Detroit Lions resign QB Nate Sudfeld, a nod to his valuable role


In football, not every player who helps the team win games is out there scoring touchdowns. Nate Sudfeld’s role with the Detroit Lions is a great example.

The Lions have re-signed Sudfeld for at least one more season. He’ll mainly help from the sidelines as the third-string quarterback. This signing highlights the critical support role Sudfeld plays within the quarterback room, especially in his contribution to Jared Goff’s season and game-week preparations.

Despite joining the Lions roster shortly before the 2022 season began, Sudfeld quickly made his mark, showcasing a calm and confident demeanor that signaled his readiness to tackle any role. His 2023 season was unfortunately cut short due to an ACL injury in the preseason. Yet, his commitment to supporting Goff has remained unwavering.

A “perfect” fit

Quarterbacks coach Mark Brunell speaks highly of Sudfeld, emphasizing his “perfect” fit within the team’s dynamic. Brunell notes, “He was perfect… It’s very important for a starter to have a resource on the sidelines, in the meeting room, a backup guy that really just wants to help Jared be the best that he can be.”

This sentiment is echoed by Sudfeld himself. He values the opportunity to bring his extensive experience and knowledge to the Lions’ quarterback room. Sudfeld shared:

I’ve been very fortunate to be around some incredible minds, and I’ve really tried to soak up as much as I could with each coach, each staff I’ve been in. I feel like I’ve always kind of been in a room that’s been on the cutting edge of scheme, and the cutting edge of preparation and just how we attack a defense, so its been really fun to kind of contribute some of that knowledge and relate some of that knowledge into what we’re doing here…Jared and I have had some similar experiences with some coaches to where we are able to speak the same language in some ways which has been really fun…we’re able to challenge each other.

Sudfeld’s understanding and communication skills have been pivotal in preparing Goff for the challenges of NFL defenses. Their shared experiences and compatibility in “speaking the same language” have fostered a collaborative environment conducive to Goff’s development and success on the field.

An “intelligent, intelligent quarterback”

Critics questioning General Manager Brad Holmes’s decision to retain Sudfeld, even before Goff’s extension, fail to recognize the nuanced value he brings to the Lions. Brunell describes Sudfeld as an “intelligent, intelligent quarterback,” a quality that has made him an indispensable asset in the quarterback room. This intelligence, coupled with Sudfeld’s past experience—including playoff success and a Super Bowl win—highlights his ability to contribute significantly to the team’s winning culture.

Everywhere I’m trying to go I want to do what I can to help (the team) win. I’ve been fortunate that I’ve had a lot of winning seasons, a lot of playoff experiences. Even a championship was really cool, too. So, just trying to continue to do it one year at a time.

As the Lions continue their journey towards a Lombardi Trophy, Nate Sudfeld remains a pivotal figure behind the scenes. His role, while not always visible on game day, is a part of the Lions’ strategy, proving that the influence of players like Sudfeld is indeed significant.


For more from our Detroit Lions beat writer, Matt Broder, check him out on Twitter here: @mattbro21


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Original Photo Credit: © Junfu Han / USA TODAY NETWORK