A Red Flag For Lions Fans?

Why Brad Holmes first big move as Lions’ GM has me concerned

A new era has started in Detroit and the first few months of the new regime don’t have me optimistic. Granted, as a Lions fan, pessimism is in our nature. We’ve seen it all before. The new pair of GM Brad Holmes and Head Coach Dan Campbell have already earned national attention…for all of the wrong reasons thanks to the biting of knee caps. Despite this poor analogy and being quite under-qualified, Dan Campbell is not the epicenter of my concern with the Lions. My biggest concern lies on history repeating itself and if Holmes’ is going to display patterns we’re all too familiar with following Bob Quinn.

When Quinn and Patricia came to town, they brought the “Patriot way” with them. What worked in New England, they were going to bring to Detroit. However, as we’re now seeing with the Patriots, their “way” seems to be more “Tom Brady” than a successful culture. Tom’s now playing in the Super Bowl with his new team as the Pats are one of the least talented teams in the league with little light at the end of the tunnel. That is the Patriots Way Quintnricia brought with them. They brought in former Patriot after former Patriot to the point where it was laughable. The experiment failed miserably.

Now the Lions introduce Brad Holmes as General Manager, and his first big move? Moving Matthew Stafford to the Los Angeles Rams. Where did Brad Holmes come from before being hired in Detroit? Why, The Los Angeles Rams. Coincidence? I don’t think so. I know what you’re thinking, the Lions didn’t get fleeced in this deal. They had to move on from Stafford and got two first round picks, a third, and a potential starting quarterback in Jared Goff. That’s not a bad return, in fact, it’s pretty good and can’t complain about it. However, there are now reports that better offers were on the table from places like Carolina, who reportedly offered their first round pick (the 8th pick in this years draft) which would have given the Lions two picks in the top ten this year. Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater also might have been involved in that deal. The Washington Football Team, San Francisco 49ers, and Indianapolis Colts also had offers in; while the New York Jets and Chicago Bears made calls to test the temperature of the water.

Most fans will say in the end the Lions won the deal, and I would be one of them. However, I’m going to be hoping they start making moves with other teams instead of focusing everything on turning the Lions into the Rams. If that’s what the front office is going to try then we are doomed to repeat history. Brad Holmes will suffer the same fate as Bob Quinn. Dan Campbell is not Sean McVay. The Rams success, in my opinion, stems from McVay and the system he’s running and what he brings to the table. You can try to copy that but you’re just going to end up with a lesser version of the original product. The sequel is never as good as the original. Except for Deuce Bigalow.

How are you feeling about the start of the new regime? Reach out on twitter @CortFreeman

Pick ‘Em Pickle: NFL Week 9

This Sunday just feels…different, doesn’t it? I don’t know what it is but I can feel something in the air…positivity…optimism…hope. Let’s ride this wave of change to some victories in Week 9!

Lions @ Vikings Line: MIN -3.5

The Lions certainly are a tough team to bet on. The Vikings are hot off a big divisional win against the Packers, where Dalvin Cook ran all over the Pack. Detroit seems to be a team to win when they should lose and lose when they need a win. I heard someone on 971 The Ticket say the team is “going to get a spite win. They’re drinking Latte Larry’s.” I appreciate that, and does seem to be a theme of this team. I don’t see them getting a spite win here. I think we see a repeat of what the Vikings accomplished last week here.

PICK: MIN -3.5 MIN 24 DET 17

Broncos @ Falcons Line: ATL -4.0

The Broncos had a great comeback win last week against the Chargers, but remain largely inconsistent on the season. Speaking of inconsistent, they get the Falcons this week. I’ve been saying the Falcons are better than their record, and I think that improves here.

PICK: ATL -4.0 ATL 31 DEN 24

Seahawks @ Bills Line: SEA -3

Pretty sure Russ has sealed up his MVP already and we’re only in Week 9. I’m not betting against that offense. Especially the way the Bills have been struggling to get things going lately.

PICK: SEA -3 SEA 28 BUFF 20

Bears @ Titans Line: TEN -6.5

Two pretty evenly matched up teams. I like both of these defenses and think this could be a battle in the trenches. I like the Titans in the game but think they’re getting a little too many points for the way this game will go.

PICK: CHI +6.5 TEN 20 CHI 17

Ravens @ Colts Line: EVEN

The Colts are better than I give them credit for. They continue to prove that. I still think Lamar and the Ravens bounce back here. They need a big win and a loss here could really impact the season. In a straight up pick ’em pickle, I’m taking the Ravens.

PICK: BAL. BAL 26 IND 21

Panthers @ Chiefs Line: KC -10.0

The Panthers get a big piece of their offense back with Christian McCaffrey. Can that be enough to beat the Chiefs? Probably not. Can they at least cover? Maybe? I’m not betting on the maybe. Chiefs can put up points and I don’t think the Panthers can keep up.

PICK: KC -10.0 KC 32 CAR 21

Giants @ Washington Line: WSH -2.5

I don’t like the Giants. I don’t like Washington…but I’d rather put my money on them to win by at least a field goal.

PICK: WSH -2.5 WSH 17 NYG 13

Texans @ Jaguars Line: HOU -7.0

I don’t like betting on backup QBs and I won’t be here.

PICK: HOU -7.0 HOU 27 JAX 13

Raiders @ Chargers Line: LV -1.0

I’m really liking the Raiders this year, at least against the spread. Chargers keep finding ways to lose and I think Gruden can hand them another here, even if it’s close.

PICK: LV -1.0 LV 24 LAC 21

Steelers @ Cowboys Line: PIT -14.5

Ah that’s a lot of points. And Steelers keep winning games close, but the Steelers and their (arguably) best defense in the league take on a QB in his first start, I’ll take the risk and the points here.

PICK: PIT -14.5 PIT 31 DAL 16

Dolphins @ Cardinals Line: ARI -6.0

The Dolphins won the game last week but seem to have lost the box score. I expect the Cardinals and their dynamic offense to be able to win and cover.

PICK: ARI -6.0 ARI 24 MIA 14

Saints @ Buccaneers Line: TB -3.5

The Bucs lost the first matchup in week one and have only gotten better. Will AB be a distraction? Very likely, but not yet. Tampa picks up a big divisional win here.

PICK: TB -3.5 TB 34 NO 27

Patriots @ Jets Line: NE -9.5

I don’t like betting on the Jets, and won’t here. I don’t like the way New England has been playing, but I still hope they can beat a terrible Jets team by 10 points. Cam is still playing with his career on the line. Time to wake up.

PICK: NE -9.5 NE 20 NYJ 10

Overall Record: 10-16

NFL Week 8: Pick ‘Em Pickle

I wanted to do better last week. I’m prepared to correct that this week in Week 8. Last week, some surprises (and maybe a poor pick or two) led to a 5-8 record against the spread in Week 7. The Falcons proved to be the bigger disappointment compared to the Lions, Bengals clawed away against the Browns again, and the Bills decided to let the Jets hang around for most of the game. Onwards and upwards! In Week 8, we’ll see some solid Divisional matchups, Tua Time, and the battle for the AFC North. Let’s pick ‘em!

Colts @ Lions Line: IND -3

The Lions were one of my disappointing picks last week. I felt Falcons were better than their record and with a healthy Julio Jones could light up a struggling Lions defense, but that didn’t happen. Detroit now has a very favorable schedule the next couple of weeks and I think their success continues against the Colts. These are two evenly matched teams, actually. I really like the Colts defense, but I can’t bet on Philip Rivers. I just don’t trust them. Lions win an ugly game filled with mistakes.

Pick: Lions 24 Colts 21

Vikings @ Packers Line: GB -6

Last week was a big bounce back week for the Pack and Aaron Rodgers. The Vikings have been having a rough season and playing the Packers shouldn’t help that. Pack roll winning by at least two scores.

Pick: Packers 34 Vikings 14

Patriots @ Bills Line: BUFF -4.5

Buffalo was a major let down last week against the spread playing the Jets. I thought the Jets were going to end up winning for most of the game. However, you can’t mention struggle without bringing up the Pats. Cam Newton is now playing for his job…and possibly career. Won’t help that all his help is beat up on both sides of the ball. This isn’t their week. Bills win and cover.

Pick: Bills 20 Patriots 10

Titans @ Bengals Line: TEN -7

The Bengals were my shock of the week last week. For a second time they hung on against the Browns. Does this say more about them or the Browns? We’ll find out soon, but there has to be a lot of optimism in Cincinnati right now regardless of the record. With that being said, the Titans are coming off a narrow loss to the undefeated Steelers and will want to prove they’re still a Super Bowl contender. I don’t see the Bengals luck repeating against the Titans.

Pick: Titans 28 Bengals 10

Raiders @ Browns Line: CLE -1

I think this could be one of the more interesting games of the week. Who are these teams? Both are largely inconsistent. As are their quarterbacks. Baker had a stellar second half last week…but it was against the Bengals. How much do we factor that in? Meanwhile, Carr is a QB who is elite one week and getting run out of town the next. The Browns find themselves in a competitive division and need every win they can get. This is a winnable game for them, but they’re missing OBJ for the season. This could be used as motivation for the team, but I look for patterns. I don’t trust the Browns pattern. They lose a disappointing game against the Raiders here.

Pick: Raiders 24 Browns 21

Jets @ Chiefs Line: KC -20

The Jets burned me last week. 20 points is a big spread. But I’m still riding it. Best team in the league against the worst. Bet the best.

Pick: Chiefs 35 Jets 14

Rams @ Dolphins Line: LAR -4.5

Tua Time is getting the headlines. I think the Fins learn quickly that they might have rushed this thing. Debuting against Aaron Donald? Ouch.

Pick: Rams 21 Dolphins 10

Steelers @ Ravens Line: BAL -4

Hoping for a great game here. This is a right division and every game matters. I have to go with the Steelers here, though. It’s a big game and historically that doesn’t work well for Lamar. Steelers remain undefeated going into week 9.

Pick: Steelers 24 Ravens 17

Chargers @ Broncos Line: LAC -3.5

Chargers look great with Justin Herbert behind center. My pick for rookie of the year stays hot against Denver.

Pick: Chargers 17 Broncos 10

Saints @ Bears Line: NO -4

The Bears started hot but are now slipping. And will continue to fall the next couple of weeks. Can’t see them beating the Saints, even if the Saints don’t have a healthy squad.

Pick: Saints 24 Bears 13

49ers @ Seahawks Line: SEA -3.0

Last week was a head scratcher for the Seahawks. Wilson threw three picks and they lost to the Cardinals in OT. I expect them to bounce back here and return to their normal selves.

Pick: Seahawks 31 49ers 21

Cowboys @ Eagles Line: PHL -10.5

I believed in the Cowboys last week. Even through all of the disasters leading up to Week 8. I still believed. However, my faith is gone. They are as bad as they say they are. It’s all just bad. Oh, the Eagles are, too. But not quite *that* bad.

Pick: Eagles 27 Cowboys 13

Buccaneers @ Giants Line: TB -12.5

Tom Brady and The Bucs are looking like Super Bowl contenders, as many expected. But what’s really been impressive is the Tampa Bay defense. I expect them to demolish a Giants team prone to turnovers. Plus, we all know Tom would love to run up the score against the Giants. People don’t forget.

Pick: Buccaneers 35 Giants 13

Lines based on ESPN ScoreCenter App at 9:40am Sunday morning.