Stafford was listed as questionable coming into the game.
The Lions will be without defensive tackle Nick Fairley (foot). Tailback Jahvid Best, who leads team in rushing, was ruled out Friday because of a concussion. Maurice Morris starts in his place.
The Broncos will be without leading rusher Willis McGahee after he had surgery Tuesday to fix a broken finger on his right hand. Denver is down to two healthy backs in Knowshon Moreno and Lance Ball.
Pass-rusher Elvis Dumervil is scheduled to play despite missing most of the week with an ankle injury.