Matthew Stafford Answers Fan Questions

Posted Jun 14, 2010

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Q: Hey Matt, I've noticed that you seem to be a big Detroit Tigers fan (saw a Tigers game on TV and you talked to the commentators about baseball). I think that's great that you've embraced the other pro sports teams in Detroit. If by chance you played baseball instead of football, what position would you play? My guess is a closer. (Mitch - Ann Arbor, Michigan)

Stafford: “I played shortstop all through high school, so I’d probably say shortstop. But I did close, too, so one of the two. I played more at shortstop than I closed.”

Q: How efficient is the offense going to be this coming year? (Jesus Lozano – Edinburg, Texas)

Stafford: “Hopefully a lot more than it was last year. We’ve got a lot more weapons and we did a lot of good things in the offseason. It gave myself and Coach Linehan a lot more places to get the ball.”

Q: Were you disappointed in your performance last season as a whole and what kind of improvements can we look forward to this year? (Jim Cone – St. Cloud, Minnesota)

Stafford: “As a competitor, yeah. Obviously I hate losing; I hate throwing interceptions and all that. I knew it was going to be a learning process – I had to have that attitude to come in with it. I’ve already started watching film from last year and trying to learn from my mistakes even more. It’s always a whole lot better to look at it the year after rather than at the end of the season. It’s a lot easier to learn, I guess. I’m just trying to flip my touchdown-to-interceptions and make it at least 2-to-1, something like that. But the big part is getting wins – being able to manage the game enough to win.”

Q: How's the body holding up this offseason?  We've been really concerned about you hitting camp at 100-percent. (Todd Derenzy – Central Lake, Michigan)

Stafford: “It’s getting a lot better. Feeling a lot better.”

Q: What has been the biggest difference in playing at the college level and the pro level?

Stafford: “I think one of the biggest differences, especially coming in as a rookie, having a 20-game season – that’s a big difference. That and just the complexity of defenses. I played in the SEC, which is probably the most complex conference when it comes to seeing defenses, but it’s still even that much more in the pros.”

Q: As a player going into his second year in the system, how have you and Calvin Johnson developed your chemistry?

Stafford: “Just getting out there and playing. Just taking reps together this offseason – that’s how you build chemistry. You can talk about it all you want and look at it on film, but you’ve got to go out there and do it to really feel comfortable with it. I think we’re getting there.”

Q: What is your favorite thing about throwing to Calvin Johnson?

Stafford: “He’s where he's supposed to be and obviously the target I have to throw to is bigger than anybody in the NFL.”

Q: What do you like best about your job? (Doug Chivers – Woodstock, Ontario)

Stafford: “That I can wear shorts and a T-shirt to work every day if I want. Except when it gets cold – then I’ve got to wear sweats. But I don’t have to dress up, which is nice.”

Q: I sometimes daydream about the Lions winning a Super Bowl. Do you ever picture yourself leading the Lions to a Super Bowl victory and if so, do you run in the winning score, hand it off, or throw it? (Rick – Sterling Heights, Michigan)

Stafford: “Of course. I don’t think any of us would play this game if we don’t dream about that. That’s what we play for. That’s the only reason you really play is to try and win a Super Bowl. And I’d throw it in.”

Q: I've read a lot about how much sharper you are this offseason which is great to hear.  What do you feel you need to work on most at this point during the offseason? (Eric Bremerton – Washington)

Stafford: “I think it’s still getting to know some of these new guys. We’ve got Nate Burleson in here, Jahvid Best, we have Scheffler – some guys that are really going to help us out during the season that I don’t have a ton of experience with, but I’m still getting more than I would have even last year because I’m at least taking every rep with them. I think that’s the biggest process for me right now, getting to know those guys and having all those guys healthy on the field at the same time – it’s going to be a big advantage for us.”

Q: Mr. Stafford - who would you say your biggest inspiration is, and what advice do you have for those of us who want to be NFL players one day? (Koonin – Marietta, Georgia)

Stafford: “I think the guy I looked up to the most in the football realm would be John Elway. Him and Troy Aikman were the two that I watched growing up. Advice would just be to work hard. That’s all you can do and if it’s meant to be, it’s meant to be. It’s the toughest sport in professional sports, I think, to make it just because of the injury factor and all that. Just have fun playing the game because I’m in the NFL and have a ton of expectations and all that, but I still have a ton of fun playing the game. You get a chance to play the game and if you’re lucky enough to do it, embrace it.”

Q: How did it feel to come back in and throw the game winning TD vs. the Browns? (Mike)

Stafford: “It was awesome. Definitely a moment in my career I’m sure I’ll never forget. I’m just glad I completed it because, had I not completed it, it probably wouldn’t have been as good a story.”

Q: What do you think of your new teammate Ndamukong Suh? (Ali – Lincoln, Nebraska)

Stafford: “I like him. I think he’s a good guy. He’s obviously extremely talented and he’s been learning our system and I think once he learns it and gets it down pat he’s going to be able to turn off the thinking switch and just go out and play. That’s when we’re really going to see what he can do.”

Q: What is your favorite ice cream flavor? (Colin W. – Royal Oak, Michigan)

Stafford: “I’d probably say chocolate chip cookie dough.”

Q: Hey Matt, what do you feel is the most valuable lesson you have learned during your rookie year? How will you use that going into your second season? (Ricki – From Detroit, now living in New York)

Stafford: “I think one of the things I learned the most is that turnovers can kill you. That’s kind of what everybody expects you to say, but it’s true. You can’t turn the ball over a bunch and expect to win games, so hopefully I can take that into year two – be a little bit more careful with the ball.”

Q: What is your favorite AXE product? Mine is AXE rise cologne. I am only 11 but I have been a fan for a long time and I love going to Ford Field with family. My 8 year old sister wants to meet you and wants to know your favorite color – her's is blue! All the best this season – you rock!!!!! (Tate Wells, Ontario)

Stafford: “(Axe Dual) 2 In 1 shampoo and conditioner. My favorite color is blue.”

Q: What is your favorite thing to do besides play football in the summer?

Stafford: “Play golf.”