You’ll know Goff is better when Rams Zuerlein and Hekker are not Pro Bowlers

NASHVILLE, TN - DECEMBER 24: Los Angeles Rams Quarterback Jared Goff
NASHVILLE, TN - DECEMBER 24: Los Angeles Rams Quarterback Jared Goff /

Los Angeles Rams quarterback Jared Goff had a solid 2017, as did Greg Zuerlein and Johnny Hekker. But the messuring stick for how good Goff ultimately is, may be when those special teams standouts aren’t going to the Pro Bowl.

Without question, the Los Angeles Rams have by far the best special teams in the National Football League. They stand to probably continue that trend in 2018, especially if kicker Greg Zuerlein and his back regain their previous form.

They also have been a nice compliment to an offense and a quarterback who is still a work in progress entering his third season.

Easy now.

I’m not saying Jared Goff is anything less than he showed in 2017, but I am saying his progress can and will be measured by how much less those special teams guys are used in the near future.

Currently, it’s a quantifiable luxury having BOTH Zuerlein and punter Johnny Hekker on the sidelines should the Rams offense either stall and need a field goal, or a punt that buys valuable real estate for the defense.

I mean, both Hekker and Zuerlein are money in the bank, and they eliminates a TON of pressure from a still young quarterback who is more game manager RIGHT NOW, than “get on my back and I’ll get you there.”

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That’s not a bad thing fans.

But don’t tell me he’s also “Bradyesque” in making the magic happen when he absolutely needs to, especially when the safety valve in either the Rams punting game or a near lock of 3-points is on the sidelines ready to be deployed.

SEATTLE, WA – DECEMBER 17: Kicker Greg Zuerlein
SEATTLE, WA – DECEMBER 17: Kicker Greg Zuerlein /

Like I said, it’s a luxury and a remarkable balance Los Angeles has.

Don’t forget that sinking feeling in Rams Nation when the team announced Legatron was sidelined for the balance of the 2017 season INCLUDING the playoffs.

You all had a nervous tick suddenly.

Fact is, that queasiness goes away the moment Goff is able, with confidence, to get the ball in the end zone sans a Todd Gurley or a Robert Woods, the two Rams players who were the centerpiece of an LA offense that generated a ton of points.

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Meaning, until Goff is something other than a complimentary game manager, Legatron and Hekker are Hall of Famers in waiting as their starting quarterback is the guy giving them ample and numerous opportunities to shine big and bright.

Hey, game managers aren’t bad, and Goff is a guy who’s benefited from some absolutely brilliant moves the Los Angeles Rams have made on offense.

And the headliners on special teams are the beneficiaries of that solid game management, too.