While waiting for football to begin, Detroit Lions fans have time to debate the NFL Top 100 ranking of Matthew 0Stafford. Is No. 31 too low or just right?
Here at Kick in the Crotch Weekly (what I’ve dubbed my Detroit Lions fandom and long-suffering), it’s a slow time of year for Lions news. Which gives us plenty of time to debate or discuss fairly useless topics to keep ourselves preoccupied.
It puts him ninth among quarterbacks according to those NFL players who participated. Is that a fair ranking? We’ll discuss it this week.
The Top 100 list
Both of the last two years have seen Stafford (No. 31) put behind a list of eight other signal-callers.
This year’s ranking is slightly different, but we will discuss the list to see if there’s consistency among voters (NFL players). Here are the quarterbacks ranked ahead of Stafford, in order, with their rank:
Gil Brandt, NFL.com writer, Sirius XM NFL personality, and former Dallas Cowboys front office member, had this to say about the players named up to Stafford, which included seven other Top 100 players at quarterback:
"“Matthew Stafford will be playing his 10th season at age 30 — the time in a quarterback’s career where he really starts to know what he’s doing, operating with a great feel for the game,” Brandt wrote for NFL.com. “Stafford is smart with a very strong arm and outstanding athletic ability … He’s the guy I’d want.”"
As Brandt articulated, Stafford’s yardage was third, touchdowns were fourth, and his completion percentage was sixth. Of the players on the list that are ranked above Stafford, four threw more interceptions. Neither Rodgers nor Wentz played full seasons, and both still had 6 and 7 interceptions, respectively.
Not only those numbers, which somehow did not earn a Pro Bowl, but Stafford had horrible pass protection and no running game to help him, unlike many of the players who garnered higher rankings.
The Lions started 11 different line combinations last year along the offensive line. That line gave up 47 sacks, 7th worst in the NFL. However, the offense still put up the 7th most points of any team. Of the offenses who featured one of the higher ranked field generals, only three averaged more points: Patriots (Brady), Eagles (Wentz), and Saints (Brees).