You might not get anyone with the Detroit Lions to acknowledge this right now, but the wide-ranging belief in the organization is quarterback Matthew Stafford(notes) might be much better than anyone had dared to hope.
The truth is, the kid is wowing everybody. While the Lions knew Stafford had all the physical abilities, the one thing they couldn't measure was how he would adapt to his surroundings. Not only in terms of how he would bond with his teammates, but how he would carry himself in meetings and in the locker room.
Either Stafford has a great attitude, a great arm and is on the right track, or Tom Kowalski is making an early attempt to position himself as the John Madden to Stafford's eventual Brett Favre(notes).
I kid, I kid. It's obviously the former. Given what the people of Detroit have been through over the years with all the high draft picks and ensuing disappointments, no one who covers Detroit football is going to heap praise on anyone without a damn good reason to do so.
It's amazing that anyone in Detroit can find it in them to write anything positive about anyone who plays for the Lions. If it was me, and I had to cover the Lions, every column every day would be about 19 words long and read, "[Player X] sucks because he's a Detroit Lion. Wake me when they're .500. I'm telling you, that guy sucks." Then I'd go back to drinking at my desk.
Stafford seems to be forcing people out of their Detroit football funk, though. He's there, Lions fans. He's making progress, and he's attempting to fill you with hope. Whether or not you'll allow him to do that is up to you.