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9 Matthew Stafford QB
Height/Weight: 6-3/234 | Birthdate: 2/7/1988 | Birthplace: Tampa, FL, USA | Team: Detroit | College: Georgia | NFL Experience: 6 | Owned/Started%: 100/98 | Average Draft Position: 22.22
DET

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Matthew Stafford beat up by Panthers


by Jamey Eisenberg | Senior Fantasy Writer
(9/14/2014) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford struggled at Carolina in Week 2 in a 24-7 loss.

Stafford was 27-of-48 passing for 291 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He also added one carry for 8 yards and was sacked four times for 38 yards.

Stafford will look to rebound in Week 3 at home against the Packers.


Matthew Stafford shows better judgment, technique


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(9/10/2014) It's only one game, but early returns were promising for Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford. After making bad decisions and displaying poor fundamentals late last season, Stafford did nearly everything right in Monday's win over the Giants.

"I do think Matthew did a tremendous job of making good decisions," coach Jim Caldwell told the Detroit Free Press. "I think you saw him spread the ball around quite a bit. I thought he did a nice job of not forcing the ball. He did take some check-downs that ended up being pretty sizable plays for us."

Stafford threw for 346 yards and two touchdowns and ran for a score without committing a turnover.


Matthew Stafford shines with three touchdowns in Week 1 win


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(9/8/2014) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford got off to a dream start, scoring three touchdowns Monday night against the Giants in Week 1.

Stafford scrambled and escaped the rush to keep the play alive before firing a 67-yard touchdown to Calvin Johnson, who was left all alone downfield on the opening drive of the game. Stafford found Johnson again, who made a leaping grab for a 16-yard touchdown on the ensuing drive. He showed his wheels in the third quarter, scoring from 5 yards out.

He compiled 346 yards through the air while completing 22 of 32 passes. He threw for two touchdowns and no interceptions, finishing with a 125.3 passer rating. 212 of his 346 yards came in the first half. He also had four carries for two yards and a touchdown.

Stafford will travel to Carolina to face the Panthers in Week 2. He hasn't faced Carolina since 2011. He carved them up for 335 yards through the air, with five touchdowns and two interceptions.

Starting Stafford Week 1 is about as safe of a bet as it gets


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(9/4/2014) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford had a rough outing his last time out against the Giants in 2013. He'll look to rebound at home come Week 1.

Stafford completed 25 of 42 passes for 222 yards, with no touchdowns and two interceptions. This time around, he'll have a few new weapons to target, most notably Golden Tate. Last season, Stafford averaged 290.6 yards per game. The Giants allowed 223.3 yards through the air in 2013, which ranked 10th best in the league.

Regardless of the matchup, Stafford was one of the most consistent signal callers in Fantasy last season, and that hasn't changed. Starting Stafford against New York is about as safe of a bet as it gets for Week 1.

Lions sit out several starters for preseason finale


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(8/28/2014) The following starters will not suit up for the Lions Thursday night against the Bills: Quarterback Matthew Stafford, receivers Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate, running back Reggie Bush, center Dominic Raiola, guard Rob Sims and tight end Brandon Pettigrew, defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, cornerback Rashean Mathis, defensive end Jason Jones, safeties James Ihedigbo and Don Carey and linebacker Kyle Van Noy.

Matthew Stafford picked off once in dress rehearsal game


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(8/22/2014) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford was picked off once in an up-an-down outing Friday night against the Jaguars in exhibition play.

Stafford was intercepted by Andre Branch in the first quarter. He was limited to only one half of work with the first unit. He compiled 98 yards through the air while completing 10 of 16 passes. He had one interception and no touchdowns, registering 53.6 passer rating.

Quarterback: I don't care if Calvin Johnson sits entire preseason


by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(8/16/2014) Lions stud wideout Calvin Johnson has yet to play a down in the preseason - and quarterback Matthew Stafford claims he doesn't care if he remains nothing more than an interested viewer in the last two exhibition games.

"We've been practicing quite a bit," Stafford explained to the Detroit Free Press. "There's obviously a difference between practice and the game, there's no question. But Calvin and the decision makers need to do what's best for him and make sure that he's feeling as good as he can possibly feel come Game 1. ... We can talk and get a lot of things done verbally and on the practice field."

The Lions are wary of Johnson overworking in the preseason after injuries cost him two regular season games in 2013.


Matthew Stafford nearly perfect in second preseason game


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(8/15/2014) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford was nearly perfect as he struck paydirt twice in Friday's preseason game against the Raiders in Oakland.

Stafford hooked up with Golden Tate for a 28-yard strike on the opening drive of the game. On the ensuing series, he found Kris Durham for a 4-yard pass in the end zone. He was limited to three series with the first team and completed 9 of 10 pass attempts for 88 yards, with two touchdowns and no interceptions.

Matthew Stafford makes brief appearance in preseason opener


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(8/9/2014) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford made a brief appearance in Saturday's preseason opener against the Browns.

Stafford got the start and played just one series with the first stringers. He completed a short pass to Golden Tate for a gain of 14 yards and another short pass to Khris Durham for a gain of 4 yards in the opening drive. He completed 2 of 4 pass attempts for 18 yards, as his first drive resulted in a field goal.

Matthew Stafford displaying better mechanics -- so far


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(7/28/2014) Lions coach Jim Caldwell said he's impressed with quarterback Matthew Stafford's approach so far, especially the way he's been absorbing the playbook and paying attention to detail.

"He is getting better," Caldwell told the Detroit News. "His command of the offense has been good."

Caldwell said it was obvious how much work Stafford put in before coming to camp. "I was impressed when he came back that first of all he did not miss a beat," Caldwell said. "He’s a very, very smart guy. You could tell he’s worked at it even during the summer.

"In every facet when he came back, I could see improvement — footwork, accuracy, timing, command of the offense, all of those things. Now we get a chance to see if we can put it together a little bit more, add a few more things, keep progressing and then get some real challenges from our opposition as we start preseason."


'Precise' Matthew Stafford allowed to change plays


by Dave Richard | Senior Fantasy Writer
(6/13/2014) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford has "looked precise" and comfortable over the first two days of minicamp, says the Detroit News. The coaching staff has done a lot to help with his footwork, a problem for him over the past couple of seasons. As he's learning the details of a new playbook, Stafford will be allowed to change plays at the line of scrimmage. The idea behind it is if he sees a coverage that could make a route change to one of his receivers more favorable, he can take advantage. 

"He's done it before, he has a good understanding of it, and he even does some now," coach Jim Caldwell said. "That's kind of part of the package because he's got to have a little bit of autonomy from time to time to get you in the right play. You may be able to call a play, but he's out there on the field. He can see it happening. He can see the defense, so there's some times we have some overriding checks and things of that nature that we'll utilize."


Matthew Stafford absorbing new offense quickly


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(5/28/2014) Lions offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi said he's impressed with quarterback Matthew Stafford's ability to learn a new system, reports the Detroit Free Press.

"He’s really remarkably bright," Lombardi said. "I’ve heard that he was a smart player, but the speed and ease with which he picks things up he has even surprised me — and I had high expectations coming in. So I think he’s doing really well."


The Lions offense is going to be awesome


by Jamey Eisenberg | Senior Fantasy Writer
(5/8/2014) So it appeared for weeks the Lions wanted to move up to select receiver Sammy Watkins from Clemson. Maybe they didn't offer enough to jump up to No. 4 like the Bills, who drafted Watkins. Or maybe they were hoping if they stayed put at No. 10 that an elite player would land in their lap.

That's what happened on Thursday night when they drafted tight end Eric Ebron from North Carolina.

Think about this offense now. Matthew Stafford, Calvin Johnson, Golden Tate, Reggie Bush, Joique Bell and now Ebron. The only downside about this pick is Joseph Fauria loses all sleeper appeal, but we can live with that. He'll still score a few touchdowns, but Ebron could be a star.

You can't double cover him because of Johnson and Tate, and new offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi comes from New Orleans, where Jimmy Graham was a dominant force. The Lions wanted an upgrade at tight end, and Ebron is the answer.

He should be considered a potential starter in all Fantasy leagues with a late-round pick, and he's a late first-round selection in rookie-only drafts. The Lions are going to be fun to watch in 2014. 


Matthew Stafford: New offense will be just as aggressive


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(4/24/2014) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford began learning the team's new offense this week. While the scheme likely won't be as pass-heavy and will include more short crossing routes, Stafford said Detroit won't sacrifice its aggressiveness, reports the Detroit News.

“We were a pretty aggressive offense last year,” Stafford said. “And I am sure with some of the guys we have on the outside to make plays and in the backfield, whether it’s throwing the ball 50 yards in the air or throwing it 5 yards and letting guys run with it, we’re always about trying to make big plays.

“We are trying to be smart with the ball, too, but big plays in this league lead to points which inevitably lead to wins."


Matthew Stafford, Golden Tate building chemistry


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(4/24/2014) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford and free agent acquisition Golden Tate are using this week's voluntary minicamp to get accustomed to each other.

"Any time we miss a ball, I'm going straight to him, 'Hey, did I look back? Turn my head late? Did that feel right? What can I do better?'" Tate told MLive.com. "I think that's where it starts, just talking it out. I can't read his mind, he can't read my mind, so we're just talking it out."

Tate, the team's No. 2 receiver, said he's adjusting to Stafford's powerful arm. But he also praised Stafford's accuracy.  

"He's placed some balls on air and seven-on-sevens and I'm like, 'Wow, that's a great ball,'" Tate said. "For instance, I run a basic route, which is a 10-, 12-yard in, and he's put it right there, on the dot, where I can split the safeties and potentially score."


Matthew Stafford's accuracy under the microscope


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(3/25/2014) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford ranked 30th last year with a 58.5 percent completion rate. New coach Jim Caldwell is focused on raising that number significantly.

"Every single time you throw, you throw at a target," Caldwell said, per MLive.com. "I'm trying to hit your right ear, I'm trying to hit your left shoulder. Every single time, even when you're warming up. You work on your accuracy just constantly and you look at small targets. That's what gets you accustomed to being able to pinpoint your accuracy."

Caldwell said Stafford can be much more precise."He has the ability to do that," Caldwell said. "But the key is to be able to do it more consistently. That's what we're always striving for."


Lions passing game gets better


by Jamey Eisenberg | Senior Fantasy Writer
(3/12/2014) The Lions signed receiver Golden Tate to a five-year, $31 million contract Wednesday with more than $13 million in guaranteed money. I like this move for all the respective Fantasy parties involved.

Start with Tate, who is coming off a career year in 2013 with 64 catches for 898 yards and five touchdowns in Seattle. He has been stifled by the Seahawks run-heavy offense the past two years with Russell Wilson, but all that is about to change.

Matthew Stafford has attempted 630-plus passes the past three seasons, and even with new head coach Jim Caldwell expected to dial it down, he'll still be throwing a lot. And Tate, playing opposite Calvin Johnson, should see single coverage on almost every play.

This should be his first chance for a 1,000-yard season, and he should score at least six touchdowns. I like Tate as a No. 3 receiver in all leagues with a mid-round pick.

As for Stafford, this gives him another playmaker, which is key. Johnson is the best receiver in the NFL, and Reggie Bush and Joique Bell are solid out of the backfield. Joseph Fauria is a sleeper tight end, but Tate adds another dimension to this passing game. 

Put Stafford back on your list as a Top 5 quarterback, and I would draft him as early as Round 4 after the Top 3 come off the board in Peyton Manning, Aaron Rodgers and Drew Brees.


Lions to hand Matthew Stafford $17.5 million on Friday


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(2/27/2014) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford received a $27.5 million signing bonus when he agreed to a contract extension last July but agreed to defer $17.5 million of the payment. That balance is due Friday, reports the Detroit Free Press.

The bonus already has been accounted for in the Lions' salary cap.

Stafford ranked third with 4,650 yards last season but his completion percentage (58.5) declined and his interceptions (19) rose for the second straight year, the paper noted.


Ex-GM: Matthew Stafford has cost the Lions some wins


by Dave Richard | Senior Fantasy Writer
(2/12/2014) Former Bears general manager Jerry Angelo gave some notes on each starting quarterback around the league and didn't hold back when discussing Matthew Stafford of the Lions. 

"Stafford, in my eyes, not only did not win games for the Lions this year, but also LOST them for his team," Angelo wrote. "Carelessness with the ball, inaccurate throws and poor mechanics will prevent him from ever turning into an elite QB. Calvin Johnson masks a lot of his faults."

Stafford threw for 4,650 yards and 29 touchdowns with 19 interceptions last season. In the Lions' last four games -- all losses -- Stafford threw five interceptions and two touchdowns. 


New Lions OC cool with Matthew Stafford, but ...


by Dave Richard | Senior Fantasy Writer
(2/7/2014) New Lions offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi believes that Matthew Stafford has the makings of a great quarterback but admitted that he needs help with his footwork in order to become a more effective passer. Speaking at a press conference Friday, Lombardi said he watched all of Stafford's interceptions and walked away knowing he's not an interception machine but rather a guy who just needs to work on his technique. 

"Every quarterback can tighten up his footwork," Lombardi said. 

Stafford had 19 interceptions last year and 51 total over the last three seasons. His completion percentage has dropped over each of the last three seasons as well. 


Matthew Stafford: I'll go to Super Bowl only as participant


by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(2/1/2014) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford is 3,000 miles east of New Jersey as Denver and Seattle prepare for the Super Bowl. He wouldn't have it any other way.

Stafford is in London to promote his team's game against Atlanta on Oct. 26 at Wembley Stadium. In a radio interview, he spoke about his philosophy in regard to attending the ultimate NFL game.

"I've never been to the game, a lot of players do this," he said via the Oakland Press. "They don't want to go to the game unless they play in it. That's how I feel about it. Nothing against it, I don't want to be a fan ... I want to make sure when I go to the game that I'm suiting up and trying to win it."


Drew Brees believes in Joe Lombardi


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1/30/2014) Saints quarterback Drew Brees believes new Lions offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi is going to bring out the best in Matthew Stafford, according to mlive.com.

Lombardi worked as Brees' quarterbacks coach for five seasons before joining the Lions. Brees said he sees some similarities between the Lions and Saints personnel, and believes Lombardi will find a way to make things work in Detroit. Brees added that he knew Lombardi would be in line to get a coordinator job. "You can kind of tell when assistant coaches are just kind of ready for that next step -- to be a coordinator, to be a playcaller," Brees said. 


General manager says Matthew Stafford needs work


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1/26/2014) Lions general manager Martin Mayhew said quarterback Matthew Stafford needs some work, according to mlive.com. 

“I think there certainly has to be some work done,” said Mayhew. Stafford went into a slide over the second half of the year. While Mayhew was concerned, he doesn’t believe Stafford’s confidence has fallen. Mayhew added that he doesn’t put the end of the season collapse completely on Stafford either. The team will move forward with two quarterback coaches on staff, and could add a third. Offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi will be tasked with trying to fix Stafford. 


Lions to use no-huddle more


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(1/22/2014) Under new offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi, a protege of Saints coach Sean Payton, the Lions will be "more aggressive with a quarterback-driven scheme," reports MLive.com. "They will employ the no-huddle offense to put defenses in poor matchups, and Matthew Stafford could audible more at the line of scrimmage."

The Lions hope Stafford can become as efficient and consistent as the quarterback Lombardi used to coach, Drew Brees.


New Lions OC: Matthew Stafford 'not broken'


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(1/22/2014) New Lions offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi said Matthew Stafford, who's thrown at least 16 interceptions each of the past three seasons, is "not broken, that much is clear," reports Yahoo Sports. "There's an awful amount of talent there. His arm is something to behold. We used to sit in the Saints quarterback room and just marvel at his passes — all the depths, the whole field in play. He really can sling it. That's a great thing to have.

"I am not worried about Matthew," Lombardi added. "I am excited to be working with him, and we'll get started soon. I can't wait."

New head coach Jim Caldwell said earlier he planned to work on footwork and technique with Stafford, who tossed 12 interceptions over the final seven games this season.