The Detroit Lions are one of the NFL’s oldest franchises, so being inducted into the team’s ring of honor also known as the Pride of the Lions is a significant milestone for any player.
Through the years, some of football’s biggest legends have been inducted into the club, and now, the team is going to put another legend in this season in the form of linebacker Chris Spielman.
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The Lions revealed on Thursday, October 21 that they would be placing Spielman in the team’s ring of honor.
As was written in a statement on DetroitLions.com by Rod Wood, the Lions are very happy to be welcoming Spielman into this exclusive club.
“The Detroit Lions could not be prouder of Chris Spielman’s accomplishments on the field and in the community. He was pivotal to the success the team enjoyed during his time as a player and his induction into the Pride of the Lions cements his place in our history,” said Detroit Lions Team President and CEO Rod Wood. “We are thrilled Chris has rejoined the organization as a key member to build the future and we are proud to present him with the highest individual honor we can give to a Lions Legend.”
Being inducted into the ring of honor is the highest honor a former Lion can receive, and there is no doubt Spielman earned this recognition.
Watch Spielman Reveal Induction Into Ring of Honor
So how did the Lions tell Spielman he was getting inducted? It was a good old-fashioned trick, but one that was very special for the former linebacker.
The team staged it as if Spielman was reading a promo for the team’s alumni weekend on Sunday, October 31 against the Philadelphia Eagles. From there, the team let Spielman see on the teleprompter that he was going to be joining the club officially.
Here’s a look at the special moment:
Spielman begins to cry when he realizes he is going in the ring of honor and admitted he was thinking of his wife Stefanie, who passed away from breast cancer and was his biggest advocate during his time in Detroit. It was an emotional moment for Spielman and likely for his many fans as well.
Spielman Career Stats & Highlights
Spielman was a dominating presence from the moment he stepped on the football field in Detroit as a linebacker in 1988 out of Ohio State. He played eight seasons with the Lions and was a four time Pro Bowl player as well as a three time All-Pro on defense. Statistically, he was dominating as well, racking up 1,181 tackles in his career and 10.5 sacks to go with 13 forced fumbles and 6 interceptions. Spielman finished his career in Buffalo and Cleveland, but became a natural fit in the broadcast booth working with ESPN’s college football coverage and later transitioning to Fox Sports and their NFL coverage.
Here’s a look at some of his career highlights:
Unlike his brother who got his start in Detroit in scouting and worked in several front offices, Spielman’s only high level experience in football management came in the AFL where he coached the Columbus Destroyers. In 2000, Spielman did interview for the Ohio State head coaching role that eventually went to Jim Tressel. Now, he works with Detroit’s front office.
It’s special to see Spielman get this honor, and will be fun to watch him get inducted later this month.