Now that he’s no longer a member of the Detroit Lions, QB Matthew Stafford is opening up about some of his experiences with the team in 2020. One of the highlights was him finally addressing his relationship with former head coach Matt Patricia.
In an interview with Mitch Albom of the Detroit Free Press, Stafford made it clear he had “a good relationship” with Patricia. He said that the two grew into that relationship over time and he has a lot of respect for him.
“He and I had a good relationship, no matter what anybody wants to say,” Stafford said. “I could go into his office and talk to him, he could get me on the phone whenever he needed to, but I think we both grew in that relationship. I have a lot of respect for him and who he is, as a football coach and an unbelievable mind.”
Patricia was hired in 2018 but didn’t even make it three full seasons with the team. He was fired in late-November after a 4-7 start and a 13-29-1 record overall.
It’s been speculated for a long time that Matthew Stafford and Matt Patricia had a rocky relationship. But their inability to win together may have had more to do with coaching and roster management than any interpersonal issues they may have had.
The Lions have since replaced Patricia and general manager Bob Quinn with Dan Campbell and Brad Holmes respectively. Jared Goff was acquired in the Stafford trade and is the presumptive starter until further notice.
Patricia landed on his feet, re-upping with his longtime mentor Bill Belichick on the Patriots.
There have been worse QB-head coach duos in the NFL than Stafford and Patricia. But Lions fans can’t be at all pleased with how things went.