When new head coach Jim Caldwell was brought in to lead the Detroit Lions, he inherited an already potent offense. Add into the mix new Offensive Coordinator Joe Lombardi, who comes via New Orleans and plans to run his version of the Saints offense, and you have the makings of big things in the Motor City. After starting 2013 6-3, the Lions, and specifically quarterback Matt Stafford, struggled mightily down the stretch, going 1-6 in their last seven games. In that stretch, Stafford only averaged 260 ypg passing, throwing only 10 touchdowns while tossing 12 interceptions. His completion percentage in those seven games was 54%.
It was clear that the Lions were committed to helping Stafford improve this season. Caldwell is a noted mentor of quarterbacks and Lombardi was the quarterbacks coach in New Orleans, working with Drew Brees in that role the past five seasons.
Reggie Bush , who played a huge role in that Saints offense for a couple years, believes that the new offense will be great for Stafford.
"There is not a lot Matt can't do," Bush said. "I think coach Lombardi's gonna be really good for him. A guy who coached for a great quarterback Drew Brees and under Sean Payton and they've done a lot of great things down there in New Orleans and I was part of that. I think it's going to be a great offense for Matt and it's gonna be a big year for him."
In the world of Fantasy, I agree 100%! Stafford has about as juicy a set of offensive skill players as any quarterback in the league. He has the best wide receiver in the world, in Calvin Johnson. Free agent acquisition Golden Tate is a solid addition on the other side. He has two playmaking running backs that can catch the ball in Reggie Bush and Joique Bell . Throw in my favorite rookie of this year's draft, tight end Eric Ebron (who, by the way, has climbed from being the 20th TE selected in a FFWC draft two weeks before being taken by the Lions in the NFL Draft to being the 12th TE off the board in a FFWC draft last week, going in the 11th round), and you have an offense that any quarterback should be thrilled with.
I think Stafford is a top five quarterback in 2014 and high-stakes players agree. He's regularly being taken as the 5th QB in FFWC drafts that I've watched the past few weeks.