Jared Goff, QB Los Angeles Rams
Sometimes, it’s awesome to be wrong. At the beginning of the season, I listed Goff as a possibility for the hot seat, unsure if he would develop, or regress further in his second year out of Cal. I’m very happy to say that Goff’s improvement has been a very pleasant surprise this season, not only looking every bit the first overall selection from two years ago, but becoming a true team leader for the playoff-bound Rams. Goff has flourished under new head coach Sean McVay, improving in pretty much every statistic category, from yards per attempt to sacks, and his TD-INT ratio is among the best in the NFL at 20-6. His elevated play and the intensity have brought to the Rams to the cusp of the playoffs again, and while it’s way too early to talk about similarities to “The Greatest Show on Turf”, it’s not too early to talk about a first round bye and hosting a playoff game. Goff’s decision making and aggressiveness have both improved, as has his chemistry with RB Todd Gurley, who is having the best season of his young career, proving equally effective both rushing and catching passes out of the backfield. The tandem will need to be in sync this weekend against an Eagles team that is 10-2, largely because they don’t allow the run. Goff will need to stretch the field early with a few well timed shots, as well as hit Gurley in the flat to put the pressure on an Eagles defense that has looked strong all season. If the Eagles choose to sell out to stop Gurley as a rusher, which they very likely will, they could be playing with fire.
We know that football games are never ACTUALLY QB competitions, but this Sunday, we could very well see who really is the star of the 2016 Draft, Goff, or the number two pick from that year, Eagles QB Carson Wentz. This matchup isn’t my Sunday Fireworks Show for nothing.
Image source: https://twitter.com/Rams
Tom Capo writes about sports, parenting, food, wine and travel; but seldom all at once. He’s currently working on his first novel and collection of shorter fiction. He lives in the Bay Area with all of his girls; wife Allison, daughter Liliana and dog Artemis.