If you have ever had the opportunity to listen in to a press conference with Detroit Lions beat writers and either a player or coach, you have likely walked away baffled at some of the questions that are asked by professional journalists. If you have not yet had the opportunity to listen in, I have some advice for you. DON’T EVER LISTEN IN!
Now, don’t get me wrong, there are some amazing beat writers who cover the Lions, such as Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press and Nick Baumgardner and Chris Burke of The Athletic. Those guys are true pros at what they do and they seem to have good professional relationships with the players and coaches they are interviewing. Because of that, they can often get certain players and coaches to open up more than others can.
As we all know, Lions QB Matthew Stafford is a very private person. He does not have social media accounts, he tries his best to fly under the radar (despite being one the biggest stars in Detroit sports), and it is very apparent that he would rather get kicked in the (insert word of your choice) than stand at a podium and answer what are often questions that have no relevance to football from media members.
On Wednesday, Stafford was speaking to the media about the Lions upcoming game with the Atlanta Falcons when some media members decided that they would ask a bunch of questions about Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw and Falcons QB Matt Ryan, rather than focusing on the upcoming game.
Stafford answered all of the questions thrown his way until one writer asked about whether or not Stafford had given Ryan advice about dealing with his current situation in Atlanta. In case you did not know, the Falcons recently fired head coach Dan Quinn.
As soon as the question was asked, I wondered to myself, “why would Stafford give advice to Ryan about dealing with a midseason coaching change?” After all, Stafford has never been in that exact situation. Sure, he had dealt with coaching changes, but so has Ryan.
Anyways, Stafford’s response to the question was perfect as he basically told the reporter “it’s none of your damn business” in the most Matthew Stafford way possible.
“Anything and everything kind of comes up,” Stafford said. “We’re always really checking in on family, making sure everybody’s doing good. Part of having a friendship is being able to have conversations and not have to tell everybody in the media what we talk about, so I’ll do that. But he’s a good buddy.”
Props to Stafford for being nice.