In case you have not heard (and seen), Detroit Lions head coach Dan Campbell started off his press conference on Thursday by wearing a racing helmet.
Campbell was wearing the helmet to have some fun after he was officially named as the Grand Marshal for the Detroit Grand Prix.
But, not surprisingly, many national media members went flying for the low-hanging fruit and bashed Campbell for being a goofball. Heck, even local radio host Mike Valenti took the bait.
One of those media members was Joy Taylor, who is the co-host of “The Herd” with Colin Cowherd, which airs live on Monday through Friday at 3 p.m. ET on FS1 and Fox Sports Radio.
Check it out.
I want better for you Lions fans. That’s all. pic.twitter.com/6xq1PZ9BDW
— Joy Taylor (@JoyTaylorTalks) June 3, 2021
Well, John Maakaron of SI.com recently scored an exclusive interview with Taylor and she defended her comments about Dan Campbell, saying his actions are “gimmicky and silly.”
So, first of all, I knew he was the Grand Marshal of the Grand Prix. I don’t go on TV and just react to things. So, I said that when I was setting the story up, when Colin (Cowherd) and I discussed it. So, I did know that because a lot of people were like, “Don’t you know why he’s doing that?” Like, yes. I don’t think he’s just randomly walking up to the press conference with a helmet on. I would be seriously concerned if that was the case. So, yes, I did know that.
Here’s my thing with what and how Dan has popped up on the national media stage so far in his time with the Lions. I understand when you’re local, you’re going to see a different side of him day-to-day. I know that because he was with the Dolphins when I was working locally in Miami. So, I’m fully aware of that. For me, being in the national space now, I feel like a team, especially like the Lions, who has a long history of, let’s just be honest, failures and not being competitive and not being able to get past that hump, you really need to come in with a culture-building mentality. And yes, it’s fun to wear helmets at the press conference. And yes, it’s fun to talk about biting kneecaps and just running through a wall and bringing in a real lion — like all that stuff is fun. How it reads to me is, “Okay, so it’s kind of more of the same.” Like we’re doing these over-the-top motivational things. We’re creating this kind of over-the-top, “rah rah” culture. It’s all about motivating. It’s all about creating dogs. And we’re going to be the toughest and the roughest. That, to me, is not how you build a real culture and a long-lasting winning organization. I think it’s fun. I think it plays great on social media. Obviously, fans love it. And especially when you’re transitioning from Matt Patricia to a Dan Campbell. I mean, that is a big personality change. And, to be fair, I didn’t think that Matt Patricia was going to have a lot of success there, either.
I think that the way that you build winning, and I’ve seen this because I grew up in Pittsburgh, so I watched the Steelers be a winning organization for a very long time. You have to be consistent, and you have to create some urgency. And that, to me, is just not the message that he’s sending. So, I think you can be that guy. I think you can have fun. I think you can make jokes. I think you can wear the helmet and do all that goofy stuff after you’ve shown I’m serious. This is a serious organization. Not that you have to be serious 24/7. We know that. But, present yourself in a way that you’re building something. And, to me, it just seems kind of gimmicky and silly.
Before the interview was over, Taylor did offer a brief apology to Lions fans.
“Sorry, Lions fans. Hey, I love you guys,” Taylor said.