Who was the best President/GM in the NFL over the past 7 years. Matt Millen.
Please hear me out on this and kick my butt in the thread comments later, but whom else would we all have wanted to work for if you were a slightly above average talent in the NFL and wanted to get paid like a HOF'er. Matt Millen.
If you were a career assistant coach or a journeyman head coach whom failed where his predecessors did not and an NFL team came knocking at your door with a 3-5 guaranteed contract that put you in the upper half of what NFL coaches at that time where being paid, whom did you want to work for. Matt Millen.
Never mind the 31-84 record which was the worst in the NFL over that span. Play for the Lions and you will get paid well as if you played for Indy, New England, or even Dallas. In the case of Tatum Bell you can even leave with nice parting gifts courtesy of our next bust of a free agent. Sorry that one was easy.
My favorite slogan for the year 2008 has been Hindsight is the best Foresight. I started saying this when the Tigers kept getting close to .500 and than someone would get hurt and we would bring our AAA baseball team up for some quality big league starts and usually end up losing the game in the 7th, 8th or 9th inning.
Why would I bring this up when we are talking about Matt Millen. Conceivably we live in an era now that buying a ball club only will help sell tickets and not buy a championship hence the NY Yankees of the new millenium era, New England Patriots from the past couple of seasons, the Detroit Lions from the history of time, and now the 2008 Tigers whom should have kept developing their farm teams and slowly add pieces instead of what happened this year.
Rumor has it that Matt Millen had lunch with Dave Dombrowski over the MLB offseason and told him to "Go ahead spend, spend, spend the owners money, I do it." Althought this cannot be proven some of Benyo's Basement sports spy's have Fernando Bryant, Dre Bly, Marcus Pollard, Steve Marriucci, and John Kitna agreeing Matt Millen was one great GM to work for.
I would like to take this brief momemet and point out how many of us from Detroit were very proud this past year when the Red Wings won a Championship in this new salary cap era. It brought a lot of critisism to its knees when they used to pay top dollar to lure free agents away from other organizations and it hopes of a strong playoff run only to have the NHL banish us and maybe the NY Rangers as bad example of how succesful hockey organizations are hurting the smaller markets. Very good for us to have a last laugh.
I do hope that one day before I die( I am 37) and before my grandchildren become bitter like I am towards my favorite NFL team, I would love to see some quality football. The type of team that drafts to fill voids. The type of team that will try and make judgement calls when it comes to guaranteed contracts. Finally the type of team that when you wear their shirt or hat people can shout out other names of great players instead of remind me all the time when they see me wearing my teams logos how great it must have been for us to have had a once in a lifetime great player like Barry Sanders. I always say the say thing, " Yes it was but even he got fed up and left."
Okay so back on Matt Millen. Great NFL linebacker. Really nice home in PA. Quality broadcasting career and now a very padded bank account for life. Not bad for a guy whom if he really is passionate about the NFL and the players he overspent for while running an NFL team maybe he will take on the task of replacing Gene Upshaw and become the new head of the players Union. Whom else could be a better candidate.
Because in Detroit during the Matt Millen era only the players are choking on their own tears right now that he is gone. Best wishes Matt and don't let the door hit you on your way out.