The Matthew-Stafford-Lions #1 Overall-Guess-a-thon continues. Most of the ammo comes from PFT (see last story for a link or two). As you will note on my sidebar links, it's titled PFT (Amateur Football Talk) for a reason.
The site itself is a shameless "National Enquirer" style of football talk. The two stories centered around Stafford are that: He either hasn't signed, or has ditched Tom Condon as his agent AND that he has been bragging to his ex-teammates that he has a done deal with the Lions guaranteeing him $40 million.
As far as agent, I'm sure the NFL just hasn't fully updated all of their agent contract thingy's. The next point, though, could bother me for several reasons. The first word/sentence of this next paragraph is the most important so there is no misunderstanding:
IF the rumors of him talking about a done deal with the Lions are true:
1. It shows a severe lack of maturity, discipline, and ability to handle pressure on his part. If he can't even keep to himself (maybe mom and dad) a confidential deal that his prospective employer that is giving him $40 million wants kept secret, I hope they UN-"done deal" it.
2. If he can't tow the party line before he really has the contract, what kind of leader will he be for the team when things get rough, or even when they are going well? The players have responded well to Coach Schwartz and the front office has been in lockstep in their images, interviews, statements. Specifically, after the ifseason workouts started, you didn't hear current players complaining about the media restrictions, rather, they operated within them to forward the team image that the front office and coaching staff wants them to.
Stafford's immaturity will make him unable to lead the franchise -- the whole world knows the Lions want to trade the pick, but no one outside of Allen Park definitively knows what the Lions are going to do with that #1 overall, and that is in the best interest of the Lions.
3. IF Stafford let this leak (and let's face, immaturity is one of the big ? on him) then he is in one stroke blowing away all the smoke the Lions have worked so hard to build around their draft in one breath. Loose lips sink ships...and loose lips bugger drafts.
4. Thought: This front office likes to test people. They tossed their coaching candidates in front of the media to see how they would do. Their draft picks and FA coming in have been tested to be sure the Lions are getting what/who they think they are. Since Stafford's maturity level is of big concern, what if they pulled fast one?
What IF -- Mayhew and Lewand -- while working out a tentative deal -- gave him the impression it was a done deal, just the details had to be figured out -- and didn't say anything else.
Honestly, if you are smart and have any sense of adult seriousness (and he IS an adult) then not telling anyone would go without saying -- especially if he has been following the team "getting ready to lead the Lions" as he has been spouting off at every opportunity...
But by not saying it, they could see how he reacts...if he tells, whom he tells, how he does it... how does he handle the pressure of knowing he is "likely" #1 overall, and is "going to probably have" $40 million in the bank?
IF that is the case, then I would give him an Failing grade and move on. IF it isn't totally true, and it is just him running his mouth bragging what he thinks will happen, it still is a caution sign. IF it isn't true at all, the Lions front office will, I'm sure, know about it and be able to dismiss it like the "impending trade" of Jay Cutler to Washington that was on the site...
The key word? IF. And IF I were Stafford, and I didn't say anything, I'd be on the phone with Allen Park myself going "what do you want me to say, boss?"
Now, lets contrast this to whom most Lions fans favor: Aaron Curry. What is he up to these days? Oh, just helping out a 12 year old who battled lukemia raise awareness of the need for bone marrow donors. And of course, inviting him to come with him to the draft's "green room" in New York. Curry continues to show that he is a mature, classy individual to go along with being a heck of a player on the field. I've said before: They pick him, and I'm right there to buy a Curry Jersey -- and I'm not a jersey kind of guy. He would be a phenomenal face of a Detroit team with a strong defensive attitude.