it's stafford -- or not

>> 4.22.2009

Dave Birkett of the Oakland Press has the scoop: the Stafford deal is done, and Lewand's getting the final sign-off right now:  http://tinyurl.com/ck5g95

Much, much, much more on this later.

UPDATE: Killer is reporting that the Lions are officially denying this story.

Uh, what?  Did the Lions leak the story to Birkett and then tell Kowalski it isn't true??  I'm offically stunned at this point.

UPDATE UPDATE: Birk sez: "Update at 3:20 p.m.: Keenist finally texted me a back a few minutes ago saying my report is "untrue." But the Lions still haven't returned my calls and I don't know what exactly is being denied. Lewand and Ford did meet today and my sources say a deal is "really close." When I have more, I'll let you know."

 . . . yeah, still completely stunned.

17 comments:

Anonymous,  April 22, 2009 at 2:56 PM  

And now the Lion's deny according to Killer....

http://www.mlive.com/lions/index.ssf

Anonymous,  April 22, 2009 at 3:28 PM  

Birk update

Update at 3:20 p.m.: Keenist finally texted me a back a few minutes ago saying my report is "untrue." But the Lions still haven't returned my calls and I don't know what exactly is being denied. Lewand and Ford did meet today and my sources say a deal is "really close." When I have more, I'll let you know

Ty April 22, 2009 at 3:32 PM  

Thanks, Anon.

Peace
Ty

Anonymous,  April 22, 2009 at 3:42 PM  

why are you stunned, ty? figured you'd know that stafford is their first choice [as of right now].

Anonymous,  April 22, 2009 at 3:43 PM  

He's stunned at how this has all been handled.

:)

Ty April 22, 2009 at 3:49 PM  

Oh, I'm not stunned that Stafford is their first choice, not at all. In fact, see my previous post:

"Matt Stafford will be the pick if he'll sign a reasonable deal. The Lions are using Aaron Curry as leverage to get Stafford to come down on price. If Stafford won't get at least within the ballpark before Saturday afternoon, Curry will be the pick."

What I'm stunned about is the news leaking via Birkett, then them not returning his call to confirm--but Keenist taking time out to call Kowalski and tell him it's all a lie. I really hope that this is all part of the plan, and that they're not hanging Birk out to dry.

Frankly, they've done WAY too good of a job managing all the informtion up until this point to have it all explode in this half-denied clusterfu . . dge. I am really confused about what is going on here.

Peace
Ty

Anonymous,  April 22, 2009 at 4:36 PM  

of course they're not hanging dave out to dry. bill texted him back and said that dave's report was untrue. it's on his blog.

my take - i think there's more truth to the story than not. tom's sources have been inconsistent at best while dave's have been more right than wrong. i'm inclined to believe dave's sources more than tom's at this point.

Ty April 22, 2009 at 4:46 PM  

"bill texted him back and said that dave's report was untrue. it's on his blog."

Yeah, I did see that; I noted the "UPDATE UPDATE:" I tacked on to my original post. Just from the timing though, it seems like Bill called Killer and gave him a verbal denial--then texted Dave to call the whole thing "untrue", vaguely enough that Dave's still standing behind his story.

My take is that you're absolutely right, Anon. I think Dave either got a hold of some very real info, or the Lions are in the midst of pulling one stunner of a smokescreen. Dave's been killing it lately, and the Lions have been really locking down the info . . . so I could see either scenario being true.

Peace
Ty

Anonymous,  April 22, 2009 at 5:02 PM  

Story is now on NFL.com.

I honestly can't see them putting that up there if it's just smoke.

My bet is close to what you said. Birk broke the story and the Lion's are doing damage control. Though I'm really not clear on what damage there is to control.

They have the first pick so they don't have to worry about anyone else taking their guy. Unless there's some crazy trade brewing which is about 99.9% unlikely I can't see any reason for the misinformation.

Anonymous,  April 22, 2009 at 5:03 PM  

Forgot the link...

http://blogs.nfl.com/2009/04/22/lions-in-final-negotiations-with-stafford/

Anonymous,  April 22, 2009 at 5:07 PM  

More Killer

"SOMEBODY is going to get signed very soon because the lions want that guy under contract before the draft starts and i don't think they're going to wait until the last minute ... the way i read it, they're still negotiating hard with stafford but they haven't reached an agreement ... if they get over the hurdles, then stafford's the guy ... if not, then it's going to be curry or smith ... but, either way, a signing is imminent ... "

Ty April 22, 2009 at 5:08 PM  

My guess all along is that they've wanted it to appear like it's a three-horse race between Stafford, Curry, and Smith, to keep the trade lines open and Stafford's contract demands down. They know the fans are screaming for Curry, so they openly hosted Andy Ross over the weekend . . . if they know they want Stafford, and have an agreement in principle, though, there's no point in controlling the damage.

UNLESS . . .

They think someone is willing to move up to get Stafford. Everything we've seen says that Sanchez is the board-climber, but then we also know that most of the teams in the top ten, could at least use a QB and the Jets and Redskins are both rumored to be trying to outtrade each other for Sanchez. Maybe this is a last-ditch attempt to flush a bird they think is there out of the bush?

Peace
Ty

Anonymous,  April 22, 2009 at 5:24 PM  

They think someone is willing to move up to get Stafford. Everything we've seen says that Sanchez is the board-climber, but then we also know that most of the teams in the top ten, could at least use a QB and the Jets and Redskins are both rumored to be trying to outtrade each other for Sanchez. Maybe this is a last-ditch attempt to flush a bird they think is there out of the bush?

That's the only thing that makes sense. Highly unlikely but nothing else really adds up to how this is playing out.

The only other thing is that Mayhew is such an information miser (he is) and doesn't want ANYONE to know his plans before he reveals them.

The only good thing to come out of this is the understanding that whoever they pick is a team decision. No more "Mr. Ford made them take him" or Lone Ranger Millen out of left field 2nd round picks. The guy they get is going to have every chance to succeed because the whole staff is behind him.

I know a lot of people don't want to believe that but it's about damn time that it happens. But you know that the clamor is going to start as soon as the pick is actually revealed.

Especially if it's Stafford.

Anonymous,  April 22, 2009 at 5:52 PM  

Source: Lions have Aaron Curry in fold if Matthew Stafford doesn't sign soon
by Tom Kowalski
Wednesday April 22, 2009, 5:19 PM
According to a league source, the Detroit Lions have completed contract terms with Wake Forest linebacker Aaron Curry and the team is now waiting to see if it can reach an agreement with their No. 1 target, Georgia quarterback Matthew Stafford. The source said the Lions will not allow a decision to go beyond Friday and if a deal isn't done with Stafford by then, the team will sign Curry and take him with the first overall draft pick.


The source said he believes that Stafford's agent, Tom Condon, will eventually agree to a deal with the Lions but probably won't do it until it gets closer to the Friday deadline. The price of the contract can only go up in the final hours so Condon will likely push the issue as far as he feels he has something to gain.

The Lions, according to the source, aren't budging and are just waiting to see if Stafford accepts their deal before they move to Curry. The Lions have been adamant that they want to get their draft pick signed before the draft starts at 4 p.m. on Saturday.

http://www.mlive.com/lions/index.ssf/2009/04/source_lions_have_aaron_curry.html
________________________________________________

Only way it's not Stafford is if Condon screws the pooch. But based off of everything Stafford has said and done to this point, I honestly can't see that happening.

Anonymous,  April 22, 2009 at 10:56 PM  

apparently schwartz has been behind stafford every step of the way:

http://sports.yahoo.com/top/news?slug=jc-condontalkingtolions042209&prov=yhoo&type=lgns

this is surprising to me for some reason. suffice it to say if it's true i'm def behind stafford being the pick now.

5Bakerstreet,  April 23, 2009 at 4:41 AM  

Actually it was the ESPN guy who goes up against Kiper all the time who broke the story before Birkett, but thats irrelevant.

The Lions appear to be taking a New World Order approach to this draft ... that being ... out of chaos will come order. And right now with 2.5 days to go to the draft I'm not believing anything regarding whats happening in the negotiations as reported by the media.

This from Cotsonika in today's edition of the Free Press, it says a lot but at the same time its not specific:

"Mayhew said the Lions can't fix all their problems this weekend. They shuffled their roster before the draft, and they will be active afterward.

"We have other opportunities to acquire players, either through waiver claims or trades, and we'll keep working on that," Mayhew said. "Our roster probably won't be really set until maybe sometime in training camp. There will be a number of holes after this draft that still have to be addressed.

"The Lions already have free agents in mind who could fill those holes. 'I think we'll be in contact with them over the next few days, and we'll be ready to pull the trigger on some signings next week depending on how the draft goes,' Mayhew said."

http://freep.com/article/20090423/SPORTS01/904230412/1049/The+Lions+may+use+both+first-round+picks+on+offensive+players

So from being a too vocal Curry supporter I've backtracked to becoming neutral because Mayhew and Schwartz with the new "illumined" way of procuring talent and will trust whichever way the draft goes simply because of the apparent chaos in the media reporting versus the the apparent orderly evaluaion process now emanting from Lions headquarters.

Job well done Mayhew and Schwartz. I can't wait for the draft and being illumined who are picks are. Let this New World Order begin.

Go Lions

Ty April 23, 2009 at 1:43 PM  

5Bakerstreet--

You know, I think all the chaos is out here. I think that for once, it's nothing but order inside Allen Park; they know exactly what they plan to do and how they plan to do it. I've got several big ideas for my next post, but I'm saving them until we see exactly what goes down . . . I've gotta see how this concludes. I need to know what Mayhew's final move is.

One thing I do know, I agree with this: "Job well done Mayhew and Schwartz. I can't wait for the draft and being illumined who are picks are. Let this New World Order begin."

Peace
Ty

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