Which NFL Team Should Acquire the Lions Star QB?
By: Benedetto Vitale (Twitter: @VitaleTalks)
The Detroit Lions made a buzz this past weekend in the NFL rumor mill. First, their new head coach showed off how much of a “football guy” he is by talking about biting off knee caps. Then, the news of the Lions shopping Matthew Stafford broke.
Stafford is one of the better quarterbacks in the league. This season, he threw for 4,084 yards and 26 touchdowns. In addition to that, he was rather accurate, as he ended with a 64.2 completion percentage. It was an impressive season even without his top wide receiver Kenny Golladay.
Trading Stafford was in the Lions’ game plan all along. According to Adam Schefter, Detroit decided to shop the 12-year vet before they even hired Dan Campbell, and new general manager, Brad Holmes.
Considering Stafford can still play at a high level for at least another three years, Detroit will be hoping for some high-value draft picks in a trade. Jordan Dajani, a writer for CBS Sports, claims, “the Lions are expected to receive at least a first-round pick in return for Stafford.”
With that said, there will be multiple teams to show interest in Matthew Stafford. However, there are three that stick out that could use his talents the most. Here are my top three teams that need Matthew Stafford.
A New Sheriff for the Colts?
After ending the season 11-5, the Indianapolis Colts wound up being one of the best teams in the NFL this year. With Philip Rivers leading the way, the Colts were able to make it to the playoffs, only to be bounced out during Wild Card weekend.
Despite that, Indianapolis is primed for another playoff run next season. The only problem is the QB position. Rivers announced his retirement and Jacoby Brissett will test the waters in the free-agent market. That leaves Jacob Eason as the current QB for the Colts, which means the front office will likely be searching for a new QB. In Kevin Hickey’s article for USA Today, the writer states, “They could also look to trade for Matthew Stafford or Carson Wentz – the former would be the much better choice.”
Indianapolis could take a rookie QB this year, but with the state this franchise is in, drafting a rookie could set this franchise back next year. Instead, the front office should be on the phone with the Lions as soon as possible, as Stafford could open up this offense.
This is Stafford’s best fit, as he’d have one of the best offensive lines in the league protecting him. With weapons like Jonathan Taylor, TY Hilton, Michael Pittman, and whoever else this team acquires this offseason, the Colts would immediately become the favorite to win the AFC South with Stafford under center.
Matthew Stafford Rides into Denver?
The Denver Broncos struggled this year after ending the season with a 5-11 record. The fan base was expecting much more. However, with such a young core on the offense, the Broncos didn’t stand a chance this year regardless.
When looking at the Broncos roster, this team is much better than they showed. If they had better QB play, one could argue the Broncos would’ve made the playoffs as a Wild Card team. Drew Lock has shown flashes, however, he hasn’t put it together at a consistent rate. According to Conor Orr, a writer for Sports Illustrated, Lock was one of the worst starting QBs this year, stating, “Drew Lock finished in the Mitch Trubisky, Gardner Minshew, Andy Dalton tier of ESPN’s total QBR ranking this year.”
Denver has an important decision to make regarding their QB situation. They could ride with Lock and see if he figures it out next season, or, trade for Matthew Stafford. Between the two, Lock is a young prospect who still needs time to develop, while Stafford is a proven veteran QB that would make this team competitive right away.
I don’t know about you, but the idea of Stafford throwing to Jerry Jeudy, Courtland Sutton, and Noah Fant excites me. With Stafford under center, the Broncos could compete with Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs in the AFC West.
A New Veteran QB for the Saints?
The final team on this list is another franchise with a stacked roster. The New Orleans Saints couldn’t win a Super Bowl in Drew Brees’ last year. However, trading for Matthew Stafford is exactly what this franchise needs to continue their winning ways.
Pairing Stafford with Sean Payton sounds like a dream come true for Saints fans. Just imagine Stafford throwing it downfield to Michael Thomas. Alvin Kamara’s usage would boom in all of the right ways as well. However, there is one thing holding this franchise back from possibly conducting a trade for Stafford, and that’s New Orleans’ limited cap space.
Per Jason La Canfora, the Saints are in one of the worst cap situations in the NFL. In his article written for CBS Sports, Canfora states, “The Saints currently stand $68 million over a cap of $198 million, which, if not for a pandemic, would have been a reasonable projection for the 2021 cap.”
This is the least likely scenario, however, it could still come to fruition if this front office can create a little wiggle room. Stafford would be an immediate upgrade over Taysom Hill, and keep the Saints competitive. Don’t be shocked in the Saints’ are thrown around in the rumor mill this offseason.