We do live and die by Stafford’s arm.
Per Kurt Warner:
“He’s as talented as anybody in this league,” said Warner, now an analyst with NFL Network. “He’s a gifted, gifted thrower. I expect him to play well. The one thing that I’ve always felt with Matthew is just that, A, he’s been asked to do so much for that organization. He’s been asked to have to play at a certain level every single week, every single year (if) they’re going to be successful, and I think a big part in that is that he feels like he’s got to make every play. And so he can have great stretches, but ultimately that comes back to haunt any quarterback, no matter how talented you are, if you feel like you have to make every single play for your team.”
That’s what I saw from Stafford against the Bears: A quarterback who played really good football for 3½ quarters but still found his team on the precipice of losing. He had a running game, which he hasn’t for so long, but his No. 1 receiver (Golladay) was out with a hamstring injury and his defense was starting to crack, so he took a sack when he shouldn’t have, hoping to make a play, then tried to squeeze a pass into a tiny window between two defenders.