Did LA Rams OC Kevin O’Connell lose QB Jared Goff?

(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /

The LA Rams hired OC Keven O’Connell to connect with QB Jared Goff , and he did instantly. But what happened to that connection?

The LA Rams knew that their quarterback, Jared Goff, needed help in the offseason. After a charmed NFL career that launched him to competing in the Super Bowl in just his third season, he returned to earth the following season. Not just in more human-like numbers, but with fewer touchdowns and more interceptions. To make matters worse, he was throwing the ball more, but getting no additional yards.

The Rams are financially linked to Jared Goff. There is no rewrite, restructure, or waiver that is itself a poison pill for the Rams. No trade or draft pick can eliminate the marriage until Goff’s contract matures for many years. So the Rams did the next best thing and hired a fix-the-quarterback offensive coordinator out of Washington, Kevin O’Connell.

Accountability = now fix it

The first thing that the Rams needed to do was talk to the young quarterback Jared Goff. Settle him down and walk him through ways to improve his game to counter what defenses threw at him.  At first, it appeared to work. The LA Rams appeared to have assessed the correct steps to improve the maturation and development of Goff entering his fifth NFL season. He needed to take better accountability for the offense.

Goff himself trained hard to do better by moving in the pocket. And he practiced throwing with more accuracy and velocity while on the move. And for the positive influences, Goff has responded. He is throwing with far more accuracy than ever before in his career.  His limited mobility is enough to cap his sacks on or about 24 this season. and his quarterback rating has begun to rise once more, with six points higher than a year ago.

But the fix is not in just yet

With two thirds of the season gone, Goff is on track to put up another 4500+ yards passing, 20+ touchdowns, and approximately 15 interceptions. But let’s be honest. Those numbers look, sound, and even smell like 2019 all over again. So for all the fanfare and pageantry, the Rams are getting a heartbreak in offense with a bit more accuracy but with no real improvement in throwing touchdowns, avoiding interceptions, or finding ways to win ugly games on offense.

This is where O’Connell’s second set of eyes is critical. Not just to find where the problems are, but to talk up Goff right now. The Rams offensive leader is struggling under the weight of trying to do too much too often. That has allowed misreads to surface once more. And as indecision and pressure builds, confidence and expectations are on the decline.

Next. 10 reasons to believe LA Rams defense makes the difference this year. dark

Whatever else happens, the message of ‘We got this’ out of both Jared Goff and Kevin O’Connell needs to happen soon.  It’s not enough to be accountable. Taking responsibility also requires someone to fix it. Time for O’Connell and Goff to step up.