Earlier on Tuesday, we polled Detroit Lions fans to see if they wanted Matthew Stafford to start in the season finale against the Green Bay Packers. With both teams out of the playoff race, there’s little to be won on Sunday. As of this publication, 64 percent of fans would still like to see Stafford start the game—although many of those (myself included) don’t want to see him play the entire game.
It looks like the majority of fans may get their wish, as Jim Caldwell told the media he has no intentions of resting any of the Lions on Sunday. He was asked whether he has given any consideration to benching starters like Stafford, and Caldwell answered frankly, “No.”
Many view games toward the end of the season as an opportunity to get a closer look at younger players in a real game setting. Caldwell doesn’t quite see things the same way.
“I think when you look at us, we probably played as many young guys as anybody,” Caldwell said. “We have seven rookies that play a considerable amount of playing time for us, and we expect that to continue.”
Through 10 weeks in the season, the Lions were 15th in rookie snaps according to Pro Football Focus.
When it comes down to it, Caldwell insists that Week 17 is a valuable resource for his staff and his players, regardless of their experience.
“We’ve got a game left to play. It’s an opportunity for our guys to get better. We have 16 opportunities and you can’t take them for granted.”