DETROIT, MI – Thanks to another slow start in Detroit, the Detroit Lions have parted ways with both head coach Matt Patricia and general manager Bob Quinn. Does this also mean the end of the Matthew Stafford era in the Motor City?
Stafford, the top overall pick in the 2009 NFL Draft from Georgia, is one of the league’s most prolific passers in history, as he was the fastest-ever to reach the 40,000-yard mark and is third all-time in passing yards per game.
The 32-year-old Dallas, Texas raised signal-caller signed what was the largest contract in NFL history, a five-year $135 million dollar extension, with $92 million guaranteed, holds almost every Lions passing record in the storied franchise’s history, could possibly be looking for a new home in 2021 with a new front office likely to want their own guy under center to build around.
Teams who might be in need of a QB of Stafford’s service would be New England, Jacksonville, Washington Football Team and possibly the New York Jets and Giants, as all will either be looking to draft a young QB in the draft, or need a veteran such as Stafford to put them back into playoff contention.
Of all of the teams where Stafford could potentially, the Jets might be the most viable and financially realistic, as they have the most salary cap space in the NFL at $83 million, and also have arguably the most talent in the form of WR’s Jamison Crowder, Denzel Mims, the seemingly immortal Frank Gore at RB and a massive LT on the blind side in Mekhi Becton.
While this may or may not happen in Stafford being jettisoned to Gang Green—or any team—but with Patricia and Quinn now out in Detroit, there is no reason for the incoming GM/HC to retain an aging quarterback making $27 million a year, who is also set to hit free agency in 2023, when he will then be 35.
So, if I’m in the position of the new regime, I would move Stafford now, while his value is still high for draft capital and get his deal off of the Lions’ books so that Detroit can build for the future.
While Stafford has done so much for the Lions and the city of Detroit, it may be wise for all parties involved to amicably dissolve their relationship and go in a new direction entirely.