With nothing to play for, Matthew Stafford shouldn’t risk further injury
By Robert Jones
The Lions need to learn to execute
We already know that Matthew Stafford will sit out today’s contest against the Dallas Cowboys, which is the right decision, but why keep the possibility of him playing open? If the Ford’s are at all mulling over the idea of whether they want to bring back Bob Quinn and Matt Patricia, they should find another criteria beyond wins to make that decision.
What about the defense turning themselves around and winning a game by shutting down their opposition? How about the Lions actually running over, around and through a good defense to control the clock and demoralize the opponent’s defense.
If there is any doubt in the minds of the Ford family they need to find reasons beyond the Lions getting a lucky win or two to decide. They need to evaluate this team on their level of play. If these Lions are unable to become the team Matt Patricia told us he was building, a good, tough defensive team and a club that can run the ball, then that is where the thought process should begin.
Now the Lions have added talent to this roster, but the problem that needs to be solved is their inability to avoid mistakes and execute their assignments. If these Lions could play clean mostly mistake-free football, their record would look a lot better. They would also be in the thick of the playoff race.
Instead, the inability to make a play when they need it the most, especially on defense, has been their albatross.
So my advice to the Lions and especially the Ford family would be simple; don’t risk Matthew Stafford’s health on meaningless games and shelf him with the idea of getting him ready for next season. And if they are trying to decide whether they want to keep Quinn and Patricia, make that decision based on how well these Lions can execute and avoid mistakes the rest of the season.
Despite the fact that Martha Firestone Ford has been much more willing to make a change than her late husband ever did, if I had to hazard a guess, I would say that I believe that Quinn and Patricia will be back. But if they are, they will be on the hot seat. There will be no moral victories and no excuses for losing.
Getting Matthew healthy for next year is absolutely a must, but if these Lions can’t learn how to start executing their assignments and making plays and carry that over to next year, then even a healthy Stafford will have trouble carrying this team.