Detroit Lions most important asset: Matthew Stafford or Matt Patricia?

CINCINNATI, OH - DECEMBER 24: Matthew Stafford
CINCINNATI, OH - DECEMBER 24: Matthew Stafford /
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Lions braintrust
(Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /

Now 10 years later the Lions have a new owner in Martha Firestone Ford, who hired Bob Quinn two years ago as her general manager and assigned him the task of turning this franchise around.

To that end, he hired former Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia as his new head coach.

Patricia was the whiz kid who became a literal rocket scientist, but couldn’t shake his love of football.

To that end, he walked away from a comfortable job in aeronautical engineering to pursue his passion. A gamble that paid off many years later as he worked his way up from college to the NFL, eventually becoming the defensive coordinator of a modern-day dynasty that participated in three Super Bowls during his run as their DC, winning two of them.

Now he is the head coach of the Detroit Lions who are seeking their first championship in 60 years.

As we look towards the 2018 campaign which is pretty much just around the corner, there are many keys that will need to go the Lions way to find themselves back the playoffs and possibly landing the first postseason win since 1991 for this franchise.

Yet the real question that begs to be answered is; who is the most important piece of the puzzle for the team’s success in 2018, Matthew Stafford or Matt Patricia?

The easy answer is that if Stafford goes down to injury the season is over. However, that can be said about any team that has a franchise quarterback. Whether it’s New England, Green Bay or Pittsburgh.

So, while that is definitely a valid point that cannot be ignored, it’s a reality all around the NFL, not just Detroit.

No, in searching for the answer to this question, we need to dig just a little deeper.

Starting with what each means to the franchise. Stafford under center gives the Lions veteran leadership who has shown the ability to be very productive despite having no ground game or pass protection. His ability to lead the Lions to come from behind victories on a fairly regular basis has become expected, but his record against good teams or in the playoffs is completely forgettable.