After missing half of last season due to fractured bones in his back, Matthew Stafford will be back under center for the Lions. It’s too bad his back didn’t let him continue, as he was having a stellar season, throwing for just under 2,500 yards with 19 TDs and only five picks – comparable numbers to what he posted in his breakout ’11 campaign. During all seven seasons between ’11-’17 he threw for at least 4,200, averaging 28 TDs.
The back injury is definitely a concern, especially for a 32-year-old QB who’s entering his 12th season. It’ll be interesting to see if the deep ball suffers for Stafford, as he’s made a living airing it out to the likes of Calvin Johnson and now Kenny Golladay. If Detroit falls out of contention yet again, you’ve got to wonder if the veteran will be playing during your fantasy playoff run.
Detroit has surrounded Stafford with weapons, most recently RB D’Andre Swift. He has proven WRs in Golladay in Mavin Jones, as well as last year’s first-round draft pick TE T.J. Hockenson. During his career, Stafford has never really had a ground game to help balance the offense, but with Swift that may change. As long as he’s able to make it through another season, expect Stafford to be his usual self, with over 4,000 yards and around 30 TD tosses.