With the NFL regular season quickly approaching, the Detroit Lions have finally established their 53-man roster. As other teams begin to churn the bottom of their rosters, we may see a few changes, but for now we have a pretty good idea of which players will represent the Honolulu Blue shade on Sundays.
On that note, I will take a closer look at each positional group, and hand out grades for each position and explaining why I gave out that grade.
First up, Quarterback.
Aug 22, 2014; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) during the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Ford Field. Detroit won 13-12. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports
Starter: Matthew Stafford
Reserves: Dan Orlovsky, Kellen Moore
Practice Squad: None
Let me start by saying this. I have the utmost confidence in Matthew Stafford’s ability paired with our new coaching staff. If I were to give out a separate grade just for our starting quarterback, I’d probably label him as a high B-plus or A-minus. But of course I’m grading entire positions, and behind Matthew Stafford, there isn’t much to be desired.
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You often hear the term, “you’re only as good as your backup quarterback.” Well if that’s the case, then we aren’t very good. If Stafford falls to a significant injury, you can all but kiss this season goodbye. The Lions would be lucky to pull out two wins with Orlovsky or Moore under center.
Luckily for Lions fans, Stafford’s fragile frame is a thing of the past. He’s bulked up since his prior injuries, and has been a reliable weapon (knock on wood) for the Lions as of late.
We’ve seen both sides to Matthew Stafford throughout the preseason and training camp. Most often we’ve seen the new and improved Stafford who threw just one interception during team exercises in practice. However, against the Jaguars a few weeks ago, we saw the Stafford who struggled late last year dealing with footwork issues leading to inaccurate throws.
Let’s hope the coaching staff is able to fix Stafford’s problems by the time the regular season rolls around.