On Saturday, it was reported by NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero that the Detroit Lions and Matthew Stafford have mutually agreed to part ways and he will be traded this offseason. After 12 seasons with the Lions, Stafford will be playing in a new uniform, and that’s where the New England Patriots should come in.
Stafford has been part of a lot of bad teams in Detroit and none of it has really been his fault. The coaching and players that surround him have resulted in him coming up short or not even reaching the playoffs. His one goal when it comes to finding his next team is clear — finding playoff success.
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In his NFL career, he has played in three playoff games. That is not enough considering his incredible talent and a clear route to being an all-timer statistically.
Matthew Stafford wants out of Detroit, opening the door for Bill Belichick and the Patriots
Bill Belichick should be jumping at the opportunity to get Stafford on his roster considering the $51 million in cap room and Stafford’s ability to be the best quarterback on the market.
While Deshaun Watson dominates the headlines, it will take a whole lot to get him from the Houston Texans and may not be something the Patriots could plausibly afford. That makes Stafford the next best option for Belichick to return to greatness and the playoffs.
Stafford is currently 16th all-time in passing yards at the age of 32. That shows his ability to air it out and that is something the Patriots desperately missed this season with Cam Newton at the helm. It’s unlikely the Patriots can get Justin Fields or Zach Wilson in this year’s NFL draft unless they trade up, making Stafford the best option for the future.
Now, you do need to take into account that Stafford’s former head coach Matt Patricia is on his way back to the Patriots, but Stafford should see having a real coach in Belichick is worth dealing with his former one.
If fans are wondering what Stafford can do still, it’s easy. He can ball. In the 2020 season where he was missing top target Kenny Golladay for the majority, he threw for 4,084 yards and 26 touchdowns as he also dealt with injury towards the end of the season.
Stafford can be the quick answer that Belichick is looking for after Tom Brady’s departure that left the Patriots at a stunning 7-9 this season. Stafford wouldn’t be a replacement, but his own entity that could become a star that the Patriots need this season and for future years.
Belichick has long been one to take chances on veterans who want to win. He tried to find magic with Newton and that just wasn’t the right fit.
Stafford, on the other hand, has a history of making his receivers play better than expected and that is something to fit right into the Patriots atmosphere and roster. The cap room is there and the need is even more there. This is a perfect setup for the Patriots and Stafford to come together and make some noise.