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Lions notes: Xavier Rhodes calls Matthew Stafford the 2nd-best player in the NFC North

Matthew Stafford got some serious respect from a rival that knows him pretty well.

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NFL: Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports

After Monday night’s game against the New York Jets—in which Matthew Stafford had one of the worst games of his entire career—it’s good to take a step back and recalibrate your perspective.

Thankfully, Vikings cornerback Xavier Rhodes brought that fresh outlook on Tuesday when he penned his top seven players in the NFC North for The Players’ Tribune.

Rhodes named two Detroit Lions players on the list, and both of them were players he’s more than familiar with. First, there was Golden Tate (No. 7).

Golden Tate can do it all. He catches everything. He’s a YAC monster. He blocks downfield. He’s the guy on all the Lions’ trick plays,” Rhodes wrote.

Then there was Stafford himself, who came in only behind Aaron Rodgers on Rhodes’ list.

“He’s the total package, man,” Rhodes wrote. “He’s great at avoiding the rush, he can break long runs and he isn’t afraid to step up in the pocket and take a hit. And he has a cannon for an arm.”

Obviously Monday wasn’t Stafford at his best, but the players on the field that know him best respect the man, and there’s definitely something to be said about that.

  • This doesn’t come as much of a surprise, but the Lions’ pass rush was the slowest to get to the quarterback in Week 1:

  • The always energetic Chris Spielman helped break down three key plays from Monday night’s blowout:

  • Prior to Monday night’s game, the Lions reportedly worked out Don Carey, who was recently released from the Jacksonville Jaguars. Considering the Lions’ special teams performance against the Jets, maybe a signing is coming?

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