Thank goodness the Lions have a smart GM that knows the true value of talented players that consistently contribute to winning.
I get so sick of slash and burn type fans that are quick to dismiss players who are clearly valuable to this football team.
You should see how (some) fans talk about Nate Burleson, as if he isn’t the highly productive emotional leader of the wide receiving corps.
Just because Corey Williams’ name isn’t all in the press and headlines doesn’t mean that he isn’t an absolute stalwart on this defensive line and another team leader.
With the Detroit Lions having the tight cap situation that they have, many have all but written Bobby Ross bus tickets out-of-town for these two integral team players.
Even though the Detroit Lions thankfully have young players that are pushing for playing time and have shown flashes of elite talent in Titus Young and Nick Fairley, the value of Nate and Corey should not be diminished and Martin Mayhew is aware of that.
How quickly we as fans forget the absolute bumbs and pieces-o-crap that we had playing supporting receiving roles on this team in the recent past.
How prolific were Bryant Johnson, Derrick Williams and even Roy “first dooooooown by 2 TDs” Williams?
The Lions finally have a stacked deck and full set of really good receivers in Calvin Johnson, Nate Burleson and Titus Young. Burleson had 73 receptions last year, 757 yards and averaged 10.4 yds per catch, 3TDs along with 85 rushing yards at 7.7 yards per pop. So what are people complaining about?
Is he supposed to be Megatron with Megatron already on the team? Who is going to come in a do what he does? I’d love to hear it.
As far a Corey Williams goes, it doesn’t always show up in the stat sheets, but Corey is consistently grading out as the best defensive lineman on the football field when Jim Schwartz and the rest of the coaches sit down and watch the game film.
Losing these two players would be a bigger loss than many fans may think. But because Burleson will earn $4 million and Corey Williams will make $5 million in 2012 people are ready to show them the door prematurely.
“Those guys are leaders in our locker room and a very important part of our football team,” Lions general manager Martin Mayhew said at the 2012 NFL Scouting Combine when asked about Williams and Burleson.
“I have reached out to both their agents and told them that at this time we have no plans to do anything with their contracts and we’re happy with their performance and happy with what they bring to our team and our locker room.”
“Both of them have been very professional the whole time they’ve been here and they have been a good example for our younger players.”
Mayhew doesn’t even like the talk of these players getting cut, “When you speculate on releasing guys,” says Mayhew, “people don’t understand you’re talking about real people – people that have parents, people that have kids, people that have wives and how it affects a guy, personally.”
“In this business, I could sit down and talk to a player, and he could leave my office and read on the Internet that he’s getting cut. Then he’s wondering if what I told him was true or not, just because of the nature of the business. So I think you really shouldn’t speculate on that kind of stuff. If you have information, then go with it. But if you don’t have information on that, I just think that’s way out of bounds.”
The Detroit Lions are going to have some critical decisions to make in regards to the team’s roster and the salaries that will remain on the team’s docket, the budget is tight and our big names have played their way to potentially big contracts. But let’s not be so quick to forget what these players contribute to this team on Sunday, let’s keep things in perspective.
Thankfully we have a general manager who is doing that even if we as fans find it impossible, Martin Mayhew knows that this team is a better team with Corey Williams and Nate Burleson on the roster even if fans are quick to forget it.