The Lions got some big things done this offseason in restructuring Calvin’s contract, resigning key players and doing a decent job in the draft. But one thing that was not done so far this offseason, at least that we know of, is coach Jim Schwartz getting a new contract.
Going into next season, Schwartz will be a ‘lame-duck’ coach with only one year remaining on his deal. When asked about his contract at a presser he responded with, “I don’t talk about my contract,” and when asked if a deal was done he elaborated by saying “I don’t talk about my contract.”
My question to all out there reading, does the Schwartz deserve a contract extension?
Lets take a quick look back at his history with the Lions:
Schwartz comes in after the first 0-16 season in NFL history and leads the Lions to a 2-14 season. A terrible record, but an improvement (obviously) over the previous season as the influx of talent begins for this team. This season is basically a wash for the Schwartz and Mayhew and Co. because of the amount of talent thatwasn’ton this team.
As the players Schwartz wanted come into the fold, the season begins the same in 2010. The Lions lost the first four games of the season before getting a victory, but the Lions did set the NFL record for consecutive road games lost with 26 straight losses. The end of the season brought the Lions a four game winning streak including two on the road, once over the Packers to end a 10-game losing streak to them and a 19-game losing streak in the division and finally a win over the Vikings to end the season 6-10. By beating the Vikings, Detroit ended up third in the division.
With a healthy Matt Stafford for the first time in his career, the Lions go 10-6 and have their first postseason birth since 1999 and their first 10-win season since 1995. Stafford was the fifth quarterback ever to throw for 5,000 yards and the Lions scored the most points in franchise history with 474 that season. Low-lights for the season included ‘handshake-gate’ and the insane amount of personal fouls throughout the year. But the Lions got better on the field for the third consecutive season under Jim Schwartz.
Now depending on where you look, people throughout the Internet have differing opinions on Schwartz. ESPN allowed fans to give out a ‘coach approval rating’ throughout the season and Schwartz had an approval rating of 75%, tenth in the NFL.
National Football Post put out a coaching Power Rankings, and they ranked Schwartz the best coach in all of the NFL and has this to say about him:
You may scoff at the fact that Schwartz tops our list, but consider the evidence: This guy took an 0-16 franchise with a roster that couldn’t beat half the teams in Canada and turned it into a legitimate Super Bowl contender in just three years. He may not have a Vince Lombardi Trophy on his mantel just yet, but nobody has done more with less in such a short time span than Jim Schwartz, who still doesn’t get enough credit for what he’s done with the former laughing stock of the NFL.
High praise for a guy who has a winning percentage of .375 in his career, but I’m not saying he hasn’t done a good job for this franchise.
I think that the Schwartz is the right man to lead this team and does deserve to have his contract extended, but what do you think?