Projecting Matthew Stafford's career


ESPN.com drew me into its Hot Button feature this week, asking which quarterback taken in the first round of the 2009 draft will have the best career.

Analysts Marcellus Wiley and Herm Edwards both chose Josh Freeman of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the video below, but agreement wasn't an option for the written portion.

Senior writer John Clayton took Freeman, and I did my best to stand up for Matthew Stafford of the Detroit Lions. I realize there is no comparing either of Stafford's first two seasons with Freeman's 2010 performance, but I also don't think the second year of a quarterback's career is make-or-break.

In essence, I argued that Stafford's biggest shortcoming has been health, an obstacle every NFL player faces, and that he showed us some substantial improvement in some key categories during his brief time on the field in 2010.