Matthew Stafford and the Detroit Lions took the NFL by storm last season, ending an 11 year playoff drought and highlighting one of the best passing offenses in the league. On a personal note, Stafford was finally able to bounce back from two injury riddled seasons worth of production and gifted fantasy owners with a season that saw him pass for over 5,000 yards and 41 touchdowns to just 16 interceptions. That performance, coupled with a good preseason, had many fantasy owners salivating over what he might do this season.
Unfortunately, that success has not translated into this season so far.
Through three games, Stafford has accounted for just a little over 800 yards and 3 touchdowns to 4 interceptions. Compared to the nine touchdowns and multiple scores in his first six games last season, this is pretty weak production. Throw in that he is also fighting a hamstring injury that has him questionable for this week and you have the recipe for another disappointing outing, even though the Lions are going against the Vikings, who are allowing an average of 20 fantasy points per week to opposing quarterbacks.
This poor start coupled with injuries already should have Stafford owners seeing warning signs flashing across their screens, and with good reason.
Despite the potential for a breakout game and a favorable schedule during fantasy playoff time, I would recommend that any Stafford owner start putting out feelers for trades. As much as the potential is there for Stafford, the writing on the wall is that this is going to be a rough season for him and the Lions. If you emphasize his upside and target another potential breakout QB who is struggling, like a Cam Newton who I believe will turn it around, you may be able to unload Stafford with a good return.
Whatever you do, though, don't just give him away. That Detroit offense, even though it's been disappointing, does have potential to be as explosive as a year ago, so even an underachieving Stafford is better than the bottom half of the QB barrel.
Final Verdict: Sell
James LeBeau is a sports contributor for CraveOnline Sports and you can follow him on Twitter @JleBeau76 or subscribe on Facebook.com/CraveOnlineSports.
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