By Ashley Dunkak
ALLEN PARK (CBS DETROIT) – Trash talk about a football team is nothing new. Trash talk about the dire straits of a long-struggling city that just declared bankruptcy? That’s a verbal volley coming hard and fast at Detroit fans and sports teams, most recently the Detroit Lions.
And ironically, the attacks are coming as the team sits at No. 1 in the NFC North — a position that’s not exactly familiar for the franchise.
The latest came from Chicago Bears wide receiver Brandon Marshall, who made an appearance on “The Jay Cutler Show” on WMVP-AM 1000 after the Lions beat the Bears on Sunday for a series sweep this season.
“It’s the little brother (complex),” Marshall said, according to the Chicago Tribune. “The big brother wants to go out and play with his friends and the little brother is annoying. ‘Hey, can I go?’
“No you can’t go Detroit Lions,” he joked. “Sit back. Sit in your little city. Know what I mean? Fix your financial problems and all of that. You can’t come with us right now.”
While the football trash talk seemed unnecessary on its own, given the Lions’ sweep of the Bears in 2013, calling out the city itself rubbed many the wrong way. Chicago, after all, was declared the murder capital of the United States in September when the FBI released its annual crime statistics. And Chicago has its own debt crisis.
Lions safety Glover Quin voiced his displeasure about the attack on Detroit through Twitter.
Martin is hardly the first athlete to go after Detroit. In January 2012, a Lions player – no longer with the team – took a shot at the city. Defensive back Aaron Berry, apparently in response to massive amounts of Twitter criticism of his play in a loss, tweeted, “Y’all can go back to being Broke & Miserable…back to regular scheduled programming…”
Minnesota Vikings defensive end Jared Allen disparaged Detroit in comments he made in December 2011, though he mainly targeted the weather. He did up the ante, though, by saying he would kill himself if he had to live in Detroit.
“I don’t like going to Detroit, I’ll be honest,” Allen said. “It’s gloomy. It sucks. Everything’s brown. There’s snow on the ground. There’s like brownstones everywhere and I’m like, ‘Awesome.’ I don’t know, I couldn’t do it. If I had to live in Detroit, I think I’d just drown myself in the river that was across the way.
“And I’m not trying to be mean,” Allen added, “but it’s just depressing when I go there.”
Fans have joined the fray as well. When the Detroit Tigers played the Cleveland Indians in August, Cleveland supporters chanted, “De-troit’s Bank-rupt!” during a game.