By Joe Brown
Love of NFL Correspondent
Detroit Lions fans have suffered for eight agonizing years as Matt Millen single-handedly destroyed a once-prideful organization.
It’s not like they didn’t at least try to grab the attention of owner William Clay Ford, Sr.
For years, fans often organized protests outside of the stadium and blasted local sports radio stations with disgust and rage. It was so maddening that even devout fans found the Millen Era to be such a maddening experience, they became — and vowed to stay — apathetic until Millen was long gone.
The hoopla and coverage leading up to the Super Bowl is usually too much to handle, but I must admit morbid curiosity got the best of me.
Millen was scheduled to be on the air, and I’ve always wondered what the face of barefaced audacity looked like up close. After all, he hardly ever stood in front of a camera or sat down for an interview during his days in town.
With tightening knots in my stomach, the camera eventually landed on Millen. Just like every time before when he spoke in his hokey manner, I had flashbacks to my childhood watching Charlie Brown and the rest of the Peanuts gang; specifically, the classroom scenes with a teacher in the background talking.
Why the connection? Well, there were two traits about those teachers that Millen shares. You’d only hear them and would never see them. When they did talk, it was always, “wah wah wah wah.”
Whenever the camera was on him, the running text along the bottom of televisions across Metro Detroit read:
“Matt Millen was president of the Lions for the worst eight-year run in the history of the NFL. Knowing his history with the team, is there a credibility issue as he now serves as an analyst for NBC Sports? Will Detroit fans ever forgive him for turning the Lions into the worst team in football?”
A big thumbs-up should go to WDIV-Channel 4 in Detroit — a NBC affiliate for having the courage to undermine their parent station.
For all of you who are jamming blogs, forums and message boards across the country calling this a classless move, you better think twice before criticizing WDIV.
The recurring theme with Millen and his employers is crystal clear now. Known to be a wonderful bootlicker, he’s now fooled another poor sap — besides Ford — over at NBC.
So, here we are again, with WDIV taking a bold stance against their parent company, NBC. Hats off to you and your little peacock, fellas!