By Vickie Thomas
Watching the Detroit Lions big comeback win in Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings 26-23 — after being down 20-0 in the first half – made me think about the parallels between the city and its long struggling football team.
Both the city and the Detroit Lions have been blasted in the local and national media for decades. Neither the Lions, nor the city have been “winning” in a very long time. They’ve both been the butt of jokes from late night comedians and others who want to get on the “let’s kick ‘em when they’re down” band wagon.
Now, the Lions are off to the team’s best start of 3-0 in 31 years. Now, can Detroit Mayor Dave Bing do what coach Jim Schwartz apparently is doing and turn around a ship that appeared to be sinking?
I asked some metro Detroiters if they think the Lions or the city of Detroit have the best chance of making a major comeback. Ava Jackson of Farmington Hills called the nail bitter of a win by the Lions ”awesome,” but said in terms of a big comeback, “Always the city…the head takes the body.”
Stephen Westbrook of Southfield said it was an exciting game. ”I was excited to see them come back and show some character.” He picks the Lions over Detroit for a major comeback.
Detroiter Anthony Ragan gives the advantage to the city. “We are a great city and you just have to have the right attitude with God on our side” he said.
“A phenomenal game” is how Dave Wright of West Bloomfield summed up the victory. Laughing out loud when I asked the question, Wright responded, “I suppose the city always has a chance of a comeback. I just think they (city leaders) have a lot more to overcome than a football team.” So, he gives the edge to the Lions. “They’re probably in a better position right now. They’ve got more pieces in place than the city does.”
With the team’s new, winning attitude, I wondered if there were some lessons city leaders in Detroit could learn from the Lions. Ragan said, “perseverance is the key to success. Everyone can learn from that.” He also added teamwork. “If you put the work in, you’ll get some good results,” he said.
Jackson says the lessons to take away are, “There’s always a comeback and fight for what you want.”
What do you think?