The Detroit Lions are an American NFL team, and North Division members of the National Football Conference (NFC). They play their home games in downtown Detroit at the Ford Field. The Lions weren’t always from Detroit, though. They were originally called the Portsmouth Spartans, out of Portsmouth, OH.
Just as the Lions weren’t always a Detroit team, Detroit was once home to other teams. In the 1920’s, the Heralds made Detroit their home, and in 1925, it was the Panthers, and they lasted in Detroit for even a less time than the Heralds. In 1928, the Detroit Wolverines were made, but folded after just one year. Obviously football teams in Detroit didn’t always have a good start.
Finally, in 1934, the Lions were purchased from Detroit for nearly $8,000, and have remained there ever since.
Here is some interesting trivia about the Detroit Lions:
- Their team colors are white, black, silver, and Honolulu Blue, and their logo is a blue lion.
- They made fourteen Playoff appearances, and won four NFL Championships: 1935, 1952, 1953, and 1957.
- Their very first NFL Championship win was in 1935—their second year of officially being the Detroit Lions.
- Many times in 1934-1937 and in 1940, the Lions played at the stadium at the University of Detroit. Crowds of 16,000 + people would come to watch.
- The Detroit Lions wore 1950’s style jerseys on Thanksgiving Day from 2001-2004. They wanted to help the NFL encourage other teams to wear traditional jerseys on Thanksgiving.
The following players have made it into the Pro Football Hall of Fame: Pro Football Hall of Fame: Lem Barney, Lou Creekmur, Jack Christiansen, Dutch Clark, Frank Gatski, John Henry Johnson, Bill Dudley, Dick “Night Train” Lane, Bobby Layne, Yale Lary, Barry Sanders, Charlie Sanders, Doak Walker, Joe Schmidt, and Alex Wojciechowicz. The Detroit Lions obviously have a long, extensive history of good players.
In order to honor these players, as well as other legendary Detroit Lions players, they have a program called “Lions Legends” that honors all of their great, former players, the ones who made “…special moments” over the years and “added to the lore of Motor City football…” Some of these other legendary “Motor City” football players include Charley Ane, Cloyce Box, Dexter Bussey, Mel Gray, Kevin Glover, Jim Gibbons, and more. Only time will tell which of the current Lions players will be honored as “Lions Legends” in years to come.