Today was an interesting day, if I can say anything I can say that Detroit Lions fans are a passionate crowd about their team and their “guys”. I started a little bit of an argument today over at the mlive forums when I introduced the idea that Calvin Johnson and Matthew Stafford have a very good chance of becoming more iconic in Detroit Lions football lore than the great, great, GREAT(3 times for emphasis) Barry Sanders.
Wow, you would have thought I called somebodies mom fat or something! (well I probably did but that’s beside the point, lol!)
Most Lions fans were having NO PARTS OF IT, it was hilarious! But is the premise that far-fetched? I think not.
By nature almost, Barry Sanders is BY FAR my favorite Detroit Lion of all time and he’s known as arguably the greatest Lion the ever played the game of Football. Barry Sanders is the reason I was able to stay loyal to the Lions throughout the Millen decade of despair, Detroit Lions football was absolutely epic to witness when #20 hit the field. Every time Barry Sanders touched the ball I would stop breathing for a split second because he made me forget to breathe, I was too busy waiting for the amazing to happen and it usually did. I’ve never seen anyone like him.
So when I pose the question of whether his greatness can be eclipsed it seems almost like a Lions fan cardinal sin, but it’s not. The reason that I believe Megatron and Stafford have an opportunity to pass Barry in greatness is because they are just that good. Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson are once-in-a-generation types of talent, it’s that simple.
Barring injury, Calvin Johnson will go down as the greatest wide receiver to have ever played the game, the man is literally playing on another level than the competition. What other wide receiver have you ever seen that gets bracketed at the goal line to the point that it looks like the gunner positions in punt coverage? You haven’t seen it, only with CJ because he’s that special of a player.
On the mlive forums I heard everything from the idiotic “Barry makes more phenomenal plays in one season than these two will in their careers combined” to the true “Barry Sanders is still seen as one of the best at his position EVER”.
People get too emotional when considering Barry Sanders and the pleasure he brought the entire NFL on Sundays, this is about the here and now and the same statement made about Barry’s rank amongst his position all-time will be said about Calvin Johnson. The difference? Megatron will be hailed as the greatest at his position ever, not only top 5.
Now Matt Stafford obviously has more to prove, he needs to still stay healthy in which is as likely as any other quarterback in the NFL, he had fluke injuries that painted him in a bad light amongst crybaby fans that probably wanted the Lions to draft Aaron Curry and are just desperate to be right for once in their lives. The kids is as tough as nails and just a true winner. Throwing to Calvin Johnson AND being supremely talented adds up to a future of AMAZING plays, big game victories and chances at Super Bowl victories.
With spectacular plays being equal, the winning will propel these two current Lions to the head of the class in regards to legendary status in Detroit Lions history as well as the NFL record books.
What do you think, am I right or am I right?
And with all that having been said…. “Bar-ry, Bar-ry, Bar-ry!!!”