Have at It: The tenure of Jim Schwartz


Let's try to maintain some semblance of balance as we await Randy Moss' arrival in Minnesota, starting with an issue that surfaced in Tuesday's SportsNation chat and has been bubbling below the NFC North surface for a few weeks. Namely: To what extent should Jim Schwartz be taking heat for a 2-18 record in his first 20 games as the Detroit Lions' head coach?

First, the relative exchange:

Tom (Michigan)

Kevin, Detroit area reporters are saying it's time to point the finger at Schwartz, but they also said it takes 2 years to rebuild this mess. We're only 1.25 yrs. in...what gives?

Kevin Seifert (2:22 PM)

Very complicated issue. As we've said before, coaches are ultimately judged on their record, regardless of circumstances. Schwartz's record is 2-18. It goes without saying how bad that is. That said, I'm not sure I could run off a list of 10 things that he should have done to make it better. There have been some debatable game-management decisions, but ultimately he lost his starting quarterback in the first half of Week 1 and has an abominable group of linebackers and defensive backs. He's the coach, so he should be blamed. But you don't give up on him yet, knowing what you know about his circumstances.

I remain convinced of that latter sentiment after a day to reflect on my answer. I think it's reasonable to believe the record is terrible but that Schwartz's performance has not been. That's just me. What do you think?

So here is our "Have at It" for this week: Are you blaming Schwartz for the record, or does he get excused because Matt Millen's tenure left him starting from a deep hole? Are there things this coaching staff could have done in the interim to win more games than it has? And moving forward, how confident are you that he is the right man for the job?

As always, I'll publish a representative of your responses, as well as my own take, by the end of the week. Have at It.