Jared Goff gives the Detroit Lions plenty of flexibility

Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports
Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports /

Adding Jared Goff may not actually be a horrible thing like many are making it out to be.  The Detroit Lions need a placeholder, and why not it be someone with playoff success and some Super Bowl experience.

According to Peter Schrager of Good Morning Football, while appearing on the Dan Patrick Show, mentioned that the Detroit Lions had a firm offer for Matthew Stafford from the Carolina Panthers.  The deal included the 8th overall pick in 2021, along with quarterback Teddy Bridgewater and potentially a future first-round pick.

Later in the show, Patrick also mentioned that the Denver Broncos also proposed a trade for Stafford, offering up the ninth pick in 2021 and quarterback Drew Lock.

The knock-on this deal with the Rams within Lions’ fans seems to be that the organization didn’t secure a first-round pick in 2021, but two future firsts rather than stockpiling two top-ten choices in 2021.

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All signs are pointing to Jared Goff being a significant part of this deal for the Detroit Lions.

My initial reaction was Goff being a ‘throw-in’ that needed to be apart of the deal due to his high salary.  That may still be true, but it appears Detroit favored Goff over Bridgewater, or why wouldn’t the organization secure back-to-back top-ten picks in 2021?

Imagine the talent Holmes would have been able to obtain having two top-ten picks?

Bridgewater is more of a game manager and carries a cap hit of $23 million and $26 million over the next two seasons.  The 28-year old’s deal does allow for a potential release after the 2021 season, only costing $5 million against the cap.

So the Detroit Lions didn’t just opt for Goff over Bridgewater; they chose an extra year of Goff.

The 26-year old Goff will cost the Lions $27.8 million in 2021 and $25.5 million in 2022. After that, Detroit can ax the final two years of his deal without costing a penny.

It appears Lions General Manager Brad Holmes, who apparently lobbied for the Los Angeles Rams to draft Goff, may have his sights on strapping in for the long-haul.

Goff has playoff experience, he’s played in a Super Bowl, and he’s just 26-years old heading into his sixth NFL season, and knowing the strained relationship between him and his former head coach in Sean McVay, maybe a change of scenery will help elevate his game.

After producing a stellar 2018 season guiding the Rams to a 13-3 record, throwing for 4,688 yards, 32 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions, Goff’s numbers have declined in each of his last two seasons.

What if Goff excels in Anthony Lynn’s system?

He’s young enough to have around for the next ten years if he can figure things out.  We can’t just write the 26-year old off until we see him perform in a Detroit uniform.

Adding Goff and knowing he will be under center for at least the next two seasons allows for draft flexibility.  Detroit doesn’t necessarily need to draft a quarterback with the seventh pick, and they don’t need to press and try to trade up spending all of their recently acquired draft capital to draft a quarterback in 2021 either.

I’ve said this before; the Detroit Lions should not draft a quarterback in 2021 just to draft a quarterback.  It’s simple.  If the Lions can secure their first choice at the position, I’m all for it; trade up and get him.

Let’s use Zach Wilson as an example.

If Wilson is Detroit’s top choice and they can carve out a path to get him, do it.  If Holmes has Justin Fields as a close second-choice and they can get him, I’m all for it.  If both are gone, and Holmes doesn’t love Trey Lance, don’t select him just because and leave someone like Micah Parsons or DeVonta Smith on the board.

This is where Holmes will earn him money.  The newly appointed Lions GM needs to decide if there is a significant talent-gap between a Lance or someone Detroit could pick in the second round, like potentially Mac Jones or Kyle Trask.

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Bringing in Goff does give the organization options now and in the future.