Our conversation with John U. Bacon, Michigan Radio's sports commentator.
It was a good news/bad news situation for the Detroit Lions on New Year's Day. The good news was before their regular season finale at Ford Field against the Packers, the New York Giants did Detroit a favor by beating the Washington Redskins. With the Giants win, that clinched a playoff spot for the Lions.
The bad news is that the Lions let a halftime lead slip away and they lost to the Packers, 31-24. That defeat cost Detroit their first division title (and first home playoff game) since 1993. Their consolation prize? The No. 6 seed in the NFC playoffs and a Saturday night matchup in Seattle against the Seahawks, who haven't lost a home playoff game since 2004.
The season is on the line for the Detroit Lions as they take on the Green Bay Packers Sunday night.
The Lions have only defeated one team with a winning record this season. But they could still sew up the NFC North division title by defeating the Packers. That would give the Lions a home playoff game.
It didn’t need to come down to this game. The Packers are riding a five game winning streak after struggling for the first half of the season. Meanwhile, the Lions have lost their last two games, setting up Sunday’s decisive matchup.
Last week, more than 4,000 people crammed into Chicago’s redundantly named Auditorium Theater to watch NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announce the names of 256 players. Two-hundred-thousand more watched the action on big TVs in Grant Park.
Taxpayers are the ones who are really paying for the St. Louis Rams' big shift from Missouri to Los Angeles
This week, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announced that the Rams would be allowed to move from St. Louis back to Los Angeles. I realize you might not care, but you should, because we’re the ones paying for it – again.
When Michael Sam told his University of Missouri teammates he was gay before last season, it wasn’t a big deal. It’s a safe bet that NFL teams – who know what kind of gum their prospects chew – already knew this, too. But when Sam came out publicly, it changed the equation.
The NFL has already had gay players, so that’s not new. But publicly declaring you’re gay is new – and so is the onslaught of media attention.
The Detroit Tigers had just clinched a division title after a long season, and the Detroit Lions had simply won a game, but the two different ways the head coaches of Detroit's major sports teams celebrate a win does show something about their personalities.
Here's the "Jim Leyland moonwalk" making the rounds online (You can scroll to 1:25 to see the moonwalk, but his heartfelt 'thank you' to his players, staff, and fans is worth watching. - you can follow this link if the video doesn't load below):
And here's the "Jim Schwartz headset throw" going around the net (the Lions had just beaten the Washington Redskins - follow this link if the video doesn't load below):
Students in Michigan's public schools are back at their desks.
And for young football players, soccer players and other athletes around the state, practice has been happening in earnest for weeks. This will be the first school sports season under Michigan's new sports concussion law. We wanted to find out what it will mean to student athletes, their coaches and their parents. Laura Rowen joined us today. She's an injury prevention consultant with the Michigan Department of Community Health. Listen to the audio above.
Super Bowl XLVII provided us with thrills, spills and record electric bills – plus a football game somewhere in there.
You not only survived that annual orgy of conspicuous consumption called the Super Bowl, you also survived the two weeks of endless stories without news that lead up to the big day.
And when the big game arrives, what is our reward? On the one day we actually look forward to watching TV ads, they were so bland and boring and just plain bad, we had no choice but to turn our attention to the actual football game.
A former National Football League player from Michigan filed a lawsuit yesterday against the league and four others for failing to warn him of football-related head injuries, reports the Associated Press.
Derrick Walker lives in West Bloomfield, and he began his football career playing for the University of Michigan Wolverines where he served as co-captain in the '80s. Since then, the plaintiff went on to play tight end professionally for the San Diego Chargers, the Kansas City Chiefs and the Oakland Raiders.
Over that time period, Walker's lawsuit says he was concussed multiple times which led to memory loss, difficulty concentrating, headaches and difficulty sleeping. Now he's seeking at least $500,000 in damages, reports the Detroit Free Press.
For three quarters, the Detroit Lions performed like playoff veterans.
They led Drew Brees and the mighty New Orleans Saints at halftime. They were still right in the game heading to the fourth quarter.
But Brees and the Saints blew it open in the final period, turning Detroit's postseason return into a one-and-done affair with a 45-28 NFC playoff victory that was much closer most of the night on a raucous Saturday at the Superdome.
The current contract between NFL owners and the players association expires at midnight. Without a deal, Ford Field in Detroit will sit empty during the Lions scheduled pre-season and regular season home games this fall.
A study commissioned by the players association says $20 million is spent on average in NFL cities during regular season home games. In some cities, much more is spent. The Christian Science Monitor reports small businesses may pay a big price.
The Lions are reporting that due to "overwhelming" response, free tickets to tonight's NFL game at Ford Field are no longer being offered.
Update: 12/13/10, 9:30 a.m.:
Fans in downtown Detroit are lining up at Ford Field to get free tickets for tonight's NFL game between the Minnesota Vikings and New York Giants. Detroit Lions President Tom Lewand said on WJR this morning that there going to work to make sure everyone can be accommodated, "but I think we're going to be a little oversubscribed."
The New York Times has put together an interactive before and after photo showing how the roof of the Metrodome deflated after heavy snowfall. The Giants and Vikings were scheduled to play there today.
The NFL moved the game to Ford Field and will be played tomorrow night (Monday) at 7:20pm. The Detroit Free Press reports it'll be the "first ever regular-season Monday Night game at Ford Field."