Caldwell's limited statistical impact

Stats show new Lions coach may not be offensive answer for Stafford and Co.

Updated: January 15, 2014, 12:34 AM ET
By Mike Ridley | Football Outsiders

Flacco-Caldwell AP Photo/Patrick SemanskyJoe Flacco and the Ravens' offense struggled this year under Jim Caldwell.

On Tuesday, the Detroit Lions announced Jim Caldwell as their 26th head coach -- and the fourth since 2003. Caldwell's offensive background and head-coaching experience were intriguing to a Lions team that was searching for someone to help a talented but inconsistent Matthew Stafford. But when we consider that Caldwell earned a lot of his credentials working with the legendary Peyton Manning, the question has to be asked: Is Caldwell as good as the numbers indicate?

From 2002-2008, Caldwell was quarterbacks coach (and eventual assistant head coach) for the Colts, helping Manning win three MVP awards. Then he took over in 2009 and led the Colts to a Super Bowl. But was Caldwell's success in Indianapolis circumstantial?


To see the rest of Football Outsiders' article on why Jim Caldwell's previous offensive success may have been circumstantial, and why he may not be the answer for Matthew Stafford and the Lions, become an ESPN Insider.