Stafford's extension is tacked on to the remainder of his rookie deal that was worth as much as $78 million with $41.7 million guaranteed when he signed it after being the No. 1 overall pick in the 2009 NFL Draft. There is still $23.5 milion remaining on that contract, which would have kept him in Detroit through 2014. Now with this extension, the Lions have their quarterback under contract through 2017.
The Lions are investing a significant amount of money in a player who hasn't proven himself much. Stafford missed huge chunks of his first two seasons through injury and after a breakout 2011 season that saw him complete 63.5 percent of passes for more than 5,000 yards 41 touchdowns and 16 interceptions, he regressed last season. His completion percentage and yards dipped, while he threw just 20 touchdowns to 17 interceptions.
Now the Lions are going to pay Stafford, a quarterback with just one good season under his belt, more than $60 million guaranteed through 2017. They may be trying to avoid a situation like the Ravens ended up with when they waited for Joe Flacco to prove himself, he won a Super Bowl and had to pay him $120 million, but Detroit is taking a risk of their own with this deal.