Sherman premature to reject LA Rams QB Matthew Stafford HOF

Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /
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LA Rams News Matthew Stafford
Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /

Nature vs. Nurture

Let’s break down Sherman’s protests into three categories: Popularity, performance, and opportunity. After all, he kind of slings a lot of unrelated shade on Matthew Stafford, with varying degrees of validity and relevance. Of course, if you are trying to stir the pot, a very successful tactic is to create controversy by mixing some facts with a lot of passionate opinions.

I: Popularity

In any Pro Bowl or All-Pro selection, there is an inevitable bias embedded in the selection process. Invariably, any name that ended with Manning, Rodgers, or Brady was taking the slots for quarterbacks.

The problem with relying on popularity to determine who is a Pro Bowl quarterback is the fact that the media promotes certain players at the expense of others.

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Riddle me this?

NFL media loves to build up young players, and then tear them back down. The problem is that those gyrations distract readers from what is really happening in the NFL. Veteran Matthew Stafford just went 16-5 in his first season with his new team, the LA Rams. He never really had a supportive ground game this year. And as far as his receivers? He was throwing to new faces throughout the year.

In spite of all those factors, he continued to lead the Rams to victories. Did other quarterbacks really accomplish as much?  Let’s look at the 2021 Pro Bowl selections. For example, in 2021, we have the following comparison:

QB            Accuracy   Yards    TDs   INTs
Stafford    67.2%        4,886    41     17
Murray      69.2%        3,787    24     10

And yet, Kyler Murray was the Pro Bowl selection. Yes, Murray missed three games. But his backup, Colt McCoy, arguably played as good if not better than Murray.  And keep in mind that Stafford was pulled from the final quarter of two games because the game was a blowout. So Sherman’s assistance upon using Pro Bowls, and even All-Pros, as the basis for a Hall of Fame criteria is very suspect.