The Detroit Lions have named Matthew Stafford for the 2009 season, going as far as to say that he’ll keep playing–regardless of performance–unless he gets injured. Depending on who you ask, Stafford either played well enough in preseason to close whatever gap there was between him and the wiley vagabond Daunte Culpepper, or coach Jim Schwartz’s “competition” for the job was a sham. Culpepper, whose tiny hands will be sitting on the bench yet again, has gone out of his way to show support for Stafford, releasing a statement through the team:
“Now that the debate is over and the decision has been made regarding the starting quarterback in Detroit, I would like to make the following statement today so that tomorrow I can put all of my energy into helping our team prepare for our opponent,” Culpepper said in the statement.
Culpepper said he restructured the year left on his contract because he would have a chance to vie for the starting job and said he was “excited” when the Lions drafted Stafford No. 1. via.
Excited? So excited that he probably threw a floor lamp through his living room window. Credit to Culpepper for playing the hand he was dealt, and for recognizing the Black Quarterback/White Quarterback dynamic that can divide a locker room when teammates tend to fall in line behind one guy. But Stafford can’t do any worse than Dan Orlovsky’s leisurely stroll out of the end zone last season; and with that kind of baseline, the Lions could start a ’58 Edsel under center and nobody would care. Or notice, really.