Detroit, at 4-7, is headed toward a fifth straight 10-loss season. Poisonous personalities and cliques fester in the locker room. No, it wasn't all Steve Mariucci's fault - the dysfunction in Detroit goes far up the chain of command. But yes, Mariucci deserved to be fired.
Mariucci was 15-28 in two-plus seasons, and the Lions are in a free fall after an ugly Thanksgiving day loss to the Falcons. All those high draft picks aren't panning out and the finger-pointing is getting worse. "There needed to be more discipline on this team," said one of the main disappointments, QB Joey Harrington.
Previously, Mariucci had some success in San Francisco, but that was with a talented, experienced team. He didn't have a clue how to develop the Lions, winning five games his first season, six in his second, and four this season. The Lions need to revisit history and bring in a no-nonsense disciplinarian, as they did when Bobby Ross replaced Wayne Fontes.
And to think: The Bucs were real close to hiring Mariucci in 2002. Thank goodness the Mariucci Mess played out in Detroit instead. And for the Lions' sake, thank goodness it's over.