Friday, Matt Patricia confirmed that Stafford hadn’t practiced all week. As a result, he is not on track to face the Dallas Cowboys, meaning backup Jeff Driskel will get another start. In spite of this, Patricia did confirm that Stafford is at the very least on the field with his teammates.
“Stafford is not really doing much right now. He is out there. Don’t anticipate him playing this weekend,” he said. “He’s been out there trying to do everything he can, but probably not for the game.”
Did the fact that Stafford was on the field preparing with his teammates mean anything for him playing?
“Not this Sunday, no,” Patricia confirmed.
Jeff Driskel’s Game Plan
Without Stafford, another week of backup quarterback Jeff Driskel is in the cards, and this week, the quarterback will have the advantage of being more mentally and physically ready to be the team’s starter. While Patricia downplayed the importance of that, he hinted the team would be ready to move with a game plan.
The Lions will be prepared for their offense to move forward with Driskel this week, perhaps a little bit more than they were ahead of last week’s surprise announcement.
“For us, it’s really just a steady process. Nothing changes too much,” Patricia said. “There is a little bit more focused on what he brings to the table and maybe some of his abilities which are a little bit different that help the overall understanding of how we’re going to play the game which is maybe a little bit different from three phases.”
Driskel played decently last week, showing he was capable of moving the offense. He put up 269 passing yards, 1 touchdown, 1 interception and rushed for 37 total yards on the ground. He only made one catastrophic mistake, the likes of which he will need to avoid to beat a team like Dallas.
Matthew Stafford’s Injury Timeline
After Stafford was revealed to be sidelined with the ailment, ESPN’s Adam Schefter explained that while the injury could be shorter term in nature, the likelihood is that it would be a week by week thing the Lions would have to watch. Here’s a look at what he wrote:
“Stafford is now considered week-to-week with an injury that one source said could sideline him for “this week or 3 weeks.” Stafford had started 136 consecutive regular-season games entering Sunday, the sixth-longest streak for a quarterback in NFL history.”
Before the injury, Stafford was rolling along and having an MVP caliber season. Safe to say that all of this puts a major damper on that, no matter how much time Stafford is to miss. Stafford is a warrior however, and has never been shy about trying to play in the past through the pain.
Obviously, the major hurdle for him moving forward will be finding a way to get cleared by the medical staff for any type of return in the month of November with this news. This could have Stafford on track to miss games through Thanksgiving for the Lions, unless he can heal up any quicker.
The timeline presented by Schefter certainly jibes with what the internet doctors have said they see thus far.
Matthew Stafford’s Injury
Listed on the report with a hip and back ailment, Stafford picked up the back injury while playing the Oakland Raiders. The hip trouble had been lingering since the Kansas City game, but Stafford had found a way to play through the pain of that, and was actually looking better on the injury report in the weeks since. The back injury limited him in practice most of the week leading up to the Chicago game, casting doubt on whether he’d actually play. Reports in the hours before hinted Stafford could be in trouble, and the decision was quickly made to sit him down on Sunday morning ahead of the game against the Bears.
Late last season, Stafford dealt with broken bones in his back as well and played through the pain, and the back injury in consecutive seasons has become a troubling trend for the quarterback. With the Lions depending on Stafford in not just the present but the future, they will have to be careful about how they proceed in this case.
This week, Stafford will miss yet another game. It will be interesting to see where Stafford is at come next week.