ESPN’s Michael Rothstein writes that Lions QB Matthew Stafford could be entering a “crossroads” in 2016 season.
Stafford’s contract is up after the 2017 season, but his 2016 performance will end up having a big impact on future negotiations regarding a contract extension. Rothstein believes a solid 2016 season could be enough for Stafford to ultimately become the highest paid player in the NFL for at least a short period of time.
According to Rothstein, there are three real options for the Lions moving forward:
- Lock up Stafford and ensure he’ll be their quarterback long term.
- Allow him to play out his contract with the possibility of him testing the free agent market in 2018.
- Move on from him and target a quarterback high in next year’s draft.
If the Lions put together a winning season, Rothstein expects the team to keep HC Jim Caldwell and possibly consider an extension for him. This could also lead to them signing Stafford to an extension.
- Todd Archer of ESPN does not think the Cowboys did enough to improve their defensive line and is skeptical about their possible production this season.
- According to Archer, the Cowboys’ sense throughout training camp was that DE Randy Gregory, who is facing a 10 game suspension, would not be available to play in 2016.
- Regardless, Archer does not believe Gregory would be able to contribute much once he is eligible to play, given he missed the preseason and all of Dallas’ offseason activities.
- Michael Rothstein writes that the Lions’ decision to keep just four receivers on their roster could leave them in a tough position if they were to sustain an injury or two at the position.
- Rothstein mentions that TE Eric Ebron and RB Theo Riddick could fill in at receiver if needed.
- In regards to LB Deandre Levy, Rothstein believes he has a shot of getting back to his previous form after he missed nearly the entire 2015 season due to a hip injury.
- Josina Anderson reports the Vikings chose to start QB Shaun Hill for Week 1 over recently acquired Sam Bradford because he has been in Minnesota’s system for two years and “knows all the plays.”
- However, Anderson‘s source also said Bradford “is close” to being ready to start.