Allen Park — In the moment, Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford was heated.
Following a timeout call from his sideline that nixed a would-be, third-down conversion, and a subsequent failure to repeat that success following the break in the action, Stafford was caught by the broadcast camera during Sunday’s tie with the Arizona Cardinals appearing to shout, “Trust me,” to no one in particular.
“I just wanted to make sure that we got the play off, but we didn’t,” Stafford said. “I’m over it. Keep it moving.”
Three days later, Stafford said he understands the team’s decision to call the timeout.
“We had a delay of game earlier in the game, so I understand from the sideline’s point of view,” Stafford said. “We’re all trying to win, man. We’re all trying to do everything we can to win. I’ve got a ton of trust in our process and everything that goes into trying to win, so I’m really not too worried about it.”
According to NFL rules, only the head coach or a player on the field can call for a timeout, but Lions offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell was seen signaling for the stoppage.
Lions coach Matt Patricia, who is temporarily operating with limited mobility following offseason leg surgery, said the team cleared an exemption with the NFL while he recovers.
“All that stuff — what you do is you go through the league to get approval depending on who we want to do it during the game if I can’t physically do it,” Patricia said.
In addition to Bevell, chief of staff Kevin Anderson has also been handling timeout calls. The decisions all still come from Patricia, relayed through headset communication.