I have been a fan of the Detroit Lions since 1989. That is about a lifetime and to be fair they have brought a lot of sadness and misery into my life. If pain makes one strong then Detroit Lions fans are among the strongest fans in the universe. However, when I think about my favorite sports moments a lot of good Lions memories are there. I am from Detroit, my kid was born in Detroit and I rep my city and its teams. That means I bleed silver and Honolulu blue. While I think that they are on the right track now that has not always been the case. Even though I wanted to do a top 25 list to be very honest the Matt “The Idiot” Millen years make that near impossible. With that in mind here are my twenty favorite Detroit Lions players from my 28 years of Lion fandom.
With that being said:
#20 Kicker Jason Hanson
It says a lot about a team and how they have failed to build a championship contender when a kicker makes a list of all time favorite players. I can remember whole seasons where the only bright spot on the entire roster was Mr. Hanson.
First and foremost he played his entire career in Detroit and those kinda guys are very rare. Better than that this guy virtually owns the Detroit Lions kicking record book. Most points scored for a career by a wide margin. Most points in a season, for which he also holds the number two and three spots. Most extra points for a career and in any one season by a very wide margin. Most field goals in a career and in any one season. Highest percentage of field goals made for a season. The only thing not dominated by Hanson is longest field goals since Matt Prater has come around and beaten Hanson’s 54 yards twice. I wonder what that says about Matthew Stafford and his coming new contract?
It is really too bad that the middle of Hanson’s Lions career was the terrible Millen years. He played for six different head coaches and two interim ones. He was a member of teams that went to six playoffs all losing in the Wild Card round. Such a shame that such a talent wasted his career like so many others.
There was some controversy when Hanson decided to retire but this list is more about what the players did on the field and how important they were to the team’s success. Hanson was a key part the limited amount of success the Lions were able to achieve during his long career.
Read about the rest of my favorite Detroit Lions players here