Detroit Lions: Matthew Stafford and Jim Bob Cooter Make a Dynamic Duo


Detroit Lions QB Matthew Stafford and offensive coordinator Jim Bob Cooter’s success together may make them a package deal for the next GM to consider.

Their sample size together is small (7 games, not including the Chiefs game), but the positive results Jim Bob Cooter and Matthew Stafford have achieved is undeniable. Here are just some of the numbers the Detroit Lions have put up in the last seven games with this duo in charge:

They have won five 0f seven games (and would have six victories, if not for the Green Bay Hail Mary debacle). They have run for over 100 yards in five of those seven games. Stafford has thrown for 16 touchdowns and only two interceptions. He’s completed 69.6% of his passes, and his average quarterback rating during those seven games is an impressive 109.5.

Cooter has helped stabilize, and maximize, the strengths of the offensive line. He has the running game moving toward respectability, and he has Stafford showing supporters (and critics) that the Lions already have a capable franchise quarterback.

More from Detroit Lions

The big question now is: how long will the Lions keep this successful duo together?

Stafford has seemingly solidified his spot on the roster (next season, and moving forward) with his stellar play the second half of this year.

But what’s much less certain is whether the Lions will reap the rewards of Cooter’s talents moving forward. Stafford has already pledged his support of Cooter and expressed his hopes to have him back, but the Lions face an offseason of transition and change.

With a new general manager (likely) to be hired in place of interim general manager Sheldon White, it’s difficult to say what will happen to Cooter. His future with the Lions could ultimately be tied to head coach Jim Caldwell. If Caldwell is retained, Cooter will almost certainly return as well.

If Caldwell is fired, however, Cooter is much less likely to return. A new head coach is most likely going to want to hire an offensive coordinator of his own choosing.

It’s been mentioned that one promising head coaching candidate – Adam Gase – has past ties to Cooter, and thus it is possible Cooter could be retained if Gase is hired as the next Lions coach.

But the Lions should not select a new coach, based on his ties to their current coordinators. Nor should they limit themselves to bunching Cooter’s future with Caldwell’s. If any two people should be retained (together) on the Lions, moving forward, it should be Cooter and Stafford.

If Lions ownership really like what they’ve seen from Stafford the past seven games, they should make sure Cooter is the offensive coordinator next year (regardless of who the next GM is, and regardless of who’s coaching).

A stable quarterback situation is integral to Detroit’s (or any team’s) success. While a different offensive coordinator could bring more success to Stafford (and the Lions), they could also make things worse. Which means, without Cooter, the Lions offense could stink next year.

More from Detroit Jock City

With Stafford and Cooter working together, the Detroit Lions have a good thing going already. They should do everything they can to keep it that way.