15 Little-Known Facts About the Detroit Lions

The Lions have a long NFL history filled with iconic players, legendary moments, and a passionate (and long-suffering) fanbase.

Here’s a deeper look:

  1. Portsmouth Roots: The Lions were originally called the Portsmouth Spartans and played in Ohio before moving to Detroit in 1934.
  2. Thanksgiving Tradition: The Lions have played on Thanksgiving Day almost every year since 1934, making them a holiday football staple.
  3. Honolulu Blue & Silver: The Lions’ iconic colors pay homage to the University of Detroit Mercy, where the team’s owner once attended.
  4. Doak Walker Award: This coveted college football award, honoring the best running back, is named after former Lions legend Doak Walker.
  5. Barry’s Brilliance: Running back Barry Sanders is considered one of the greatest ever, his electrifying runs and early retirement adding to his legend.
  6. The Silver Rush: The Lions’ feared defensive line in the 1970s earned this nickname, known for pressuring opposing quarterbacks.
  7. Thanksgiving Curse?: The Lions have one of the worst winning percentages on Thanksgiving Day, leading to jokes about a turkey-day curse.
  8. The Cardiac Cats: The Lions are known for close games and thrilling comebacks, earning them this nickname highlighting their ability to cause heart palpitations for fans.
  9. 0-16: The Lions hold the unfortunate distinction of being the only NFL team to go winless in a 16-game season, doing so in 2008.
  10. Thanksgiving Throwback: The Lions occasionally don classic throwback uniforms during their Thanksgiving games, a fan favorite.
  11. The Millen Era: Former Lions player Matt Millen had a disastrous tenure as General Manager, leading to years of poor performance.
  12. Megatron Rises: Calvin Johnson, nicknamed “Megatron,” was a dominant wide receiver and fan favorite during his time with the Lions.
  13. Ndamukong Suh: Although known for his aggressive play, Suh was a dominant force on the Lions defensive line for many years.
  14. Stafford’s Toughness: Quarterback Matthew Stafford played through countless injuries during his time in Detroit, earning respect for his resilience.
  15. Hope for the Future?: With a young, talented roster and passionate fanbase, the Lions hope to break their championship drought and give Detroit a team to roar about.

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