Establishing a new culture!

I usually do not put much stock into when coaches speak about changing the culture or even when a single player talks about how the new HC is changing the culture. It’s usually coach speak, media spin, BS.

We’ve heard it many times before.

Case in point when MP arrived we heard all about how he was going to change the culture. Then when he signed a bunch of Ex Patriots we heard several of them say how they were all taking MP’s lead to change the culture and how the culture was changing … blah blah blah. Well MP changed the culture all right. He created locker room turmoil and disfunction.

When I hear this talk my BS meter immediately goes on red alert… I want to see the culture change not hear about it.

So when I hear talk about Dan Campbell changing the culture I roll my eyes and I think…. Yeah right I’ve heard that before. I just don’t believe that BS. Show me!

But I have to admit I’m starting to buy into that hype.

I still think Dan has a lot of learning to do as a HC. He even admitted that. He’s fessed up to making a lot of mistakes. He had plenty of head scratching decisions last year but…. from a culture change standpoint I believe the hype. Mind you the Lions locker room culture was at an all time low when he arrived. So it had no where to go but up…. That made me cautious when I heard how the locker room culture was changing. It just had to improve right?

But when Deshon Elliot made it clear that he came here for the culture. Listening to him speak you can tell he liked what he was hearing about Dan Campbell.

Then you have Anthony Lynn’s interview. A guy who had every reason to trash talk Dan but instead he had nothing but praise about him, his leadership and how he was changing the culture.

DJ Chark joined us on a one year prove it deal and makes it clear he had other options but it’s the culture in Detroit that drew him here.

Tracy Walker who lived through the MP era could have cut ties with the Lions or drove up the price but he chose to return to Detroit and not play the FA game because he wanted to be here.

Craig Reynolds, Jason Cabinda, former GM’s and former players are all talking about Dan Campbell and how he leads.

As a lion fan I’ve heard free agents talk about wanting to be here but that’s usually after we paid them big money. This feels different to me.

I can admit the last time players were praising a Lions HC and his leadership, it was Caldwell and Caldwell made a ton of poor game management decisions that cost us game. Dan has too. So there’s reason to be cautious here. I still feel we gave up on Caldwell too soon and a competent GM could have probably guided Caldwell.

Dan however feels different. He is a like able, genuine coach and I think players and fans relate to him. Which some fans take the hype to an unhealthy level because they like Dan.

Having a staff filled with former players I believe helps set the culture because players are more willing to buy in. So I like Dans business plan for success.

Dan is a character… and at times I would like to see more professionalism. But he’s like able and hard not to root for. I get the fan love, I am believing the culture change is real. Pour me a glass of that koolaid!

But …… I caution everyone. He’s still a young coach making a lot of mistakes. However I think he has the biggest hurdle figured out and that’s the locker room culture.

If he wants to maintain that momentum he’s going to need to build on the good will he earned in year one. Players are behind him but that may change if they lose a bunch of games. I’m looking forward to the season to see how the coaching staff and players respond.

So in 2022 I want to see Dan cut back on the coaching mistakes. I want to see us win more games than we loose and I want to see them build on the culture and leadership talk.

All of that is obtainable.


Loved all of this.
Love that he is already as amazing as he is, that he is SO hungry to grow (not just win), and it is incredibly encouraging that he’s getting better.
Love how he is not only willing, but hungry, to grow and take a look at himself, his decisions, his staff, his style, etc.

This dude is going to murder it.





I’m intrigued by the cast of characters, but it’s gotta result in playoff wins or it’s a failure.

No early judgements from me, neither last year nor today. I will say that one of my own criteria for how good a HC is is if the sum plays greater than the parts. Clearly they did last year.


Well said Air! I don’t believe I have ever seen a post so well put anywhere before. What you have described explains the pain from the decades past, while speaking faith being built from nothing a Lions fans has seen in a long time!

In order to change culture, one’s heart has to feel/see something different. And it’s something we have not seen in many decades.

Well said Air!


I think that this was going to be a serious and genuine culture change was obvious by training camp last year. I did not and do not consider it hype in any way. The change seemed obvious to me.

It was a refreshing difference

Clearly many would have to be slow to climb aboard.
Being a Lions fan is much more severe than “once bitten twice shy.”

And last year the sum was much > the parts.

MCDC was clear that he’d be reviewing everything HE did as well on game day. I have full confidence that we will see him improve each year for the next few years. He’s very smart and has no need to feed his ego.

In his eyes, and I think as a fundamental requirement of each coach, the most important thing is to help each player maximize their potential.

Each coach and each player is to sharpen the saw on an ongoing basis. A continuous improvement culture if you will.

No turds. They only want guys who will commit their all to becoming all they can be.

This is the perfect set up for what I used to call in business a “virtuous circle.” A business (team) is either in a upward trending virtuous circle or in a downward spiral. There is no such thing as holding ground.

I believe the moment they see a player begin his personal downward spiral, he will be traded or cut. You watch, there will surprise player trades / cuts moving forward.

We used to pick up guys like Reggie Bush who had no value by year two. We will now trade guys before they have no value because they will see he’s no longer improving — they can only go down from there.

I love it!!

This will be a new golden age for the Lions.
Enjoy the ride.


I agree and very well presented btw

Many here cite 3-13-1…”you are what your record says you are”

Typically I’d agree, but not so much in this case, many good things happened, building blocks were laid, 3-13-1 lands you Hutch, you got the closest thing to Randy Moss in Jameson I’ve seen…well since. Your QB is primed to go off and I have full confidence he will

Over and over I find myself repeating, just avoid the injury bug and this very well may be the beginning of a nice run


It’s offseason, brother. :wink:
Gonna have to have a little patience.

p.s. I hate it too.

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Great post. I am with you on the whole “culture” thing. I think culture is very real, but like so many things today, it’s now just become marketing jargon and fabricated BS. Everyone wants to “change the culture” but very few can even identify their culture, what needs to change or what those changes should be.

I will say this, after the Bears Thanksgiving game, I was very down on Campbell. He screwed that game up badly, and in my opinion, lost that game on his own. I think Campbell started the year fairly conservative with in game coaching. Then as the year got going he realized his team was bad, and the only way to win was to start getting risky and taking chances. Campbell then crossed well past the “risk” line and ventured into “stupid” territory. At this point, we’ve seen MANY coaches try to justify bad decisions with bravado, challenging people who challenge their thoughts and basically double down on their stupidity. Here’s where Campbell did something that changed my mind.

Campbell came out and has owned his bad decision making. Not only did he own it, he showed he can learn from it. He didn’t go ultra conservative. He learned to start picking his places to take risks. Instead of always going for it on 4th down, or never going for it on 4th down, he started mixing in when to take those risks. Whether it was fake punts, onside kicks, or trick plays, Campbell is now forcing teams to defend every inch of grass, and on every down. Teams studying our tape are going to be analyzing down and distance and thinking “Ok, the Lions have to punt here. Right? Well, is this one of those times Campbell goes for it?” Campbell is keeping teams on edge. That right there, means our head coach is a difference maker, and that’s a LOT more than what we are used to seeing from our HC’s.

I will tell you, I am always called negative. I call myself a realist. I see through BS. I am much more of a “show me” person. I can have faith, but you have to prove yourself worthy of it first. I admit, I like and was intrigued by the idea of a fully ex-player coaching staff. I loved that they would take guys and coach them up, and be able to teach from real NFL experience. Our coaches are guys who did it at a high level, with long term experience of what it takes to not only make the league, but to stay year in and year out. Here is the moment that Dan Campbell really won me over.

Whenever a team is in a bad year, coaches are usually trying to build hype for next year. Wait till next year, we will turn it around, etc. The Lions had just upset the Arizona Cardinals, and everyone was basking in the glow of a shocking upset as well as praising Craig Reynolds for his breakout game. I remember Campbell in the papers saying that Craig Reynolds is a perfect example of why players should WANT to come to Detroit. He said that if you are a player who just wants a chance to play to show what they can do, who wants an opportunity, you should be here.

Man, that really resonated with me. I was thinking, in a bad year where he could be talking up next year, making excuses like injuries or patting himself on the back for a big game, he was recruiting for players for THIS YEAR. Campbell was calling every guy in the league who feels they aren’t getting an opportunity and telling them, this is where you need to come if you want to prove it. That’s great stuff. I got a lot of the reasons why players want to play for Campbell, but that was the moment for me that made ME want to play for him.


Dan Campbell is what I’ve wanted for our team for decades. I’ve said it before, that from a standpoint of in game decisions and/or strategy, he may need help.

What I see…
The best leader in the NFL.

Players, fans, co-workers, coaching staff, employees, pundits, etc can see the Strength and honor, the love and passion, the commitment, determination, relentlessness, and not only the highest “give a shit” factor, but the highest “give a shit” factor for the RIGHT reasons (think opposite of Patricia).

His genuine care for his people, to represent himself with honor, loyalty, strength and love …for HIMSELF…his staff…the organization…and most importantly the players. It’s his fucking identity.

The video of him getting his first tour of the facility and he looks at Sheila and says, “I’m gonna make you real proud.” I’m like OMFG I love you, bro. It’s not just who he is…it’s who and how he is HERE. He is as loving of the organization as Spielman is. 2 guys that would have every right to despise the organization and talk shit the way most others do.

Speilman hired himself.

This thing is perfection.
Dan is the strong, immovable force that is the only thing that could ever turn this thing around. Spielman hired himself. Brad is the “smart guy with guts.” Dan is the “gutty guy with smarts.” They’re different animals, and IMO, Dan’s more important…but holy fuck do I ever love them both.

What they are building here is going to terrorize the NFCN for a couple of decades. So thankful these guys are young.


I am just saying that until we win playoff games and hang banners there has not been a change

Hope we do


I remember when Campbell and Holmes were hired, I made a comment about Spielman coming back to Detroit as a sign that things were different. Spielman has always bled all things Detroit Lions. It’s in his DNA. His 30 for 30 still brings me to tears because you realize how BADLY that guy wanted to win here. As much as he always bled Lions, Spielman said he had been approached by the team before to work in a front office job. He always turned it down.

When Sheila took over as owner, I was not (and still am not) convinced this would work. It’s another Ford. That being said, when Spielman then agreed to come be an executive for the Lions, I thought “He sees something different here.” Spielman’s sudden change of heart got me thinking that maybe he did see things he didn’t like with WCF and Martha, but he sees something different with Sheila in charge. I said before, Spielman had a super cushy gig with Fox, could watch as much football as he wanted and not have to be truly invested in it. For Spielman to then turn that down so he could work in the front office, to go back to a team where he used to get physically sick after losses, that spoke volumes to me. Spielman would not come back as some sort of good PR move. He would only come in if he was convinced that something had changed, and he could help. If Spielman sees all of that, then you bet your ass I am on board.


Dan Campbell primarily and Brad Holmes have flipped the culture as fast as Jimmy Johnson did in Dallas. JJ won 2 of the next 5 Super Bowls. I predicted the Lions would win 3 of the next 6 Super Bowls right after Dan made kneecapping popular in ways that Tanya couldn’t. We’ll see.

Holmbell will signal that the culture is fully set and needs no further accelerant, if our 2023 7th round draft pick gets cut or traded before the 2022 season starts. That’s the litmus test and I’m sticking to it.


Yep, it’s all bullshit until they win games.


I didn’t see the 30/30 thing you mentioned, nor did I know he had been offered FO gigs. Thanks for the intel.

Dan’s got this. I’m already celebrating the growth and division titles that are coming.

SCREW GB…here comes the hammer (Dan Campbell)

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Had to read this twice.

The 2023 draft hasn’t happened yet so there is a 0% chance this will happen. I assume you meant 2022 7th round pick.

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I think he meant 2023 7th before 2023 starts
I get it but they could just have made a bad pick as well
The point is that the roster is elevated enough that picks don’t make it (I think)

Exactly! The players all loved Rod Marinelli and Caldwell and neither could get us a playoff win. I’m hesitantly optimistic, but still expecting the worst. 1 playoff win in 60 years will do that to a man.

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Disagree here - change has occurred and is happening as we speak: wins are the fruit of that change…. What can effect the fruit of winning? Injuries and simply poor play in one or two plays in a game.

But change has happened…. We need to hear the fruit now

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