The 2021 offseason is shaping up to be a massive one in terms of alleged starting quarterback trades.
The Lions hired a new head coach this week, Dan Campbell, who is a former Lions player.
It appears the team is taking a new direction, away from their 12 year veteran starter Stafford.
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) January 23, 2021
Stafford is only 32 years old so he presumably has years of play ahead of him.
Matthew Stafford gave it his all in Detroit. The man’s toughness cannot be denied. pic.twitter.com/j31GfRa3yQ
— NFL Update (@MySportsUpdate) January 23, 2021
NFL teams appear to be in need of experienced starting quarterback help so Stafford could have options.
Here are the three best teams that would seem to be a good fit for Matthew Stafford.
Matthew Stafford has never had a 1,000 yard rusher in his whole career. The one year where Stafford had a top 10 defense, Detroit finished 11-5.
— Locked On Colts Podcast (@LockedOnColts) January 23, 2021
There are many reasons to believe that Indianapolis rises to the top of the list.
The most obvious is that Philip Rivers who was the starting quarterback for the Colts in the 2020 season just announced his retirement from the NFL.
Rivers’ backup Jacoby Brissett‘s contract also expired at the end of the 2020 season so they are conceivably down two quarterbacks.
Not only did the Colts make the playoffs this year, but also they are a well-rounded team that can expect to contend in the years to come with Coach Frank Reich‘s leadership.
Another factor, though it is unclear how significant it is, is that both the Lions and the Colts play in a dome.
2. Washington Football Team
Matthew Stafford playing for “Riverboat Ron” Rivera would be fun to watch.
With Dwayne Haskins hastily escorted to the door and now signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Washington Football Team has to figure out the direction it is going in at quarterback.
Alex Smith is universally loved and is certainly a comeback story, but does he have the longevity to make it through a 17 game regular season (which is one extra game starting in 2021).
He missed the last three games of the season (two regular season games and the first round playoff game) with an injury on the same leg that he suffered the compound leg fracture and infection that nearly required amputation.
Alex Smith gave little insight to the severity of injury when he said:
“It has nothing to do with my limb salvage. It has nothing to do with any of that,” he said Jan. 10. “Obviously it happens to be on the same leg. This was a completely separate deal. … To call it a calf injury, I mean, I’m not going to get into a lot of the specifics. That’s how it’s getting tagged, but it’s obviously a little more complicated than that.”
Smith’s contract runs through the 2022 season, but the money is not guaranteed so Washington can save $13.6 million in cap space if they release him before June 1, 2021.
3. New England Patriots
Matthew Stafford — Arm talent, movement ability, toughness. Fringe Top 10 QB.
— Matt Bowen (@MattBowen41) January 23, 2021
The year after Tom Brady left New England was rough for the normally victorious Patriots.
Cam Newton had COVID-19 and other difficulties trying to fit in with this team.
A veteran like Matthew Stafford working with Bill Belichick is another interesting combination that could be fun to watch.
Because there could be a massive quarterback carousel this offseason, it is also possible that Jimmy Garoppolo could find his way back to New England which gives an opening for Stafford in San Francisco.
It remains to be seen where Matthew Stafford ends up.
One thing is known.
NFL jersey sales for Stafford and all the other quarterbacks projected to change teams this offseason could go through the roof.