Will Lions or Packers Be More Motivated?
The now 0-15 Lions have many believing that a winless season is not only possible, but probable. This is 0for08, FanHouse's eye on the Detroit Lions and their quest for a winless season.
Even if you vehemently dislike the Ford family or Rod Marinelli, you're probably not openly rooting for the Detroit Lions to suffer through the humiliation of an 0-16 season. If you are, may Santa deliver you the proverbial lump of coal Thursday morning.
Detroit's last chance to avoid the embarrassing first-time achievement comes Sunday at Lambeau Field, where they will take on the Packers. Detroit hasn't won in Wisconsin since 1991, and they haven't won anywhere since 2007. They're a nine-point underdog to a team that has lost five straight.
Marinelli has already talked to his team about avoiding the 0-fer. Surely, the topic has been brought up as the team prepares for the Packers.
On the flip side, while they haven't talked much about it yet, the Packers have plenty to discuss this week, too.
The Lions have lost every regular-season game, many in spectacular fashion.
Green Bay knows all about this. Detroit led in the fourth quarter before the Packers scored the last 24 points of a 48-25 win.
So while Detroit talks about avoiding history, the Packers have to do the same.
The Lions are the only team ever to go 0-15. That means the Packers are trying to avoid being the first team ever to lose to an 0-15 team. Since "no one ever goes 0-16 in the NFL", the Packers are also trying to avoid being THAT team.
Shouldn't that be a bit of a motivator, too? If you're a part of this Green Bay team, and the chance to avoid a season-ending six-game skid isn't enough to get your ready, how about making sure you aren't the team that loses to the worst team (maybe) in NFL history?
Furthermore, which is the bigger motivator for a professional athlete? Seems to me that both the Packers and Lions are going into Sunday's game trying to avoid a measure of embarrassment. I can't imagine being in a position where I would have to use such tactics to get a team ready to play, but when you're 0-15 or 5-10, what other ideas do you have?
You can't tell your team to win in order to get an extra day off during the following week. The season is over after Sunday.
You're already paying them enough. You don't control the pursestrings, so you can't offer anyone a new contract for a good game.
Maybe this is why NFL coaches make millions of dollars. I'd hate to be in Marinelli's position, but Packers head coach Mike McCarthy isn't much better off. There's pressure on them both, and there's embarrassment waiting whoever doesn't get the job done Sunday.