Should Lions extend Drew Stanton's contract?
ALLEN PARK --- When a team has lost five straight, not to mention just four wins over the last two seasons, bright spots are tough to find.
Well, the Detroit Lions found one on Sunday.
Drew Stanton started his first game of the season and second of his career. He did not lead the team to a win, but he played well.
“First of all this was a team that was giving up 14 points a game and he was able to put 20 on the board. We didn’t put enough on the board, there’s some plays we left out on the field. He made a couple plays with his feet. Scored a touchdown one, threw another touchdown pass,’’ coach Jim Schwartz said. “There was no turnovers, that was a big point we had made. That was a team that was getting a lot of turnovers.’’
Stanton showed great improvement over his only other start which was Dec. 27, 2009, in San Francisco. In that loss he threw three interceptions, lost a fumble and was benched in favor of Daunte Culpepper.
This is what 11 more months under the tutelage of offensive coordinator Scott Linehan will do to a 26-year-old quarterback. Also he works closely day to day with Matthew Stafford and Shaun Hill.
Even though it seems like Stanton has been around a while this is his fourth season. But in football terms it’s just his second due to injuries in his first two seasons that kept him out of action.
Even though he’s a local guy -- Farmington Hills Harrison and Michigan State -- fans didn’t seem to have too much faith in him. Perhaps it was that awful outing last year.
What fans think though is quite different from what the Lions coaching staff sees on a daily basis. Linehan and Schwartz both praised Stanton last season. They wouldn’t keep him around if they didn’t see something in him.
This is Stanton’s final year of his contract.
No one really knows if he’s in the Lions’ future plans. But if he plays well again on Sunday (it’s likely he’ll start against the Packers) perhaps they will decide he’s too valuable to let go.
Unlike many NFL teams, the Lions don’t have to worry about developing a youngster. After all Matthew Stafford is just 22. (Follow me on Twitter @PaulaPasche.)