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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.

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.

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."


Dan Orlovsky doesn't want to rehash the past


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(4/9/2014) Lions quarterback Dan Orlovsky, who's back with the team after his 2005-08 stint, doesn't like to relive the 0-16 season in 2008. Orlovsky punctuated that debacle by running out the back of his own end zone for a safety.

“There’s not much I can say to unmask the things that happened or erase those things,” Orlovsky told the Detroit Free Press. “My personal aspect of it is I knew I played well. We were just not a good football team. Did I have a part of that? Sure. I wish I played better in certain spaces, but I knew I played well, and I kind of look at it like this: It’s hard to play in this league for four years. It’s really, really hard to play in it for 10 years.

“I get the fears maybe with obviously fans and whatnot, but the organization knows what they’re doing, and I know I’m a good player, and I certainly hope to just be part of changing some of that past, whether it’s directly or indirectly.”

Orlovsky replaced Shaun Hill as Matthew Stafford's backup.


Lions sign Dan Orlovsky to one-year deal


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(4/2/2014) The Lions signed quarterback Dan Orlovsky to a one-year deal. He'll replace Shaun Hill as the backup to Matthew Stafford.

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 not sold on Kellen Moore as No. 2 quarterback


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(2/24/2014) With veteran backup Shaun Hill headed to free agency, Lions general manager Martin Mayhew admitted he isn't comfortable with third-year quarterback Kellen Moore backing up Matthew Stafford, reports MLive.com. Moore hasn't taken a regular-season snap.

"I haven't seen enough of him in actual games to say that you just roll with him and you feel great about it," Mayhew said of Moore, the Boise State product. "The idea of signing a veteran is appealing to us. However, he's done a lot of things in practice that makes you feel like he's very capable, so that's kind of an open situation right now."


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."


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.


Jim Caldwell focused on Matthew Stafford's footwork


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(1/20/2014) New Lions coach Jim Caldwell will work on technique with quarterback Matthew Stafford, who tossed 11 interceptions in the final six games. “I’ve watched every throw Matthew made last season, because when I came here and met with him, I wanted to have some familiarity with him," Caldwell told SI.com.

"We didn’t go through film together, but we talked about what I saw, and I listened to him, and it was very beneficial. We have used a set of drills in coaching over the years that I think has added some consistency to all the quarterbacks we’ve coached. The great majority of poor throws -- people look at the arm, and that’s important obviously, but I think footwork is the key.

"I can pull up any game film and show you how our footwork drills help you. In a nutshell, the feet and eyes work together. If I’m throwing in a particular direction, my footwork is pointing in the same direction, directly at the target. We’ll work on it with Matthew, and he will do them flawlessly.”


Can Jim Caldwell get the best out of Matthew Stafford?


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(1/15/2014) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford threw 11 interceptions and lost two fumbles in the final six games as Detroit collapsed and missed the playoffs, costing coach Jim Schwartz his job. New coach Jim Caldwell will be judged in large part on how Stafford performs the next couple years.

Tony Dungy, the Super Bowl-winning coach turned TV analyst, noted Caldwell was in his first year as quarterbacks coach in Indianapolis when Peyton Manning broke out in 2004 with 49 touchdowns and 10 picks.

"I know what we talked about when we got to Indianapolis is they had a very, very explosive offense and we talked about keeping that explosiveness but not being a high-risk team and taking care of the football and knowing how to manage the end of the game," Dungy told the Lions' website.

"Once Peyton (Manning) really understood what Jim was trying to do, he went from a very explosive player to a guy in 2004 who threw 49 touchdowns and (10 interceptions) and that's what I think you're going to see from Matthew.

"You're going to see him learn that you can be explosive and not be high risk and that there are times when you manage the game and win the game, by not only what you do, but by what you don't do. I just think for a young quarterback, he'll really blossom under Jim."


Matthew Stafford meeting with Lions' head-coaching candidates


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(1/7/2014) Quarterback Matthew Stafford met with one candidate to be the Lions' head coach, Ravens offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell, and will meet with more, reports the team's website. However, there's no indication Stafford will have a say in the hiring process.

"It’s something, however much they ask me to be a part of it, I’ll be a part of it," Stafford said in a radio interview on the Albom Show. "I’m not knocking on the door. They asked me to sit in on that one, and as more and more interviews happen, whether I’m in town to sit with them and talk or whether we talk on the phone, I’m sure I’ll have some involvement in that process."

Stafford said he and Caldwell did not discuss the quarterback's performance, which declined dramatically toward the end of the year.

"Actually, none of that happened," Stafford said on the show. "Honestly, it was just he and I sitting down and talking. He told me he watched basically every play of our season. He picked my brain about our team, and I picked his about his philosophy in coaching and all that kind of stuff."


Matthew Stafford disappointed in dismissal of offensive coaches


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/30/2013) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford said he was stunned by the firing of coach Jim Schwartz and disappointed that Detroit's entire offensive staff was let go, reports MLive.com. "I'll miss him a ton," Stafford said of offensive coordinator Scott Linehan.

"He, (quarterback coach Todd Downing), and really all the guys on offense, we did a lot of really good things here. In five years, set a bunch of records and played some of the best offensive football this franchise has ever seen."

Stafford was brutal in Detroit's 1-6 finish, throwing 10 touchdowns and committing 14 turnovers.


Matthew Stafford tosses one touchdown Week 17


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12/29/2013) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford tossed one touchdown Week 17 against the Vikings.

Stafford finished the game 22 of 33, with 217 yards and a touchdown. Stafford struggled without Calvin Johnson. Kevin Ogletree was Stafford's primary target, receiving 10 targets. Stafford also had a tough time avoiding Minnesota's pass rush, getting sacked five times. Stafford finishes the season with 29 passing touchdowns. 


Matthew Stafford looking at great matchup Week 17


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12/27/2013) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford is looking at a fantastic matchup Week 17 against the Vikings.

Minnesota is the worst team in the league against opposing quarterbacks. The team has allowed quarterbacks to average 26.20 Fantasy points per game, the highest rate in the league. They've given up a league-high 36 touchdowns in 15 games. In the past three games, the team has given up 10 passing touchdowns. 

Stafford has struggled as of late, tossing just one touchdown and five interceptions over the past three games. In his first game against Minnesota this season, Stafford threw for 357 yards and two touchdowns. The team has nothing to play for, so it's unclear whether Calvin Johnson will play.  If he's out, Stafford will be down his primary weapon in the passing game. If Johnson can go, Stafford is a good start. If not, he's questionable. 


Costly mistake eliminates postseason hopes for Matthew Stafford


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(12/22/2013) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford continued his struggles as he was held out of the end zone during Sunday’s overtime loss to the Giants in Week 16.

Stafford was picked off by Justin Tuck late in the second quarter. He was then picked off by Will Hill, who returned it back for a touchdown, erasing a seven-point advantage in the fourth quarter. Stafford has 11 interceptions over the last five games. He completed 25 of 42 passes for 222 yards, with no touchdowns and two interceptions in a 23-20 overtime defeat.

The Lions, who are now eliminated from playoff contention, will end the season at Minnesota next Sunday.

Matthew Stafford still viewed as must-start option


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(12/19/2013) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford may be in line for a bounce back performance in Week 16 against the Giants.

Stafford threw three second-half interceptions and a late-game touchdown against the Ravens in Week 15. He was limited to 235 yards in an 18-16 loss. 13 of Stafford's 17 interceptions have come at home this season. Stafford has still managed to average 329.4 passing yards through seven games at Ford Field.

The Giants have allowed only one 300-yard passer over the last nine games. New York has yielded 229.0 passing yards per game this season. Opposing quarterbacks have averaged 18.57 Fantasy points per game this season against the Giants.

Our Fantasy experts still have Stafford ranked in their Top 5 for Week 16. Consider him a must-start Fantasy option against the Giants.

Jim Schwartz not contemplating quarterback switch


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/17/2013) Lions coach Jim Schwartz said he has not considered benching quarterback Matthew Stafford, even for a short time to get his mind right, reports the Detroit Free Press. "Matt's our quarterback and he's going to play well for us," Schwartz said.

Stafford has accounted for seven touchdowns and 11 turnovers the past four weeks after throwing three second-half interceptions in Monday's loss to Baltimore. Detroit hosts the Giants in Week 16.


Matthew Stafford throws three second-half interceptions


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/16/2013) The sloppiness continued Monday night for Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford. He has 11 turnovers in his past four games after getting intercepted three times in the home loss to Baltimore.

Off target throughout the game but also victimized by two Calvin Johnson drops, Stafford finished 18 of 34 for 235 yards and a late touchdown.

In the third quarter, Ravens nose tackle Haloti Ngata deflected Stafford's late throw and defensive tackle DeAngelo Tyson picked it off. Stafford made a worse throw over the middle in the fourth quarter -- an easy interception for linebacker Daryl Smith. Stafford opened Detroit's final drive by sailing one to safety Matt Elam.

Stafford gave the Lions a brief lead when he hit tight end Joseph Fauria for a 14-yard score with 2:27 remaining. Stafford also surpassed 4,000 passing yards for a third straight season. But he continues to revert to bad habits, like throwing sidearm and off balance when he doesn't need to.

Stafford plays the Giants in Week 16.


No reason to worry about Matthew Stafford


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/11/2013) Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford has produced six touchdowns and eight turnovers his past three games. He completed a season-low 10 passes in the Week 14 blizzard in Philadelphia. After all that, he's the No. 3 Fantasy quarterback.

Stafford plays the Ravens on Monday Night Football, and fortunately the game is at Ford Field. In 29 career home games, Stafford has accounted for 65 touchdowns (6 rushing). He's been dynamite against the AFC, too, throwing 36 touchdowns against eight interceptions in 14 games.

The Ravens give up the 9th-fewest Fantasy points (17.2 per game) to opposing quarterbacks. But Matt Cassel (22 points) and Ben Roethlisberger (23) fared well the past two weeks vs. Baltimore. Stafford is better than those guys, has better weapons. He's expected to get back running back Reggie Bush from a calf injury.

Consider Stafford a top-5 play Week 15.