Peterson: A new game — QB search

There’s a new game going on in the National Football League these days:

It’s called Quarterback Search and it’s hot in practically every league city.

It’s not that quarterbacks haven’t always commanded their share of attention. Names like Johnny Unitas, Bart Starr, Joe Namath and Joe Montana are still household names.

But with the large number of big-time QBs retiring (notably Drew Brees and Philip Rivers) and an even large number apparently ready to get a pink slip, the rush is on to find a signal caller who can get you to the promised land, much like Tom Brady did in Tampa Bay.

And one of the hottest names is former — or soon to be — Detroit Lions leader Matthew Stafford.

Even as Stafford tried his best in Motown with often incompetent teammates and coaches, he couldn’t get ever find the key to breaking the Bobby Layne Curse.

But he showed enough grit and talent to impress many teams, who believe that a mere change of scenery could be successful for the Georgia product.

Among the suitors who will almost certainly come calling are the Indianapolis Colts and San Francisco 49ers.

The Colts are without a starter (with Rivers gone) completely. The 49ers are fed up with often-injured Jimmy Garapolo and are ready to move on.

Personally, I believe that Indy is the best place for Stafford.

The Colts have a quality offensive line and some fine offensive weapons. They also have a stellar coaching staff, unlike the ones that were present in Detroit.

The 49ers have many of the same attributes, but their salary cap situation isn’t as sound as the Colts.

Should the Lions and Stafford agree, they have to make sure the compensation is equal to the loss.

That means at least one high first round pick and maybe even a strong defensive player. That’s an area new Detroit coach Dan Campbell must shore up immediately if he is to bring this struggling franchise back to speed.

Who will be the new quarterback is Motown is the next question.

There are a couple of promising QBs (Alabama’s Mac Jones could be a sleeper) in the draft and that could be the way the team goes.

But whoever gets the job must be beyond adequate. Maybe the Lions could even go after the Bears Mitchell Trubisky, who raised his stock just by playing the Lions.

That would eliminate a loss or two per season.


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