Free Press sports writers, Dave Birkett and Carlos Monarrez, discuss what it will take the Lions to defeat the Ravens in Baltimore on Sunday, and then predict the outcome. Recorded on Wednesday, November 29, 2017.
Detroit Free Press

The giants did the right thing by putting Benning on the bench; Would the Lions have the courage to sit before a struggling and hurting Stafford?

Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford limps off the field with an ankle injury in the third quarter against the Vikings Thursday November 23, 2017 at Ford Field. (Photo: Kirthmon F. Dozier, Detroit Free Press)

The New York Giants did the right thing by leaving quarterback Eli Manning Makes Me ask me if the Lions of Detroit would ever have the guts to do the same with Matthew Stafford, if the situation required it.

On Tuesday, the manager Giants Jerry Reese and coach Ben McAdoo told Manning he would be sent to the bench to look better at the future and evaluate his young quarterbacks.

It's easy to paint Reese and McAdoo as indifferent villains for telling a future Hall of Famer and twice The Most Valuable Player in the Bowl will have to split the playing time when the Giants 2-9 end their season. nightmare.

But Reese and McAdoo did the right thing by offering to Manning play at least, to continue his streak of starting 210 straight games And Manning did the right thing by rejecting them and giving up an empty search.

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Yes I think this feels like a general manager and the coach is Surviving to tarnish the end of Manning's star career, you're only seeing this with the pbadion of a fan. Reese and McAdoo have an obligation to improve the team, and they will not improve it by having a 36-year-old quarterback with problems, such as Geno Smith and Davis Webb, respectively, second and third. Round draft picks, sit on the bench. Smith and Webb may not be the future. But Manning is definitely the past.


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I do not understand why the so-called franchise marshal position has become almost sacrosanct as an unquestionable anointing.

It's a game. It's a job. It's a business And if you do not do a job well enough, you should lose it. Manning did not want to be sent to the bank? I should have won more games. Still, that did not stop the players in the league, including Stafford, from lamenting the bench.

"It's surprising, obviously," Stafford said Wednesday. "He has been a great player in this league for a long time, he has given him a lot of respect, he brought a lot of success to that team."

This is the problem. Stafford seems to suggest that a quarterback who has led his team to success is entitled to some kind of loyalty. I asked Stafford if Manning's banquet is a reminder that he or any player can be sent to the bench at any time.


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"I do not know," he said. "I do not think much about that, I think you went out and played every week without knowing the future, obviously, just go out and play."

"This game is a violent game. Anything can happen. You never know what will happen in this game. Then, one goes out, prepares like crazy to play well, and then goes out and tries to do that. "

Stafford is right that football is brutal, he has given a lot of himself to the Lions. But that does not mean that Lions owe him more than the opportunity to compete for his work.

This is why Manning's bench is relevant to Stafford, who comes from an ankle injury that could limit If Stafford aggravates his ankle and struggles remarkably for it, it could undermine the Lions' best chance to win on Sunday in Baltimore and in a crucial five-game stretch that will determine his playoff chances.

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Let's face it, Stafford was not the main problem for the Lions, but it was not exactly the solution either. after that the Lions signed him prematurely for the richest contract in NFL history.

I think Stafford gives the Lions the best chance to win, when he's acceptably healthy. But when he staggers out of the field, I wonder if it's the best option. After he was hurt late in last week's loss to Minnesota, Stafford struggled to plant his right foot. He only hit 3 of 6 for 7 yards with an interception in two attempts and missed an open Golden Tate in a deep pitch.

But hey, Stafford was tough.

Caldwell should have sent Stafford to the bench when he struggled to return to the sidelines after he rolled up his ankle. Jake Rudock, who showed promise in the exhibition season, was heating up but never entered. Instead, Stafford limped again on the field and played ineffectively.

Yes, I can see you turning your eyes on Rudock, who is just a little bit. Backup of sixth round selection. Yes. Just a backup like Kurt Warner was before Trent Green got hurt. Just like Tom Brady was before Drew Bledsoe got hurt. Like Lou Gehrig before Wally Pipp got hurt.

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I like Stafford and I have nothing against him. I admire his hardness and the progress he has made to improve his mechanics and his overall game during his career.

But I'm not a fan of Lions. I do not care if Stafford or the team wins or loses. It is my job to question what affects the chances of winning or losing of Lions.

If you think it's crazy to wonder what Lions could do without Stafford, then the question is: do you want Lions to win or not? Do you want the Lions to win only with Stafford?

Maybe the Lions make the playoffs and everything will be academic. But if they do not and Stafford struggles while playing with injuries, how much do you think Caldwell and Lions general manager Bob Quinn would have the guts to make an unpopular but necessary move like putting his quarterback anointed and tough?

Contact Carlos Monarrez: [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @cmonarrez. Download our free Lions Xtra app on your Apple and Android devices.