Matthew Stafford: I don’t answer to Rich Gannon

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CBS analyst Boomer Esiason questioned Matthew Stafford‘s leadership last month. This week, CBS analyst Rich Gannon called Stafford an “overpaid” quarterback who has become a “stat king” by padding his stats late in losses.

Stafford’s answer: He doesn’t care what anyone outside the locker room thinks.

I don’t need to answer to Rich Gannon,” Stafford said Thursday, via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press.

Stafford has completed a career-high 67.8 percent of his passes for 2,111 yards with 14 touchdowns and six interceptions in eight games. But he has nine turnovers in five losses and one in three victories.

Stafford was asked why he thinks he has become a lightning rod for former NFL quarterbacks turned analysts.

“I don’t know,” Stafford said. “I mean, they’re free to talk about whatever they want to talk about and however they want to talk about anybody. I don’t really pay any attention to it. Obviously, I didn’t know it happened, so maybe that makes them mad, I don’t know? I don’t really have any answer for you. It doesn’t bother me. I answer to the guys in my locker room or our coaches and all that way before anybody else.”

Stafford’s $27 million yearly average ranks fifth in the NFL behind only Aaron Rodgers, Matt Ryan, Kirk Cousins and Jimmy Garoppolo.

41 responses to “Matthew Stafford: I don’t answer to Rich Gannon

  1. He’s behind Garropolo and he’s being trashed as being “overpaid” according to Rich Gannon? While his 10 years haven’t exactly been great, maybe Gannon ought to examine his measuring stick.

  2. I think those guys are jealous and bitter because Stafford makes more in one season than they made in their entire careers.

  3. They are right. He seems like a nice guy so it’s nothing personal but he is the king of padding his stats. The old school guys on TV call him out and act annoyed because they know he couldn’t have the pay day he has now if he played in the 80s or 90s. He’s a product of the pass happy league.

  4. Hard to hold a QB accountable for a crapfest defense that puts him behind early and often.
    typical of Rich Gannon the man whos paid to talk and still says ‘atheletic’ repeatedly.
    there is no such word.

  5. I never understood the hate for Stafford. The dude has thrown for 5,000 yards before and 6 or 7 times for 4,000 yards. Look at the lack of talent around him. Other than Calvin Johnson, he’s never had a true receiver worth anything other than maybe Tate. Caldwell was a lousy coach, their defense has been suspect and no real weapons around him. Stafford is a legit top 10 qb easily. The hate on him is ridiculous.

  6. He doesn’t look like he’s comfortable or confident this season. Add to that the goofy play calling and the bad OL and you’ve got a dysfunctional offense with bad looking quarterback play.

  7. Matthew Stafford is correct: He doesn’t answer to Rich Gannon.
    Of course, Gannon doesn’t answer to Stafford, either.
    Gannon, who isn’t wrong, was doing exactly what he’s paid to do, and that’s analyze players for the network that employs him.
    Stafford HAS put up a lot of nice numbers. But his career record against winning teams is abysmal, and neither he nor the Lions have much to show for it except for his personal stats — many of which DO often come at the end of blowouts.
    As for the genius who referenced Jimmy Garoppolo, your logic is flawed. Just because another poorly-run franchise ponied up ludicrous money for an unproven quarterback doesn’t mean Stafford isn’t overpaid.

  8. Gotta be honest, I’ve only seen him play a few games each year and from a casually indifferent distance I’ve kind of vaguely thought of Stafford as a QB on the verge of taking it to an elite level. That is until I stop and realize he’s in his 10th year. At this point he is what he is, people expecting anything else have to ask themselves what that expectation is based on. As far as stat padding in garbage time there’s a long list of QB’s whose numbers benefit from the way D is played in garbage time, he is hardly alone.

  9. At the same time the dude plays for the freaking Detroit Lions whose name has been synonymous with losing for my entire lifetime and its not like the Lions have stacked that roster with talent around him. The Lions have an average roster with a 1st year HC & surprise they’re an average team. I think a lot of these analysts just like to hear themselves talk.

  10. Matthew is a pretty good QB. This is a tough league… and this is a team game. He needs a little more help. If he was a very good QB maybe he wouldn’t need as much help.
    Sometimes he tends to hold the ball too long. And can get rattled. But he’s probably in the top 12.

  11. He could care even less about stats than he does cry baby analysts that want to pick him apart. All he has done is make Detroit relevant with no defense or running game since he got there. Kid could play in any era of football, if you pay attention you would know that. Yea he may be another Marino but that not his fault nor would it be a bad career.. Gannon, Esiason dont even know this dude and are not near as talented, He has re done his contract for the betterment of the team several times so they could build a supporting cast but not his fault that has not happened yet….Yes Rich you do tend to throw when your behind, which he has done very well to win games not just pad stats dh

  12. As a Viking fan I can say Stafford is one of the toughest QBs I’ve ever seen. That’s a big part of being a leader if you ask me. Winning seams to be an institutional problem. He looks like he’s going down the Archie Manning road except with a much bigger bank account.

  13. It’s a fair point. He has looked AWFUL in some of those losses and he doesn’t seem to care. In fact, instead of attacking Gannon maybe he should try to play better so he isn’t considered overpaid. To me he looks like a guy who’s happy to be making $28M and could care less about how terrible he’s playing. Some of the better QBs would probably have agreed they need to play better. The fact that Stafford doesn’t seem to care says a lot about Stafford. He’s got five more years left on his contract. The Lions are going nowhere with him.

  14. Market + timing = pay. Not difficult, Rich Gannon, but then you never got a payday like they do today…jealous?

  15. Stafford has been saddled with bad defenses and no running game (One 1000-yard rusher in 9 years) for the vast majority of his career. He’s good enough to take a team to the Super Bowl. People seem to forget that their are 10 other starters on offense and 11 on defense.

  16. Stafford has been in an extremely pass heavy system for his entire career. When the QB throws 40 3 yard passes a game, the defense plays in tight, leaving no room for any RB to succeed. This is not a matter of personnel, this has always been a matter of the Detroit Lions trying to force a pass heavy offense. Martz, Mariucci, Caldwell, Linehan, Lombardi, Cooter…these are coaches who were tied to success with very good QBs and were brought in to do the same with Stafford. He’s not an elite QB + the scheme is terrible. You don’t build around a QB. The QB should be the final piece of the puzzle. As usual, the Lions have been doing things ass backwards for decades.

  17. ‘What an arm’ Stafford throws behind his receivers half the time, which takes away their YAC. Golden got his YAC in spite of ‘What an arm’ Stafford.
    Rodgers, Brees, Brady, Rivers catch their receivers ‘in stride’ almost all the time.

  18. ‘What an arm’ Stafford plays like a journeyman QB most of the game, then wakes up the last 4 minutes.
    Rodgers, Brees, Brady, Rivers are working the ebbs of momentum throughout all the game.

  19. As long as a Ford owns this team, they will never, ever go to a Superbowl. With or without Stafford, who’s a little above an average QB. Period……Like s fan.

  20. It is very clear as good as Stafford is, one thing he isn’t is “CLUTCH” he isn’t like the great qbs of the past and present. He doesn’t pull off the big wins, the comebacks, or Hail Mary’s. He goes for the safe passes instead of pushing it deep for the big plays. It might be the cast around him but he should have had at least ONE deep push in 10 years.

  21. Stafford has led the league twice in both 4th Quarter comebacks and game winning drives. 8 of his 9 wins in 2016 occurred in this manner. He is 15th all-time in game winning drives and 11th all-time in comebacks. Which is really good.

  22. Rich Gannon, Quarterback expert…
    Rich Cannon started his career with the Minnesota Vikings in 1987. He didn’t make any significant strides until he was an Oakland Raider in 1999 at the age of 33. He then played in the Superbowl when he was 37 and was the MVP for the 2002 season. With that in mind… Stafford’s career highlights must be in his future. As far as Garbage time stats? 26 come back victories for a guy that hasn’t realized his full potential yet isn’t bad. The truth is, Stafford has not played that well this year; Is it because there is an assemblance of a running game? Is it because of the new coach? Nope… unfortunately I think it goes deeper. I think he is suffering from Detroit Lion Organization burn out… I have watched it happen to good and great players that have played in Detroit. I fear a change of scenery is the only fix for him. Then I fear we will watch him win big games for another organization. I think Patricia is going to be a good coach, I just don’t think he’ll get it done with a burnt out Matt Stafford. I’m a Lions fan until I die. I will watch on Sunday and hope I’m wrong about the team and Matt. With that said… Go Lions!

  23. Yet another guy that people list ahead of Andy Dalton. Meanwhile, Dalton just keeps winning games and posting good stats. Yeah yeah…playoff losses. Coaching matters.

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