Sports Outside the Beltway

Lions “Move On” from QB Joey Harrington

The Detroit Lions have officially decided that their drafting of Joey Harrington 3rd overall in 2002 was a bust.

The Detroit Lions are parting ways with Joey Harrington after four turbulent seasons in which the former third overall draft pick went from franchise savior to fans’ scourge. Although he declined to say whether Harrington had been released, coach Rod Marinelli told reporters Monday: “We’ve made a decision to move on.” “At this moment, he’s not with us,” Marinelli said. “That’s been my decision.”

A message left with David Dunn, Harrington’s agent, was not immediately returned.

Harrington, the third overall pick in the 2002 draft, was 18-37 as a starter with the Lions under three coaches: Marty Mornhinweg, Steve Mariucci and Dick Jauron, who took over when he Mariucci was fired during the 2005 season. He started 55 games, throwing for 10,242 yards with 60 touchdowns and 62 interceptions and a mediocre 68.1 passer rating.

Harrington will be replaced by either Jon Kitna or Josh McCown, both former starters signed who agreed to terms in the last week.

Frankly, I’m not sure Peyton Manning would have fared all that much better. The Lions front office has been a joke and they have shifted coaches and offensive schemes several times in Harrington’s short tenure.

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