Lions WR Titus Young is still his own worst enemy.
Titus Young has all of the potential in the world to be great. He also has the rare privilege to have the opportunity to maximize his greatness.
This is why the receiver that is gifted with track speed and natural football instincts continues to baffle those that support and observe him.
After a slew of mistakes that he swore were behind him, on Sunday Young once again found himself on the wrong side of his bad temper.
After getting into an egotistical tango with Rams cornerback Janoris Jenkins, Young was benched at the start of the third quarter by Lions coach Jim Schwartz.
The move was a statement from a coach that most certainly has had enough of not only Young’s antics but those of a few other members of his roster.
As all eyes are focused on how this group will respond to catcalls about their discipline issues a simple head-butt from a receiver to a cornerback goes a long way to state that the Lions have yet to grow up.
Jenkins and his cohort/mentor Cortland Finnegan are both instigators in the vein of former Bulls great Dennis Rodman.
Rodman at times mentally abused his opponents so much that he momentarily took shook their faith in their own game (i.e. Karl Malone).
Finnegan especially lifted the most obnoxious slices of that behavior and has added that to his arsenal to give him an advantage over some of the best receivers in the league.
Where this becomes a problem for Young is that he can’t afford to get into a fight with Finnegan such as Texans wideout Andre Johnson did.
For one, Johnson is entrenched as the face of his franchise and for two he’s a solid citizen that has done nothing to make waves over a lengthy career in the NFL.
When he delivered that infamous three-piece to Finnegan’s noggin, the opinion was that Finnegan had it coming.
Titus is young, brash and already viewed as potential asset that behaves like a liability.
Should it matter how those on the outside view the Lions and in particular Young?
Yes and no.
As long as Titus continues to blow his top, teams will certainly try to assist him in accessing the worst part of himself to frustrate him or even worse get him to do something stupid.
In a best case scenario, this will allow them to get back to only having to worry about Calvin Johnson which is no easy feat within itself.
What Young brings to the table is yet another deep threat for Matt Stafford to target and thrive with.
This renders Young as a threat but it also opens up the availability for Johnson once Young is taken seriously.
That is intimidating to any defensive opponent.
This is why Schwartz’s comments that appeared in the Detroit News rang with disappointment.
“We knew what was going to happen in some situations,” Schwartz said, referring to the expected behavior of the Rams’ cornerbacks “He and a couple of guys were going back and forth, and the whole thing was right in front of me. It looked like he was going to do the right thing and walk away, but at the last second he turned and made a really dumb decision.”
“He didn’t do a smart thing,” Schwartz said of Young’s decision to head-butt Jenkins.
The penalty may have only been 15 yards on an ensuing kickoff but it raised a flag for all to know that Titus Young’s buttons are still very pushable.