A wild NFL offseason with a potential quarterback move started off on a roll when the Rams and Lions agreed to trade their starting passer in 2021.
Matthew Stafford heads west to play for Sean McVay in Los Angeles, while Jared Goff ships to Detroit to operate under new head coach Dan Campbell. The deal won’t go into effect until the start of the New Year in the NFL on March 17, but it quickly sets the tone for a drastic QB change in the league.
New Lions general manager Brad Holmes, who was from the Rams organization, reunites with Goff. For McVay and Rams general manager Les Snead, they’re getting a little older and improving at QB with 32-year-old Stafford.
The only difference is that the Lions have amassed other assets in the exchange, when it cost the Rams much more than Goff. Here’s how the trade ranked on both sides:
Matthew Stafford-Jared Goff Commercial Ranks
- QB Jared Goff
- Third round pick in 2021
- First round pick in 2022
- First round pick in 2023
The Rams were planning to have Goff, the first overall pick in 2006, compete with John Wolford for the starting position in 2021. With that, it made sense to try to break out of his contract and go for a veteran of sincerity. the best football of his career. Stafford makes the Rams a dangerous passing team again with his big arm and weapons like Robert Woods, Cooper Kupp and Van Jefferson. McVay’s training will make the most of Stafford and give him a chance to be a playoff-winning QB, which he never was.
Here’s the catch: On paper, Stafford measures taller than Goff in every way, but his CV is slim when it comes to putting a team on his back. The Seahawks still have Russell Wilson, while Kyler Murray is a leader and rising NFC West superstar. The 49ers could also soon make a big QB upgrade as recent NFC champions.
Stafford is giving the Rams a higher floor and keeping them as a strong playoff contender, but overall trying to get back to the Super Bowl has an overrated cap. The Rams, who do not yet have a first-round pick in 2021, have dropped two more over the next two years.
McVay and Snead’s plan to go there now has had mixed results, and they are not well placed for imminent rebuilding in the near future. Stafford’s contractual situation is more conducive to the flexibility of free agencies elsewhere, but he only has two years left on his contract, which means he is also not guaranteed to be in Los Angeles in the long term. .
The Rams get points for being aggressive to improve their competitive status, but they’re tied down for short vision and giving up a bit too much.
Think of Goff as the gravy in this deal instead of the meat: if you think of this trade as Lions choosing to switch from Stafford to Goff, then you’ve got a bad outlook. Instead, Holmes maximized the return for Stafford – a QB and organization couple who didn’t want to be together anymore – and more. Goff has been struggling lately for McVay but a change of scenery can help, and he also joins offensive coordinator Anthony Lynn, another import from LA; Lynn did a good job with Philip Rivers and Justin Herbert as the Chargers head coach.
Goff is giving the Lions a viable option to start now, saying he needs to reach a QB in the 2021 NFL Draft, unsure whether Ohio State’s Justin Fields or BYU’s Zach Wilson would still be available in the No.7 pick. The Lions figure to re-sign wide receiver Kenny Golladay for Goff, while also looking to replace former free agent wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. running back Andre Swift, tight end TJ Hockenson and a Underrated offensive line can all help lift Goff, too.
Goff is a more dependent QB than Stafford, in terms of both system and personnel. To that end, the Lions can always get above-average production from him in a Stafford depot.
More importantly, Holmes has broadened his selections for 2021 and secured the Lions selection in the first round five times over the next three years. The new GM was well aware that his team had to embark on a rebuild so that the Lions were ready to blow the Packers, Vikings and Bears in a few years. Detroit can now accelerate its youth movement and store much needed new talent on both sides of the ball.
The Rams’ acquisition of Stafford came at a high opportunity cost. The Lions didn’t want Stafford, they got their best picks for the long term and a decent QB option for the short term. Rams can only win a limited number of additional games with Stafford, while Lions can be proud to “win” the trade.