Good or Bad? Lions Cheerleaders

Good or Bad? Lions Cheerleaders

The NFL is facing a controversy they’d much rather handle then head injuries, domestic abuse and DeflateGate…  cheerleaders. The Detroit Lions cheerleaders issue isn’t getting the headlines of those other topics, but it is clearly a subject discussed heavily recently. The issue is should Team President Rod Wood have brought cheerleaders to the franchise. Kyle Mallett offers his thoughts.

It’s finally happening. After years of talk and speculation, the Detroit Lions will have official cheerleaders on the sidelines, at promotional events and on calendars. This is the first time the franchise has employed cheerleaders and it’s courtesy of new team president Rod Wood.

Detroit was among a small group of NFL teams without cheerleaders patrolling the sidelines. When Wood was hired in November he has repeatedly asked the question about cheerleaders and he would respond by saying he was looking into it the matter.

“The Ford Family is unwavering in their commitment to improving the Detroit Lions fan experience on and off the field,” Wood said in the statement making the announcement. “After thorough consideration and receiving input from our fans through season ticket member surveys and focus groups, we believe that this is an opportunity to elevate our game day entertainment.”

It’s just one man’s opinion, but I have no problem with the Lions employing cheerleaders. Almost every other NFL team has them on their sidelines on Sundays and I see no harm. Tickets to a game are not cheap and for that reason, I’m all for improving the fan experience.

cheer montage

Others might throw in an argument like, “Won’t it just elevate a bunch of horny guys’ game day experience?” It’s a fair question, and men can definitely be disgusting pigs sometimes, but most men at a football game are there to cheer the home team to victory and not leer at women. Just like women. They are there to cheer the team and not leer at the players. Right? So while others may argue that the cheerleaders are just a cheap sports thrill, guys like myself will say to hell with that, it’s just part of a traditional game-day experience.

Others argue that throwing women out on the sidelines dressed in scantily clad outfits is demeaning and belongs with the previous century. That’s complete bullshit. Women in scantily clad outfits will be a part of our culture for centuries. Because it’s their choice. Walk down the street on a spring or summer day and the evidence is there. The NFL is about football. It’s not a strip club. The cheerleaders will perform dance routines, not lap dances. Let’s not overreact.

The last argument that I’ve heard a few fans make is that the Lions’ front office is putting cheerleaders on the sidelines to create a distraction. General manager Bob Quinn was just hired to re-build the team and it could take two-to-three years.  I don’t at all believe that to be the case. If the Lions wanted to create a distraction, they could’ve resorted to more controversial ideas, like getting a real-life lion as a mascot and pissing off PETA. They could have installed unisex bathrooms. They could have upped the alcohol content on the beer they sell. No. I don’t see the new Lions management team trying to purposely create a distraction. I’m not that cynical.

I believe this is about entertaining the fans with a harmless football tradition. It’s about employing women who love to perform and dance and just have good, clean fun. And, this has nothing to do with setting women back. I’m all for womens’ rights and believe they deserve all of the same opportunities men have. If that’s the agenda of critics of cheerleaders, they should target their activism elsewhere.

The more important topic, for Lions football fans, is that this this organization needs to build a winner. Period. If the integration of cheerleaders does not get prioritized over giving the Detroit faithful what they deserve – a winning football team –  fans should not have a problem with this. My biggest concern now is when will the Lions cheerleaders have something to cheer!

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Tags assigned to this article:
Bob QuinnCheerleadersFord FieldLionsRod Wood

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