Detroit Lions
Remembering the Detroit version of Stafford after Super Bowl LVI
Detroit Lions

Remembering the Detroit version of Stafford after Super Bowl LVI

Updated Jan. 17, 2023 11:45 a.m. ET

Matthew Stafford is finally a Super Bowl champion. 

In his first season with the Los Angeles Rams, the 34-year-old QB led his new team to Super Bowl LVI and secured the Lombardi Trophy with a narrow victory over the Cincinnati Bengals.

It's been a long time coming for the 13-year NFL veteran. After being chosen No. 1 overall by the Detroit Lions' in the 2009 draft, Stafford went 74-90-1 in 12 seasons under three different head coaches — Jim Schwartz, Jim Caldwell and Matt Patricia. He led Detroit to just four winning seasons (2011, 2014, 2016, 2017) and three trips to the NFC playoffs (2011, 2014, 2016). 

The Lions' 2011 season, in which Stafford had a monster 5,038-yard, 41-touchdown campaign, was the first time Detroit had been to playoffs since 1999.


The Lions traded him to the Rams in March 2021 after going 8-15-1 as the starter in his last two seasons.

Now, he has just as many Super Bowl rings as Aaron Rodgers, Patrick Mahomes and Russell Wilson.

Stafford set a slew of records for the Lions organization during his time in Detroit. He is the Lions' all-time leader in passing yards (45,109), passing touchdowns (282), attempts (6,224) and completions (3,898). He also leads the franchise in QB wins (74), fourth-quarter comebacks (31) and game-winning drives (38).

In addition, Stafford is the Lions' all-time leader in interceptions thrown (144) and sacks taken (385).

He holds eight of the top 10 passing yardage seasons and seven of the top 10 passing TD seasons in Lions history. Stafford is responsible for guiding Detroit to half (two of four) of its 10-plus win seasons, and in 2015, he became the first Lions QB to complete 60-plus percent of his passes for every game in a season.

He is also the only Lions QB with more than five game-winning drives and fourth-quarter comebacks in a single season. 

Although Stafford is no longer a Lion, the two teams are still intertwined heading into the upcoming season.

The Lions' extra first-round draft pick, coming from L.A. via the Stafford trade, hung on the Super Bowl result. Since the Rams pulled off the victory, the Lions now have the final pick of the first round and three selections in the first 34 spots.


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