Stafford, Lions Beginning To Talk Extension; QB Would ‘Love To Be Here Long Term’

By: Will Burchfield
@burchie_kid

Matthew Stafford said on Tuesday that he has talked to Lions GM Bob Quinn and head coach Jim Caldwell about a contract extension but hasn’t set a deadline on getting a deal done.

Stafford’s current contract, a three-year, $53 million extension he signed in 2013, expires at the end of the 2017 season.

“I have no preference,” Stafford said, when asked if he would like to finalize a new deal prior to the start of the upcoming season. “Haven’t set a firm timeline on anything.”

He did say, however, that he would like to be in Detroit long term.

“I would love to. I’ve had a really good time playing here, would like to be here long term, but that’s yet to be seen,” said Stafford.

Last month, Quinn said that inking Stafford to an extension was a “priority” for the Lions. The two sides hadn’t had any discussions up to that point, so the fact that they’ve begun to broach the topic is a positive sign.

“Their people are talking to my people and we’ll see what happens,” Stafford said on Tuesday. “I guess that’s how that goes, right? I’m not involved as much as you guys would like me to be.”

Stafford, a new father to twin girls, is otherwise trying to keep things normal.

“I’m just here working out. If that stuff’s gonna get done, it’s gonna get done; if it’s not, it’s not. I can’t really worry about it too much. That’s why I have an agent, that’s why you hire one and let him deal with that kind of stuff. For me, it’s just going about my business. I’m under contract for another year and I’ll be here trying to lead this team to be as good as we can be,” he said.

Stafford is coming off one of the best seasons of his career and stands to sign a record-breaking deal with his next contract.

“Matthew Stafford’s in a position where if he chooses to push it, he can get more than anyone else ever has,” Mike Florio, of Pro Football Talk, said last month. “Frankly, given what the salary cap has done the last four years, there should be a quarterback right now making $30 million a year and there isn’t even one making $25 million.”

Andrew Luck is currently the NFL’s highest-paid player with an average annual salary of $24.5 million.

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