The Detroit Lions regular season is almost here. In fact, it’s less than three weeks away. With so little time, there are some issues that the Lions and their fans should be concerned with. Obviously the lack of a pass rush and the trouble the Lions linebackers are having in coverage are two things that should be on your short list of issues. But what should be on top is the Lions’ backup quarterback situation.
That’s right. It’s August, we’re three weeks away from real football, and I’m complaining about players that may never play a snap in 2018. All I have to say to that is you’re damn right I’m complaining about it.
I know that Matthew Stafford hasn’t missed a game since 2010. I’m aware of that. By the way, can somebody go knock on wood right now please? The fact of matter is that Matthew Stafford is constantly in the danger zone. He’s been sacked 173 times in the last four years, and while he hasn’t missed a game with an injury, he keeps getting hurt.
Remember last season when Matthew Stafford was laying on the ground writhing in pain during the Thanksgiving day game? What would have happened to the Lions had he been forced to miss a couple games? What if he had been forced to miss the rest of the season? Do you remember what it looked like when Jake Rudock was forced to play even two series against the Ravens?
This year, I quiver in fear when I think about the possibility of Matt Cassel or Jake Rudock having to play any meaningful football games. You should too.
This is why the Lions need to do something about this issue right away. This is why the Lions need to trade for Jets quarterback Teddy Bridgewater.
At least two teams have reportedly called the Jets about Teddy Bridegewater https://t.co/9pfHS9XuxI— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) August 20, 2018
Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, you know the Jets have been shopping Teddy for the past week or so. According to Pro Football Talk, the are two teams interested in trading for him. The Lions need to be one of those teams. Here’s why.
Because Cassel and Rudock are horrible
Let’s just start it off with the obvious. You’ve seen it the past two weeks. Matt Cassel looks every bit of 36 at this point. He’s somehow managed to turn the ball over three times in the past two weeks against second and third team players. I frankly cannot understand why the Lions ever signed him. The guy in the film room and mentor thing is not a good enough excuse. Hire him as a coach if you want that.
Jake Rudock has no business on an NFL field.— Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) August 18, 2018
This really says it all. I cannot believe that one year ago, many Lions fans wanted the Lions to not pay Matthew Stafford his money and go with Jake Rudock as the starter and future of the franchise. Now Rudock faces the possibility of getting cut in favor of the guy I just complained about above.
Teddy can manage a game
What I like about Teddy is that you’re not going to get erratic play from him. Teddy is just going to do enough to keep the game intact. He’ll check down all day long if it means the Lions simply keep the ball and get into scoring position.
I’ve had a lot of things to say about Teddy not being the answer for the Vikings like so many of their fans thought he was, but the man is deadly accurate. In his two years as starter for the Vikes, he completed 64.9 percent of his passes. He didn’t throw nearly as often as Stafford does, but the ones he threw generally were on point.
With that type of accuracy, the Lions can dink and dunk down the field, slowly and painfully beating a team with time of possession. Imagine if the Lions had a run game to go with Teddy. We’re talking extremely boring wins here.
Teddy is young and Teddy is healthy
The obvious concern is that Teddy hasn’t really played a regular season game since 2015. He went down with a horrific injury during training camp before the 2016 season and has only thrown two regular season passes since then. One of those was an interception, but hey, give him a break.
In the last two weeks, Bridgewater has looked like his old self. He’s gone 17-of-23 for 212 yards, two touchdowns and an interception in the preseason. Sure he did throw a bad interception in the fourth quarter this past week, but he’s been pretty spot on otherwise.
Teddy Bridgewater avoids the rush and converts the first down pic.twitter.com/yu3fzKbmeS— Steve Palazzolo (@PFF_Steve) August 17, 2018
You can see here that those legs aren’t bothering him. He can still stick and move out there. If you’re worried about the injury, this should quell some of that worry.
There’s no better option
Realistically, this is as good as it gets for the Lions. They could go out and sign Mark Sanchez, Ryan Mallett or Scott Tolzien. They could also decide to shut down football operations for the year and forget I ever mentioned those names. The other option is to stay put and risk it all if Stafford goes down. That’s a nightmare.
Don’t let the price fool you, the Lions can get Teddy cheaper
Here’s the thing, the rumor out there is the the Jets want something like a fourth-round pick for Teddy. That’s not out of the question to think you can get that. Worse quarterbacks have garnered teams that kind of thing in the recent past.
The Jets are not going to get that, and here’s why. While I believe Teddy has healed up just fine, he’s still a guy that is recovering from a torn ACL, dislocated knee joint and other structural damage done to a leg that Teddy very well could have lost if things had gone worse.
The Lions should be able to offer a late-draft pick for him and get the job done. Or, if you want to get a little crazy, you could possibly send Ameer Abdullah on over for Teddy straight up. Either way, the Lions don’t have to sell the farm for Teddy.
If the Lions go this route, they’ll only come away better in the end. Teddy is the one quarterback available that allows the Lions to stay on the right path if everything else goes wrong.