Interestingly, Killer also claims that the Lions cut their full process short to bring in Schwartz partly because of Schwartz's ties to Scott Pioli (the newly-hired general manager of the Kansas City Chiefs). Killer disputes the PFT report that Pioli and Schwartz despise each other, saying that the Lions 'knew better', and wanted to get Schwartz signed before Pioli could lure him away. If this is true, it speaks volumes about the way this hire has been handled; in my opinion, the Lions played their cards perfectly from the get-go. Keeping totally silent about their preferences, interviewing many different candidates--regardless of what they thought of previous candidates--even waiting patiently to interview Ron Rivera, two days after Schwartz likely gave the interview that sealed the job. They had a very well-thought-out process and stuck to it--until they thought they might lose out, at which point they jumped and got their man.
If Killer's characterization of all this is accurate, then I would have to say that Lewand and Mayhew get A+ marks from me. I think the Grandmaster is an excellent coach, a brilliant hire, and this fills me with optimism for the next couple of years. What will be absolutely cruicial, however, is the staff Schwartz hires from here on out. Marinelli's greatest downfall was his inability to hire a competent staff . . . will the Grandmaster's opening establish a more robust pawn structure?
. . . I apologize. You're going to have to deal with some chess jokes.