PFF early analysis contrary suggests Lions will benefit more from Goff

Mandatory Credit: Lionsminn
Mandatory Credit: Lionsminn /

The LA Rams have already lit up the NFL with a blockbuster trade. But, in the course of any trade, even before the ink dries on the contracts, there is an immediate urge to declare winners and losers.  Who came out ahead?  Well, the truth is that nobody can truly declare a definitive winner or loser in the latest LA Rams and Detroit Lions’ transaction because the result won’t be certain until 2027 at the earliest.

The LA Rams packaged a 2021 third-round, and 2022 and 2023 first-round picks as part of the package accompanying Jared Goff to the Lions in exchange for quarterback Matthew Stafford.  The value of those first-round picks won’t be appraised until the players selected have determined the course of their NFL career.

Still, there are ways to estimate impacts, guess at the future of any exchange. Pro Football Focus has waded in on the trade package, and the curious thing is, have estimated that even on a head-to-head basis, quarterback Jared Goff may be more successful with the Detroit Lions.

That’s not an isolated view by any means. Defensive lineman Ndamukong Suh is one of the few players who has been a teammate of both Jared Goff and Matthew Stafford.  He was once quoted as saying that Jared Goff was ‘the best quarterback I’ve ever played for.’

Of course, Suh played for the LA Rams in 2018, when Jared Goff was able to lead the Rams to Super Bowl LIII. In that year, Goff had a solid running game and played behind a rock-solid fortress of an offensive line. That was just one season for Goff, who was 43-21 under head coach Sean McVay. He was also 3-3 in the NFL Playoffs.

Those facts get glazed over pretty frequently but are outstanding for a five-year quarterback. And Goff is only one of five NFL quarterbacks to win the NFC Championship Game since he entered the league. So why did the Rams trade him away?

Quarterback Matthew Stafford is better equipped to help the Rams accomplish winning a Super Bowl now. At least that is the Rams belief. But on paper, Goff and Stafford are very comparable. Then, toss in the 3 draft picks used to sweeten the package for the Lions and it’s hard to say that the Lions ‘lost’ this trade.

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It will likely turn out that both teams eventually emerge a winner in this one. The Rams end up with a veteran quarterback who is capable of great things this season. The Lions end up with a young quarterback who is capable of great things this season and well into the future.