The winless 0-7 Detroit Lions are set to square off with a 2-5 Philadelphia Eagles club in a must-win situation as the bottom of the NFC East is backlogged with three teams all 2-5 chasing the 5-1 Dallas Cowboys.
Leading up to last week’s matchup with the Los Angeles Rams, Goff had been highly criticized for his efforts in a routing the week prior at home against the Cincinnati Bengals. The fact is, sitting Goff for an even worse option at the position in David Blough wouldn’t solve anything.
I don’t dislike Blough, but let’s understand one thing, he’s not an NFL starting quarterback. As much as Goff has struggled throughout the 2021 season, it’s foolish to consider Blough as an upgrade.
Blough is rostered in case an injury occurs to Goff, and perhaps if he endures another type of game like he did against the Bengals, Blough can come in off the bench in relief, but in all likelihood, Goff would return under center the following week.
Goff is completing 66% of his passes, Blough completed 54.3% of his passes in six contests, and those were with players like Kenny Golladay, Marvin Jones, Danny Amendola, and T.J. Hockenson rostered, not this group of castaways currently on the team.
We’re openly criticizing Goff for checking the football down far too often. Goff is averaging 6.5 yards per attempt in 2021, nearly a full yard below his career average, and people want to bring in Blough, who has averaged 5.6 yards per attempt during his career.
I also find it comical that we (myself included) openly bark about Goff’s unwillingness to throw the football down the field but gleam at how well D’Andre Swift is performing as he leads all NFL running backs in receiving.
Swift is benefitting from Goff’s check-downs, and we love it, but I recognize it’s not just the check-downs; it’s when the check-down occurs. The Detroit Lions are famous for throwing to a route five yards short of the line to gain on third down.
Since losing their top receiver, Tyrell Williams, in Week One, plus Quintez Cephus for the season, Swift leads the Lions in receiving with 391 yards, followed by Hockenson at 359 and Raymond with 334.
Jared Goff is not the long-term answer for the Detroit Lions but isn’t going anywhere soon.
First, the Detroit Lions owe Goff a whopping $31 million in 2022 with a dead cap of $30.5 million. Goff will be the starting quarterback barring injury for the remainder of this season and next while the organization searches for their next franchise signal-caller.
Following the 2022 season, the Detroit Lions can cut or trade Goff costing them $10 million in ’23 and $5 million in ’24 in dead cap money.
The problem in Detroit isn’t just their quarterback play; the offense is extremely compromised by having a lack of play-making talent. Goff is leaning on Kalif Raymond, T.J. Hockenson, and D’Andre Swift in the passing game with really no alternative options. Rookie pass-catcher Amon-Ra St. Brown hasn’t developed into a reliable third option quite yet; that is not a knock on the youngster; I feel he needs more time to grow as a professional.
So far in 2021, the Detroit Lions rank 28th in scoring offense, 24th in total offense, 22nd in rushing offense, and 17th in passing offense. It’s terrible, but it’s not nearly as bad as it seems, and when you look at the roster, it seems almost incredible they are not dead last in all categories aside from the rushing offense. We knew entering the season with Swift and Jamaal Williams at offensive coordinator Anthony Lynn’s control, Detroit would be a solid rushing team.
The Detroit Lions are expected to land a top-three draft pick, but there is a major problem. After back-to-back years that saw plenty of talented signal-callers entering the NFL Draft, there doesn’t seem like a ‘sure-thing’ at the position ahead of the 2022 NFL Draft. Top quarterback prospects Spencer Rattler and Sam Howell have not lived up to the hype.
The Detroit Lions would be better suited to eye a quarterback in the 2023 NFL Draft when Ohio State’s C.J. Stroud is expected to head the class.
Instead, the Detroit Lions, if awarded the first overall choice, will select Oregon’s star pass-rushing defensive end, Kayvon Thibodeaux.