Since 2011, the man under the lion’s center has not been questioned. It has been Matthew Stafford, and he will be the franchise quarterback in Motown for the foreseeable future.
However, how “married” is the Lions for Stafford?
As Graziano explains,
“The Lions pay Stafford $ 15 million this year and nothing is guaranteed after that. In fact, as of the restructuring that Stafford did in December, $ 7.2 million of the $ 15 million is now an option bonus tied to a 2023 option on his contract, and the Lions have until the day before their first match in the the regular season 2020 to decide whether to exercise it. If they don’t exercise it, $ 7.2 million will be added to his 2020 salary, so he gets $ 15 million in both cases. And the 2023 year ends no matter what, so this is just a manipulation movement with salary capacity.
However, he does not imagine the Lions trade with Stafford.
Graziano said: “They have said they are not, publicly and privately, and I think he will be their quarterback in 2020. But this is simply an exercise in ranking contract flexibility. And the fact that the Lions have three months to pay that bonus, Stafford moves just a little behind others at his level. Although he plays for them throughout the 2020 season, the Lions can come out of their deal next season with a $ 19 million dead money fee and no more guaranteed salary owed. ” .
Let’s go in the “wayback machine” now until when the Lions drafted Stafford in 2009.
In this 2009 ESPN article, then-Detroit manager Martin Mayhew had a plan for his new quarterback.
“Now it’s up to us to develop him and get good players around him,” Mayhew said.
With only three playoffs and no seasons to win for Stafford, it seems as if the plan drawn up by Mayhew was unsuccessful.
The question that now exists is how invested are the Lions in Stafford 11 years later.
Let’s look at what current Lions head Bob Quinn and head coach Matt Patricia recently had to say about the status of Stafford in Detroit.
In an appearance on “The Rich Eisen Show” Patricia responded to the fact that Stafford’s metro Detroit home is for sale.
“I definitely don’t read into the real estate market unless it’s my house,” Patricia said. “… I think the word I used was laughable. From my point of view – Matthew Stafford and I – I just couldn’t be happier, more blessed to be in a situation where he is our quarterback. “
One paragraph written by the Detroit Free Press in February highlighted what Quinn told Stafford when the rumor of trade surfaced earlier this year.
“I called Matthew and said, ‘Listen, I haven’t had a conversation. I’m not trying – we’re not dealing with you. Period,'” Quinn said. “And he was amazing. He was like, ‘Yeah, I don’t want to go anywhere. “
From the outside and looking in, both Stafford and Lions seem to invest 100 percent in each other.
However, we already know that Quinn and Patricia are on a tight end, with a mandate from ownership to turn the Lions into the final game challenger in 2020.
“We expect to be an end-game challenger, and it’s our expectations that we’ve expressed to both Bob and Matt,” team owner Martha Ford said in an open letter to Lions fans late last year.
What happens if the Lions have another vintage season 2020 and do not meet their expectations of ownership?
We can assume that Quinn and Patricia will be gone. But will the subsequent new regime look for a replacement for Stafford?
Time can decide.
It’s safe to say that as long as the Lions have a productive and winning season in 2020, the marriage between Stafford and the Lions will remain strong.
However, if the season leads in a different way, there may be a new man below the center who says that Honolulu Blue is coming in 2021.
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