Lions owner hesitates when asked about Jim Schwartz's future
Lions general manager Martin Mayhew likely came out of team vice chairman Bill Ford's Tuesday media encounter feeling pretty good about his future in Detroit. On the other hand, Jim Schwartz might best have a good 2013 if he's going to see 2014 as the Lions head coach.
Speaking to reporters for the first time in a year, Ford said he liked the Lions' depth and direction under Mayhew's hand. Ford acknowledged that Schwartz has had several missteps while turning in three losing seasons in four years with the Lions.
But Ford admitted that coach Jim Schwartz has had some bumps in the road on his way to three losing seasons in four years. The Lions have finished and 2-14, 6-10, 10-6 and 4-12 the last four seasons under Schwartz. While he called Schwartz a very good coach, he declined to comment when asked specifically about Schwartz's future.
“I think Jim would be the first to admit that there have been times where he’s learned on the job,” Ford said after he watched the Lions’ organized team activity today in Allen Park. “But I think he’s a very, very good coach.”
Ford sidestepped a question about whether it was crucial for Schwartz had to have a good season this year.
“I’m not going to address that at this point,” Ford said.
Ford also declined to discuss Mayhew’s contract status, but praised his GM and the Lions' front-office staff several times.
“I think Martin has done a terrific job of building a very professional front office, and I do like the direction,” he said. “I think the addition of (senior personnel executive) Brian Xanders has been an important one for us, and I like the new coaches we have as well.”