In two years as Lions general manager, Bob Quinn has made two defining moves that stand out from the rest: extending Matthew Stafford by $135 million and hiring former Patriots coworker Matt Patricia to be his coach. Now, he appears tied to the hip of those decisions, for better or for worse. The Lions handed their general manager a contract extension Friday, three days after officially hiring Patricia and six months after signing Stafford, and the terms seem to follow a theme. Quinn's deal will now run through 2022. So will Patricia's, per ESPN. And that also happens to be when Stafford's contract is going to end. Owner Martha Firestone Ford will be 97 then. It isn't by coincidence that she's aligning the end dates here. If in five years a franchise quarterback in his prime with a defensive-minded coach and the boss who married them can't create new history for the franchise, drastic change will inevitably come. Only she knows the true markers she'll judge by, and those might change some based on circumstance, but the basic ones aren't hard to guess. The Lions haven't won a division title since 1993. They haven't won a playoff game since 1991. They've never played in a Super Bowl. Neither Stafford nor Quinn, and certain not Patricia, are solely responsible for any one of these trends existing. Nevertheless, their jobs are to end them. They will be defined by whether or not they can. All three of them, together. It's something president Rod Wood hinted at after Patricia officially became the next coach. "They're together, and they're both going to be responsible for our success," Ford said of Patricia and Quinn. "I feel confident we got the right partnership. If they're both tied to the hip, then I'm OK with that." The unspoken character at the time was Stafford, but he's always in the backdrop of everything. Quinn chose to lock into the Pro Bowl quarterback with a $135 million extension last summer, then the largest contract in NFL history. Quinn then fired coach Jim Caldwell after a 9-7 season because modest success isn't the standard they're chasing any more.
Lions have set a window on Matt Patricia, Bob Quinn and Matthew Stafford
Michigan Live | Feb 10