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Published:September 30th, 2009 13:30 EST
Hail to the Detroit Lions!:For at least one week

Hail to the Detroit Lions!:For at least one week

By Geoff Dean

 A few days prior to the current NFL season, I was discussing prospects for the upcoming year. As a Colts fan, I was looking forward with some trepidation, but anticipation, as well. My friend, from dear old Detroit, was decidedly less optimistic.

Detroit Lions

 He pointed to the decision to start a rookie quarterback, Matthew Stafford, instead of giving him time to develop, as the latest in a long line of boneheaded moves. He bemoaned the lack of much in the way of defense. He worried about the running game, which he doubted would be able to take much pressure off Stafford. He was concerned about special teams, kick returns, field goals, basically, everything except the cheerleaders. And yet, he was, and is, and I reckon, always will be a Lions fan, world without end, Amen.

 I give a lot of credit to him and to the 40,000 or so who showed up to cheer on their Lions. Sure, it was the smallest crowd in the history of Ford Field (as if you can blame those who did not show up) but those who did, deserve praise as the truest of the true fans.

 I commiserate. As a long time Colts and Pacers fan, I have experienced some low moments myself. I attended a game, when the 0-12 Colts played the similarly disfigured 0-12 Chargers a few decades back. If I remember correctly, and Lord knows I`ve tried to forget, the Chargers won 3-0 in the worst game, and I have seem some clunkers, I have ever seen. The Colts` coach was fired the next day (fortunately, his name escapes me). The Colts finished the season with three meaningless wins, meaning they couldn`t even get the first draft pick for all their troubles.

 Late in that lemon of a game, with Jeff George, the quarterback who never bothered to have a last name, completing pass after pass to wide open stretches of turf with no players in sight, as the boos rained down, I noticed something. As bad as they were, as rotten as they played, as much as they turned my stomach, I wasn`t about to leave early. I was a Colts` fan. Forever. Win, lose, or draw. Case closed.

 That`s what a fan is, isn`t it? It took a long time to turn it around but the Colts did. The Lions will, too. Some days or decades down the road, these bad memories will be just that. Memories. Until then, hail to the Lions, the talk of Week 3. And for those downtrodden, discouraged Redskins` fans....