has been one of the worst teams this season in terms of penalties. The Lions are just 15 penalties off the league lead, and currently in a tie for seventh position in terms of the most penalties in the league with 100.

Here’s a look at the stat:

For a team like Detroit that hasn’t won close games, this stat is a killer. It could be the biggest reason the Lions have not been able to maximize their potential and have a much better season.

Many will blame biased officials, and there is no doubt the Lions have been victimized by some close calls this season. Even in spite of that, the team should be doing much better to be cleaner in between the lines.

Penalties a Lions Issue in 2019

For those searching for a reason that the Lions haven’t lived up to expectations, the penalty excuse could be seen as particularly appropriate. Routinely, the team racks up close to double digit penalties in games. In the few wins the Lions have had, discipline has nearly cost them. In the losses they’ve racked up, it’s been one of the more overwhelming problems to note in addition to turnovers and a lack of touchdowns.

As for the reasoning for his team’s struggle with this, Matt Patricia routinely cannot provide an explanation. He will say the Lions must continue to try and play within the confines of the rules, but the team rarely gets it done. Racking up 100 total penalties and being this close to the league lead is a very disappointing show of sloppiness for the team.

Lions Penalty Problems

Seeing Detroit struggle with penalties is nothing new, but something which remains frustrating for everyone to note. Prior to Patricia coming to Detroit, Jim Caldwell’s teams would struggle with penalties. It seems the mindset hasn’t been cleaned up in a few seasons under Patricia, which is probably the most frustrating thing for many fans to think about.

Most of the time, if the Lions are in a close game, they can be counted on to make a mistake such as a penalty which will turn things in the opposite direction. That’s something plenty wanted to see go out the window, but as the saying goes, the oldest habits might die the hardest.

Regardless, the fact that Patricia and the Lions haven’t gotten these issues cleaned up is very troubling for Detroit. For anyone looking for an extra reason to be frustrated with the team this year, this latest fact is it.

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