The Los Angeles Rams decided to shake up their offense back in March when they shipped off QB Jared Goff and three draft picks to the Detroit Lions to bring in Matthew Stafford. While Stafford has played with some decent players on the Lions in the past, this Rams team is likely the best he's ever been a part of.
Plus, Rams head coach Sean McVay is certainly the best offensive mind Stafford has ever played for. All of that sets No. 9 up for a massive fantasy football season in 2021.
Matthew Stafford Fantasy Outlook
Stafford started in all 16 games for the Lions last season, finishing his 12th NFL campaign with 26 touchdowns to 10 interceptions while surpassing 4,000 passing yards for the eighth time. However, he was also stuck behind a Lions offensive line that allowed him to get sacked 38 times — the seventh-highest amount in the league.
Needless to say, Stafford will be better protected in Los Angeles. The Rams allowed just 1.8 sacks per game (T-9th) in 2020, which should give the veteran gunslinger more time to throw the ball going forward.
Stafford will also be surrounded with talented pass-catchers, such as Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp — two wideouts who each went for over 900 receiving yards last year. Considering how Stafford is a significant improvement over Goff, it's not unfathomable to imagine Woods, Kupp and even Stafford producing career-best numbers in 2021.
Plus, Stafford is pretty much the perfect fit for a McVay-led offense. Few coaches use play action more than McVay, whose offenses have ranked top three in play-action percentage every year since he took over.
And few quarterbacks are deadlier in play action than Stafford. In fact, the former Lions' gunslinger has generated the second-most Expected Points Added (EPA) on play-action throws since 2019. Yet despite his efficiency, Stafford only used play action at the 19th-highest rate in the league during that span.
Essentially, if McVay properly utilizes his new franchise QB, Stafford could be poised for a monstrous year.
Stafford is currently listed as QB13 on Fantasy Pros and QB10 on The Duel's fantasy football ranking. Even if some people might be sleeping on him, there's plenty of potential for the Rams QB to have his best season to date in 2021.
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