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Matthew Stafford: Will He Be the Answer For the Lions?

Old AccountSenior Writer IApril 25, 2009

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 22:  Quarterback Matthew Stafford of USC passes the football during the NFL Scouting Combine presented by Under Armour at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 22, 2009 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Scott Boehm/Getty Images)

We are hours away from the 2009 NFL Draft. This draft consists of one of the more intriguing classes we have had. From Michael Crabtree to Jason Smith and Mark Sanchez, there is sure to be some big surprises at Radio City this year.

Yet, the draft does officially have one pick in the books, which is the No. 1 overall pick. At 11 pm Friday night: " With the first pick in the 2009 NFL Draft, the Detroit Lions select Matthew Stafford, quarterback from the University of Georgia."

It is finally a done deal! This hasn't been a surprise to many NFL fans, being the Lions have targeted Stafford since his Pro Day and have been negotiating a contract since.

The official contract is a six year deal with $41.7 million guaranteed!

Is there anyway Stafford is worth this contract?

If we think this through, he was not wanted by the few fans left of the Lions, who wanted Aaron Curry, who is considered the top prospect on this year's board.

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There were also other executives and others who believed they should have taken Mark Sanchez with the first pick over him.

The No. 1 pick always brings the hype and pressure on each player who gets this honor. When taking this selection, the Lions hope this kid will turn into a Hall Of Famer or in the Lions case, "The Savior Of The Franchise."

The issue is simple: Why did Stafford go to the Lions?

The Lions have issues at almost every position except a few. Besides having the worst defense in the league, they couldn't score points because of the horrific offensive line, which is why Culpepper couldn't throw the ball.

Stafford does have a top arm, and coming into mini-camp, he will look to learn the system as quickly as possible. Yet, if the Lions want to finally show some sense within the organization, you need to have Culpepper take the hits once again; this time for the sake of the franchise.

Stafford does need a near-perfect development from the Lions, which is why a whole season, maybe even two years of not starting could do good for Matt.

In the end, however, I do not see this panning this out.

Yes, Stafford does have the arm strength and the experience on college level.

He is still going to be a minor project, and unfortunately, I don't believe he will be able to be successful in Detroit. The ghost of Matt Millen is still within the front office, who from my perspective hasn't changed a bit.

I just don't see an answer in Detroit as to why Matthew Stafford will be the savior under these conditions.

Sorry, Lions fans.

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