If the Detroit Lions fail to win under Bob Quinn and Matt Patricia, will the organization also move on from quarterback Matthew Stafford?
Detroit Lions‘ starting quarterback, Matthew Stafford, is only 31-years old. In actual life, that’s still young. Even in the NFL, that age isn’t deemed to be out of a quarterback’s prime. But then you remember Stafford is actually entering his 11th season in the league.
Since being selected by the Lions number one overall in the 2009 NFL Draft, Stafford has had just four winning seasons in Detroit and three playoff appearances. And with the hiring of Darrell Bevell this offseason, the veteran passer is learning under his fourth offensive coordinator.
Despite the lack of team success in the Motor City, and having only been nominated to the Pro Bowl once (2014), Stafford signed a massive a five-year extension two years ago worth $135 million. It made him the highest paid player in NFL history at the time. And it was certainly the going rate for quarterbacks as we would see others quickly overshadow it.
Still, there seems to be a sense that the window is closing on Stafford somewhat. And that second-year head coach Matt Patricia, along with general manager Bob Quinn, could represent Stafford’s final chance to prove he can win in Detroit.
Here’s what Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio had to say about Stafford and the Lions after naming Detroit one of the 12 worst teams in the NFL recently.
"“The only question at this point is whether the team will step up before the current power structure decides to tell Stafford to step off. The answer depends on whether the Lions can incorporate sufficient Patriot DNA to spark change before ownership decides to press the restart button prior to the effort to embrace a shot at greatness taking root.”"
The Lions set a clear window for both Quinn and Patricia to win in Motown, as both are reportedly signed through 2022. Their futures appeared to be tied together. And if Detroit doesn’t start winning soon, both could suffer the same fate. According to Florio, Stafford could be someone the Lions’ brass decides to move on from as well.
Entering his 11th season in the NFL, quarterback Matthew Stafford is certainly on the downslope of his career despite his relatively young age. And for all his wonderful qualities he’s shown both on-and-off the field, the end results have clearly been lacking. For fans of Stafford, they have to believe the combination of Bob Quinn and Matt Patricia unlocks the veteran passer’s potential. If not, then the franchise could opt to start their rebuild under center first.