As the options to fill the No. 2 spot on the depth chart quickly thinned, the Detroit Lions have re-signed Nate Sudfeld.
After last season ended, via SI.com, here’s what Detroit Lions general manager Brad Holmes said about the backup quarterback situation.
Going into this past year, yeah, we went down to the umpteenth hour trying to figure out what we were gonna do at number two,” I’ve let it be known internally that we’re not gonna be in that position again heading into this year, so we have to get that settled. I thought Nate Sudfeld did a nice job with us, so we’ll figure that out. But, I am gonna make it a point of emphasis and make sure that, being that we’re finally in a position to address that quarterback room behind Jared, we have been in that position in the past. But, we’re gonna make that a point of emphasis this year.”
As viable options to upgrade the backup quarterback situation have thinned, on Friday the Lions announced they have re-signed Nate Sudfeld. So much for “a point of emphasis”, and the inherent idea a change/upgrade was coming behind Jared Goff.
Re-signing Nate Sudfeld should not take Lions out of the veteran backup market
Sudfeld signed with the Lions last offseason, and he played nine snaps over two games in mopup duty as Goff started every game. Re-signing him adds fuel to the idea the Lions will draft a quarterback in April, but the move is not (or should not be) the end of the search for a veteran backup option.
That’s not meant as a knock on Sudfeld. But the reality is he has not thrown a regular season pass since 2020 with the Philadelphia Eagles, and he has 37 pass attempts on his career resume at 29 years old.
For a Lions’ team with legit playoff aspirations next season, a more credible option should Goff miss time is necessary. We saw what that looked like in 2021 with Tim Boyle. Sudfeld was a lateral move when he was signed late last preseason, and he’s still a lateral move now.
Holmes acknowledged Sudfeld was not necessarily an ideal solution behind Goff, then he watched the backup quarterback market move so much he has been left to put his tail between his legs and just re-sign last year’s No. 2.
Yes it’s “only the backup quarterback.” But it could become a critically important spot on the roster, and the Lions are left to pick up scraps until the possibility they take a young quarterback in the draft.