DETROIT (97.1 The Ticket) NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell wasn’t alone when he came to the Lions open practice Thursday — he was joined by the legendary John Madden.

Madden was asked by the team’s play-by-play man Dan Miller what it means for the Lions to have a quarterback like Matthew Stafford. Madden told Miller: “It means you are pretty doggone happy, you’re not fighting an uphill battle all the time.”

Madden added: “If you have one (QB) of them, a real comfort factor there, and conversely if you don’t have one you’re fighting an uphill battle every week … You’re trying to fool them, you’re trying to have a strong defense, get turnovers,  playing special teams and that’s tough football to coach, it’s hard to play and for the fans it’s kind of boring.

“Now when you have the quarterback and the receiver, now it’s a different ballgame. You don’t know which play is going to be the big one, but it could be any play.”

Madden also talked about how a team like the Lions could leap to the next level in the playoffs and advance beyond that, saying, “It’s being good at the right time. You watch the Olympics, you know, and in four years they get ready and now they get their moment. It has to be done right at that moment.

“Green Bay was great last year, then they couldn’t get it going in the playoffs. The Giants on the other hand, they weren’t great during the regular season, but they got it going at the right time and won the Super Bowl.”

The key is hitting the peak at the perfect time in the season, Madden said.

“If you look at everyone who does well in the playoffs, they’re peaking.”


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