#3. Matthew Stafford, QB – Detroit Lions
The Detroit Lions could be moving on from head coach Matt Patricia and general manager Bob Quinn soon after the duo has produced their third disappointing season in a row. Lions’ ownership set the expectations at the end of last year that their team be a playoff contender in 2020.
And so far, Detroit has posted a 4-7 record and once again sits in the basement of the NFC North division. The Lions’ loss to the Houston Texans on Thanksgiving has sparked speculation that Patricia might not last to next week, which would essentially place the Motor City in rebuilding mode once again.
If the Lions’ organization decides quarterback Matthew Stafford is not part of those rebuilding plans, the Cowboys would seem to be the perfect landing spot for the former Highland Park High School star.
Stafford is well-respected not only by the Lions’ organization, its coaching staff, and his teammates but even by his divisional rivals. Just listen to the unprompted praise Green Bay Packers’ quarterback Aaron Rodgers recently heaped on Stafford during a recent appearance on the Pat McAfee Show.
In Dallas, the 32-year old Stafford would undoubtedly have the most talented supporting cast of his entire career. But he’s also a 12-year veteran who missed eight games last year due to a back injury. Stafford’s recent rash of injuries needs to be taken into serious consideration if the Cowboys decide to make a move for the Lions’ star.
Stafford inked a five-year, $135 million contract extension in 2017, which made him the highest-paid player in the NFL history at the time. Although he’s under contract until 2023, the Lions have an out this upcoming offseason that they could use to jettison their longtime passer, making him a highly-coveted free agent.
Prior to his injury last season, Stafford was on an MVP-pace. He recorded 2,499 yards, 19 touchdowns, and five interceptions in eight games. Prior to Thursday’s loss to Houston, Stafford had posted 2,581 yards, 17 touchdowns, and seven picks. He completed 28 of his 42 passes for 295 yards for one touchdown and one interception against the Texans on Thursday.