Matthew Stafford has endured an uneven campaign through 11 games after passing for more than 5,000 yards and 41 touchdowns a season ago.
One of the knocks this season on the Detroit Lions quarterback has been problematic mechanics. Stafford struggled with accuracy early in the season, but those problems never received the same attention as, say, Cam Newton's ups and downs.
We've seen Stafford's season even out and he's finally found some rhythm with his No. 1 target, Calvin Johnson. Stafford -- and maybe this is all that matters -- leads the NFL in passing yardage (3,429) and Megatron tops that category catching the ball. Lions coach Jim Schwartz insists the technical aspect of Stafford's game is sound.
"His mechanics are outstanding," Schwartz said Wednesday, via MLive.com. "I mean, when he drops back and throws it, he can do it about any way that you want."
ESPN's Ron Jaworski said in October that Stafford's elbow has a tendency to drop on throws, causing his passes to sail. Stafford still is completing 60.7 percent of his passes and says he's comfortable with his approach heading into Week 13.
"I feel pretty good about (my mechanics)," Stafford said. "I'm not a robotic-type quarterback. I play off feel. I don't try to do anything. It just happens the way it happens, whether that's throwing it overhand, underhand, sidearm, left-handed. I go out there and play and try to put the ball in a good spot."
Nobody's ever questioned Stafford's arm strength. He has one of the NFL's true cannons. We'd still like to see the Lions, as an offense, finish drives. They're the No. 1 passing team in football, but near the bottom of the league on the ground.
Balance has been an issue and the inability to threaten opponents with the run affects their play-action passing game and limits what they can do formationally to throw off a defense. Teams know the Lions are going to wing the ball all day long, and that lack of deception has contributed to the 4-7 record.
Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.