WATCH: Matthew Stafford’s emotional farewell video to Detroit Lions and the city

Detroit Free Press

Detroit Lions fans have had a few weeks to get over the departure of quarterback Matthew Stafford in a trade with the Los Angeles Rams.

The deal (bringing QB Jared Goff and picks to Detroit) was agreed to in late January, just after the team hired Brad Holmes as GM and Dan Campbell as head coach. But it couldn’t go through until the first day of the NFL’s new league year on Wednesday.

MITCH ALBOM: Matthew Stafford’s last Detroit Lions interview: How hard it was for him to say goodbye

CARLOS MONARREZ: After watching Stafford for 12 years, I never saw his desire for greatness

THE FUTURE IN DETROIT: Why Stafford trade could be Lions’ version of famed Herschel Walker deal

That means it was also time for one more tug at the Honolulu Blue heartstrings, as the team Wednesday night released a nine-minute (of course) farewell video from Stafford.

WATCH IT HERE:

The video opens with Stafford in a dark studio, narrating the letter of his farewell. It chronicles his early years “as a long-haired Texas kid from the University of Georgia.”

It continues to blend images of the city and Stafford’s time on and off the field, with the quarterback noting of the city, “I guess it’s where I grew up.”

About halfway through, in the midst of several celebratory Lions moments, Stafford intones, “I want you to know how much I care. How much I will always care.”

He then thanks a bevy of coaches and teammates, from Calvin Johnson to Glover Quin. It’s a fitting remembrance of the team’s climb from an 0-16 season the year before Stafford’s arrival to … well, at least a team that hasn’t gone 0-16 since. Along the way, Stafford cemented his status as the best quarterback in franchise history, with 45,109 passing yards, 282 touchdowns and three playoff appearances.

Finally, Stafford’s missive ends with a message to all the fans who saw him through 165 starts with the Lions:

“Thank you for everything, Detroit. Sincerely, No. 9.”

Contact Ryan Ford at rford@freepress.com. Follow him on Twitter @theford.

Articles You May Like

Ask POD: Detroit Lions Q&A on the Spotify Greenroom app
Notes: Calvin Johnson wanted to play elsewhere before retiring
Open thread: Which Lions player could be the biggest surprise in 2021?
Open thread: Which Lions rookie DT will play more snaps in 2021
Detroit Lions sign draft picks Levi Onwuzurike, Derrick Barnes, Amon-Ra St. Brown

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *