Former NFL GM Hints at Rapid Timeline for Matthew Stafford Trade

Matthew Stafford

Getty Matthew Stafford fires a pass against Jacksonville.

Now that Matthew Stafford is officially on the market, the question becomes who is interested and where the Detroit Lions quarterback will get to call home next.

Impatient fans are wondering who could be in the mix and when a potential deal could get done, and the answer to at least one of those questions could come in rapid order for the league. Former league general manager Scott Pioli was on Good Morning Football, and explained that the Lions could hammer out a deal with Stafford soon, perhaps even within the next two weeks. The reason as he sees it has to do with the way the announcement came about after the Lions had their new brain trust in place.

Pioli said:

“They let 31 other teams know hey, we’re open for business. To me, my instincts are telling me they’re looking to get a trade done and they’re looking to get a trade done quickly. They had to know about this earlier than what they let the rest of the football world know. I think this may be a situation like Alex Smith in 2018 where they let the world know he was going to be available via trade. This trade will actually get agreed to in principle before the Super Bowl. I could see a trade being agreed to within the next two weeks, and that Matthew Stafford could have an idea where he’s headed in very short time. I could see the trade getting done within the next two weeks.”

A timeline like this would be a rapid development on a deal, but as Pioli pointed out, wouldn’t be unprecedented. Interestingly, Pioli also interviewed for Detroit’s general manager job. He didn’t shed any light on the specifics of what he might know, but it’s more than possible he has a good inkling of what figures to play out over the coming weeks with regards to the Lions.

This potential deal might not be official until March when the new league year starts or later than that, but at the very least, the framework of a deal could be set quite quickly according to some.

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Matthew Stafford Trade Talks Underway

The timeline Pioli talks about could end up be spot on if new reports about Stafford’s availability are any indication. As ESPN’s Adam Schefter explained, teams have already begun reaching out to the Lions about a potential deal and trying to figure out the asking price for the Lions on their quarterback.

The minute Stafford was revealed to be on the market, the phone lines of Brad Holmes and company likely lit up, so this is no surprise. At this point, it simply goes to show that the Lions are ready and willing for a move, as are the other teams they are speaking with at this point in time. For any trade to happen, willing partners have to engage and the process is now officially underway as it relates to that.

Lions Asking Price for Matthew Stafford Likely High

Detroit knows they have to trade Stafford and it’s no question the move will likely happen. Even such, that shouldn’t dampen the market or lower the asking price. At 32, Stafford is right in the middle of his NFL prime and should fetch a huge return for the Lions, who could use the assortment of picks to help bolster their roster in other spots and build a more complete team. The Lions could use some extra picks not just this year but in 2022 as well. With the number of teams expected to have interest, the Lions can afford to be choosy and drive a hard bargain on Stafford with any team who calls on him across the league. A first-round pick and other picks from 2021 should be the lowest the team considers going at this point.

A potential bidding war for Stafford could already be underway, and fans should be aware that there could be a fast resolution to this situation coming soon.

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