After his first two seasons in the NFL were riddled with injuries, Matthew Stafford dealt with a lot of questions this past offseason about if he could stay healthy throughout an entire season. Although Stafford pledged to play all 16 regular season games, many were skeptical. In fact, most predictions for the 2011 season included two records for the Lions -- one for if Stafford stayed healthy and one for if he didn't.
As you all know, Stafford didn't just make it through the season, he put together a franchise-best season for a quarterback. He played all 16 regular season games and one playoff game, and along the way he put up some amazing numbers. In response to his breakout year, Pro Football Weekly and the Pro Football Writers of America recognized Stafford by naming him the Comeback Player of the Year.
The award has been given out since 1972 (except 1985) and the last Lions’ player to win Comeback Player of the Year was Greg Landry in 1976. In 1992, PFW and PFWA joined together for annual awards.
Stafford is also up for the Associated Press’ Comeback Player award to be announced on Super Bowl eve.