As far as their career head-coaching records, Caldwell is 26-22 in the regular season and 2-2 in playoffs. Whisenhunt has a 45-51 regular-season record, but he’s 4-2 in the playoffs.
Perhaps the only significant difference between the two is that Caldwell adopted a loaded Indianapolis Colts team, while Whisenhunt took over an Arizona Cardinals team that had struggled to win consistently.
In reality, though, they both flamed out rather quickly in their last head-coaching jobs, but in Caldwell’s case, Peyton Manning’s injury was a major factor in the Colts going from 10-6 to 2-14 in one season.
Although the Lions’ brass thinks that Caldwell’s main job is to change Detroit’s losing culture, which could be near impossible, there are two other things Caldwell must accomplish to give himself any chance:
— Exorcize the turnover demons residing in Matthew Stafford’s head, which should allow him to get back on the path to greatness.
— And establish an on-the-field discipline that will stop the Lions from being their own worst enemy.
If Caldwell can calm down Stafford and his teammates, the Lions might finally get to the next level.
But we’re stuck in Lions Land, where nothing ever goes as planned and trying to make sense out of what’s happening is a mind-numbing experience.
Really, does the coach matter at all in Detroit, where it always seems to come down to having blind faith in the organization, specifically the Ford family, whose track record is abysmal?
Only time will tell if they finally made the right call with Caldwell.