Matthew Stafford 2nd NFC OPOTW part of LA Rams perks

Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports /

When veteran quarterback Matthew Stafford asked the Detroit Lions to be traded, he was a bit particular about which team he would be willing to go to. As many as a dozen teams made offers to the Lions, but it was the LA Rams offer of a starting playoff-caliber quarterback, a 2021 fourth-round pick, a 2022 first-round pick, and a 2023 first-round pick, that eventually succeeded.

The LA Rams had their quarterback, and the Detroit Lions had plenty of building blocks to construct a new younger roster.

It wasn’t until September 2021 that NFL Network’s Ian Rapaport reported that Stafford had a far more active hand in determining which team he would be willing to accept as his destination. In his article, he described how LA Rams head coach Sean McVay happened to meet Matthew Stafford in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. They had dinner, spent time chatting in the hot tub. When they returned to their respective teams, Stafford’s heart was set on playing for the LA Rams.  Sean McVay’s heart was set on trading for Stafford.

Make it so, Matthew Stafford

It felt like a good fit for both coach and player. It sounded like a good fit for both coach and player. But did either realize just how good of a fit this would become? Well, let’s frame it this way. In his previous twelve NFL seasons, Matthew Stafford earned the honor of NFC Offensive Player of the Week just one time. He’s just earned the distinction for the second time in just three weeks of the 2021 NFL season.

So is this some sort of predestined award because Stafford was such a huge trade in the offseason? Not exactly.  You see, Stafford fits the LA Rams offense designed by head coach Sean McVay to a tee.

Stafford has had two off-the-chart performances, with each game getting plenty of notice.

It’s not often that a free agent joins a team and the combination surpasses the optimism of the potential. Right now, Stafford is raising the bar of expectations even as he is still familiarizing himself with the offense.

Is there reason to believe that he can do even better going forward? Yes, there is. The LA Rams have involved about 50-60 percent of their offensive weapons so far. The Rams have not exploited Tyler Higbee much, not gotten Robert Woods on track yet. In terms of the young offensive targets, the Rams have kept Tutu Atwell, Ben Skowronek, and Jacob Harris practically on the shelf so far.

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A song by the late 1970’s rock star Meat Loaf was entitled Two out of Three Ain’t Bad. But for LA Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford, two out of three is flipping fantastic.