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Saturday open thread: Should Matthew Stafford be playing in the Lions’ season finale?

Has Stafford earned the right to make that decision on his own?

Detroit Lions v Tennessee Titans Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford has practiced in a limited fashion for the past two days, which—by Matthew Stafford standards—means he’s almost certainly going to play in Sunday’s season finale against the Minnesota Vikings. Stafford is currently listed with three separate injuries: partially torn ligaments in his hand, damaged rib cartilage, and an ankle injury that was serious enough to sideline him for the entirety of Saturday’s game against the Buccaneers after suffering it on the first drive of the game.

With nothing on the line, there’s no reason for Stafford to play this game, but because he’s such a competitor and has a deep love of the game, we all know that he is going to be out there if he can be out there.

So today’s Question of the Day is:

Should the Lions let Matthew Stafford play on Sunday?

My answer: This is a tough one for me. Part of me believes that Stafford has been loyal and committed to this team for 12 years. He deserves to be able to make this decision on his own, as long as he’s medically cleared.

But the other part of me believes that’s exactly why you need to step in and tell him no. He’s such a fierce competitor that I’m not sure he’s the best judge on whether he should play or not. Honorably, his mind is only on the present, but both he and the Lions should have his future as the priority right now. Stafford is the team’s most valuable asset right now, and whether that means trading him elsewhere in 2021 or building a new team around him, Detroit should protect that asset with nothing to lose by benching him on Sunday.

Of course, there’s a third part of me that just wants to watch the guy play. Games are so much more entertaining with him dealing the ball rather than having to watch Chase Daniel or David Blough struggle through four quarters. Plus, if this is the last we see of Stafford in a Lions uniform, I’d love to see a more memorable end to his career in Detroit than limping off the field against the Bucs.

Your turn.

Poll

Should the Lions let Stafford play on Sunday?

This poll is closed

  • 40%
    Yes
    (471 votes)
  • 59%
    No
    (704 votes)
1175 votes total Vote Now