Oh, the Detroit Lions: You’re the Bad News Bears of the NFL, minus the throwing of second-place trophies and Walter Matthau.
With an all-time wins percentage under .500 and exactly zero Super Bowl appearances, the Lions are a team that some would call “down on their luck.” Sure, there’s been a highlight or two in the last few decades: Megatron (the Calvin Johnson one, not the guy who disses Star Scream) played his whole career in the Motor City, captivating fans with insane speed and the ability to make Matt Stafford look pretty okay.
Then there’s the legend of Barry Sanders, the greatest running back (seriously, the greatest) that ever lived donned the silver and Honolulu blue uniform for his entire run (heh) in the NFL. And hey! Alex Karras was a Lion before he became Mongo in Blazing Saddles. Pretty neat, right?
Still, the Detroit Lions don’t have a ton going for themselves in terms of wins and records. What they do have, though, as reddit user zutjo pointed out recently, is that they do hold the longest streak for consecutive seasons with a recorded safety, with 12. For those of you who don’t know what the hell a safety is, first: how the hell did you get this far in this article? Secondly, go here.
What makes this so impressive, you hopefully asked? Well, the second closest streak to this, according to pro-football-reference.com, is the New York Jets, with seven. This may not seem like much until realize the other important factor in this: the Lions’ record is still active. Beginning in the 2004 season, the Lions have recorded at least one safety per season until this last season, mean the Lions have a chance to further their lead. The other closest active streak? The Buffalo Bills with two. Two. Not one or three or other numbers; two.
Will the streak continue? No one can be sure. We are talking about the Lions, after all, a team that has been down and out longer than most people have been alive. They still have a long way to go in proving they can contend with likes of other teams. Still, they’ve got that streak going for them, which is nice.
Photo (front): Detroit Free Press
Photo (top): Tom Dahlin