Cowboys should stay out of Matthew Stafford sweepstakes

Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions, (Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images)
Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions, (Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images) /

The Dallas Cowboys are heading into this offseason with one all-consuming question looming over them, what should they do with their starting quarterback Dak Prescott? Prescott suffered a gruesome season-ending ankle injury early in the season against the New York Giants. The team will have to decide whether they want to bring back the 27-year old signal-caller, and for how long, this offseason.

If Dallas decides to move on from their starting quarterback (they absolutely should not) they will have to figure out their situation under center moving forward. The team could turn to the draft, bring back their veteran backup Andy Dalton, or sign someone else in free agency (Jameis Winston, Ryan Fitzpatrick, etc.).

What the organization should avoid doing in this situation is a possibility that just emerged yesterday. It was recently announced that the Detroit Lions are actively seeking to trade their starting quarterback Matthew Stafford. Some Cowboys fans will inevitably start calling for America’s Team to consider making a trade for the native Texan.

The 32-year old signal-caller is coming off a year where he threw for 4084 passing yards with 26 passing touchdowns and only ten interceptions. The Lions went 5-11 last season and finished 2020 in last place in the NFC North.

The veteran passer has two years left on his current contract and will be owed slightly more than $40 million over the next two seasons. Notwithstanding that fairly reasonable contract, it appears that Detroit is expecting a first-round draft pick in exchange for their franchise quarterback.

Dallas would be foolish to even consider giving up its first-round draft pick, the tenth overall pick, in the upcoming NFL Draft. It would also be unwise to give up a future first-round draft pick as well given the plethora of needs the team has, especially on the defensive side of the ball.

Regardless of what America’s Team decides to do with Prescott (please re-sign him), they should not get involved in the upcoming Stafford sweepstakes. Despite the relatively reasonable nature of the remainder of his contract and his talent as a passer, Stafford has struggled to consistently win games and is heading into his 13th year in the league next season.

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The aging veteran would not be worth a first-round draft pick, especially for a team with as many pressing needs as Dallas. And Stafford would likely not even be enough of an upgrade over the teams’ backup quarterback Andy Dalton, who will also be a free agent this offseason, to justify giving up such a significant haul. Unfortunately, until the Dallas Cowboys (hopefully) officially brings back Dak Prescott, fans and analysts alike will likely continue to push for ill-considered moves this offseason.