Lewand said that the intention for a new deal is to ensure that Stafford is the team's QB for the foreseeable future, rather than to free up salary cap space.
"Matthew Stafford is our quarterback, and we hope is our quarterback for a long time," Lewand told Mlive.com.
"The reason to explore a contract extension with Matthew is to fulfil that goal of having him be our quarterback for a long time. It's not a short-term look at the salary cap.
"That's the wrong way to look at that. When you look at extending somebody like Matthew, he's not going to take less money to extend. That's a very short-term focus to look at."
Stafford made 16 starts for the Lions last season, throwing 4,967 yards with a 59.8% completion rate.