It’s over, in just about every way. The Lions’ playoff hopes ended in typically agonizing fashion, and after one more meaningless game, Jim Schwartz’s tenure should end too. This isn’t debatable anymore. In one interminable, tortuous exercise, the Lions left it all out there — the interceptions, the penalties, the fumbles, the poor decisions. Matthew Stafford is a wreck right now, and of all the reasons to fire Schwartz, that’s where you start. It ended on another long field goal, a 45-yarder by Josh Brown to give the Giants a 23-20 overtime victory Sunday, but it seemed to end about a half-dozen times. These Lions aren’t good enough, strong enough or smart enough, and they’re staggering to the finish again. With five losses in six games, they’re 7-8 and out of the race, and Schwartz is out of answers. As Brown’s field goal sailed through the uprights, Schwartz calmly took off his headset, dropped it to the turf and walked slowly toward midfield. It was a different look than he’d portrayed a few minutes earlier, when he yelled in the direction of the Ford Field crowd, which was booing lustily as the Lions ran out the clock and settled for overtime. Schwartz admitted to being frustrated by the boos, and said he was trying to get his own team fired up. But he looked like an angry man recognizing a dire situation. He said he wouldn’t think about his job status now, with a game remaining at Minnesota, and his players dutifully supported him. But it’s hard to conjure a circumstance in which he returns for a sixth season. “Speculation is not my business,” Schwartz said. “My business is coaching the team and trying to keep it focused. That’s job enough without worrying about all the other stuff.” The job ultimately is too big for Schwartz here, and while he helped turn things around, he couldn’t sand off the rough edges and finish it. That Schwartz mantra about being aggressive and not being scared? The Lions spent the past six weeks playing as if occasionally petrified, or putrified.
Lions' ugly loss to Giants should end Jim Schwartz era
Detroit News | Dec 23