Though Detroit and Green Bay have had several exciting contests since Matthew Stafford joined the Lions in 2009, the Packers have almost always prevailed, especially when the stakes were high.
As we await the second Packers/Lions clash of the year, here’s a summary of how Stafford performed in the games he’s played in against Green Bay (* = Matt Flynn was GB’s QB):
|2016 (1)||28||41||385||3||1||112.3||34-27 L|
|2015 (1)||24||38||242||2||1||87.8||18-16 W|
|2015 (2)||23||35||220||2||0||102.1||27-23 L|
|2014 (1)||22||34||246||0||2||61.6||19-7 W|
|2014 (2)||20||41||217||3||0||89.2||30-20 L|
|2013 (1)||25||40||262||1||0||89.8||22-9 L|
|2012 (1)||17||39||266||1||2||54.0||24-20 L|
|2012 (2)||27||45||264||1||1||74.7||27-20 L*|
|2011 (1)||32||45||276||1||3||66.5||27-15 L|
|2011 (2)||36||59||520||5||2||103.8||45-21 L*|
|2009 (2)||20||43||213||1||4||30.5||34-12 L|
Stafford’s best performance against Green Bay was in the teams’ first contest this year. Stafford had his best passer rating and threw for big yardage. But he failed to finish his final drive, when Damarious Randall knocked away his short fourth down pass at the goal line.
The second meeting of the teams in 2015, on December 13, featured the Aaron Rodgers-to-Richard Rodgers Hail Mary finish. Stafford had built up a 17-0 first half lead, but Detroit was limited to two field goals in the second half. The Packers, meanwhile, scored all of their 27 points in the game’s final 21 minutes.
In 2014, Green Bay faced a similar situation to that of this year: a final game of the regular season against Detroit, with the two teams sporting identical records (11-4). Things looked bleak when Rodgers was carted away in the second quarter with a left calf injury. To the cheers of the fans, however, he hobbled back onto the field midway through the third quarter. Though immobile, Rodgers proceeded to lead the Packers on two touchdown drives, sparking the 30-20 comeback win. Stafford completed fewer than half his passes (20-41), and only averaged 5.3 yards per attempt in the game.
Stafford has been a prodigious thrower against Green Bay, averaging 41.8 passes per game. His completion percentage in these contests, however, is only 59.6. His yardage has also typically been very modest for the number of throws he has attempted. His touchdown to interception ratio is a very poor 20-to-16.
Stafford’s past stats bode well for the Packers. However, the victory margins have been shrinking.
Perhaps the most telling of Stafford’s numbers, though, are those of his last two games. Against the Bears on December 11, Stafford dislocated the joint and tore tendons in the middle finger of his throwing hand. Since that time, and while wearing a splint and a special glove, Stafford’s production has been:
Mortgage the house if need be, but put your money on Green Bay this Sunday.
If the Packers are as overconfident as their fans this week they will get thrashed.
Yep, this game has danger written all over it. If Joe Thomas is hurt, it may be even more dangerous. This will be the third game where Stafford will be playing with the injured finger. he may be close to adapting to the difference.
Does Stafford have an ability to lead comebacks, Yes. To me the outcome of the game has more to do with the Packer offense and Rodgers than Stafford. If you look at the Packer loses, or the Hail Mary game the Packer offense really struggled during large portions of, or the entire game.
I still do trust the Packer defensive backs, but I do think the Detroit offensive line struggles. The Packers front 7 should get pressure on Stafford. Stafford can make mistakes and make erratic throws when under pressure. One thing about Stafford this year is he kind of moves in the pocket like Russell from Seattle. The defense needs to contain Stafford. The Packers should be good at that after playing Russell. I kind of liked the way the Giants and Bears rushed Stafford. They would bring up 6 or 7 to the line. The lion offensive line did not handle the pressure, or look of pressure well and neither did Stafford. GO PACK!
The Lions are 9-6 with a minus 5 point differential.
They are 21st in scoring offense.
They have been behind in the 4th quarter 14 of 15 games. winning 8 of them, by the skin of their teeth.
Out of all the teams the Lions beat, none of them are playoff teams with the exception of possibly the Redskins, who will get bounced out immediately, just like last season, even if they do make it.
The Lions are on a 2 game losing streak (those 2 teams in the playoffs). The Packers are on a 5 game win streak.
The Lions don’t have Aaron Rodgers.
The Lions haven’t won the NFC Central/North since 1993.
I don’t see that changing Sunday night.
What really doesn’t get a lot of play in the national press or in Green Bay, but has been written about a lot in the Detroit Press, is that since Stafford’s hand injury, his QB rating has been around 66 from a previous 101. I think this is what makes the difference in the game.
Travis Swanson has been out, he played in the first game, which means the Lions are weak in the center of their offensive line. Mike Daniels may be able to take advantage of this.