It’s officially Game Week for the Detroit Lions as they’re gearing up for their Week 1 matchup against their division rival Chicago Bears at Ford Field this Sunday.
After head coach Matt Patricia met virtually with media members, quarterback Matthew Stafford took to the virtual podium to answer questions – and naturally, the signing of running back Adrian Peterson was one of the first topics he was asked about.
“I’m glad to see him in our uniform,” Stafford said.
Of course, Stafford and the Lions saw plenty of Peterson when he was a member of the rival Minnesota Vikings. Needless to say, Stafford is happy to have him on Detroit’s side this time around.
“Saw him too many years in the purple and gold, and he was doing his thing against us,” he said with a smile. “I know he’s excited to be here and we’re excited to have him.”
“He’s one of the greats at the position,” he continued. “He raises the bar for a lot of people to go out there and watch the way he works at his age and what he’s accomplished.”
Stafford was then asked if he’s going to be taking the time to appreciate that he’s had the opportunity to be in team huddles with the likes of Calvin Johnson and now Adrian Peterson:
“I’ll probably think about that when I’m done,” Stafford said. “In the moment I’ll just enjoy watching him run when he gets the ball. I’m just excited that he’s in our uniform – I watched him run from the opposite sideline too many times.”
As far as getting the season underway without the luxury of the preseason, Stafford isn’t too concerned.
“I’m excited to get back out there with my teammates….there might be a little more guesswork involved (with no preseason) but most teams are pretty guarded in the preseason anyways, so there might be a little more unknown, but we have to go out there and play.”
Stafford caught the attention of the sports community when former teammate Nate Burleson revealed that Stafford had texted him with the bold prediction that he’s going for this year’s MVP award – but he declined to give any more details about it, and instead chose to remain humble.
“I’m not going to share the backstory,” he responded. “What I text Nate I guess is for y’all a little bit but not all of it. I’m just excited to pay, I have talented playmakers around me…it’s on us as an offense.”
“I just go out there and play and try to win games, and help my teammates win games.”
With the way last season ended for the Lions, is there going to be any added motivation for Stafford, who had his season cut short due to his lingering back injury?
“I think we’re motivated because we have the opportunity,” he said. “We know what’s in front of us – last year stung for me to not be out there, but this is a new year, new group of guys, we’re excited about it, but we have to go out there and prove it.”
Stafford and the Lions take the Field against the Bears this Sunday at 1:00 PM EST.