NFC North – Tampa Bay Buccaneers More Recent Champions Than Detroit Lions

Barry Sanders

One franchise that’s always easy to find something bad to say about happens to be the Detroit Lions. Decades of failure and limited success at best. Division championships aren’t exactly something to remember for years, but even in that category a team that hasn’t been in the division for a very long time has a more recent division title there, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The Lions haven’t won a division title in the NFC North, which was called the NFC Central back then, since 1993.¬†Wayne Fontes was the head coach at the time, Barry Sanders the star at running back. Sanders actually had his “weakest” season in 1993: Only 1115 yards, missing five games because of an injury. He still averaged more than 100 yards per game, but he scored only three touchdowns that season.

They made the playoffs that season during the good years for the team, but like all through the 90’s, they messed up in the Wild Card round, losing to the Green Bay Packers 28-24.

The Bucs are an NFC South team, but before the big reorganization of 2002, they were part of the NFC Central. Coached by Tony Dungy, the Bucs made the NFC Championship game that season with six Pro Bowlers and five All-Pro selections. They had an 11-5 record that season, losing to the Rams in an UGLY conference championship game. Since then they’ve won a Super Bowl and three divisional titles. The Lions? They haven’t won a single playoff game, and have 20 consecutive seasons without finishing first in the division.

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