Jared Goff most likely isn’t going anywhere

Los Angeles Rams v Seattle Seahawks
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In 2015, the Buccaneers and Titans held the first two picks in the draft. They made quarterbacks Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota the first and second overall picks, respectively.

Both had their fifth-year options exercised. Neither got second contracts. They each left via free agency after five seasons to become backups elsewhere.

In 2016, the Rams and Eagles traded up to get the first two picks in the draft. They made quarterbacks Jared Goff and Carson Wentz the first and second overall picks, respectively.

Both got long-term contracts with top-of-market value after only three seasons. Their teams surely regret those decisions now, albeit for very different reasons.

Wentz had become a short-list MVP candidate in only his second season. He got his new deal after the 2018 campaign. He played well in 2019, willing the team to a playoff berth, before falling apart in 2020. Goff, in contrast, has never been among the best players in football. Even in 2018, a season that resulted in a Super Bowl berth for the Rams, Goff got zero MVP votes.

But he got a long-term deal in 2019 with a new-money value of $33.5 million per year, even though some were wondering whether the Rams should wait. As he completes the second season of that new contract, Rams fans have to be wondering whether they should have declined to extend him, kept him for five years, and then searched for a new quarterback elsewhere to run the Sean McVay offense.

Coincidentally, the Rams will now turn elsewhere at quarterback, thanks to Goff’s thumb injury. If McVay is the genius that he seems to be, he should be able to make chicken salad with John Wolford. If that happens, however, the questions will linger regarding whether it made sense to keep Goff or to move on.

That won’t be happening, given Goff’s contract. Trading Goff would trigger a cap charge of $22.2 million for the Rams in 2021, although that’s far lower than his $34.625 million cap number for next year.

The bigger challenge when trading him comes to finding his next destination. Goff has a fully-guaranteed 2021 salary in the amount of $25.325 million, a fully-guaranteed 2021 roster bonus of $2.5 million, and a fully-guaranteed 2022 roster bonus of $15.5 million. Which other team would take on that kind of financial commitment, especially when the guarantees contain no offset language?

Wentz creates a similar dilemma for the Eagles, but the Colts could end up being his destination. Also, the Eagles have a viable replacement in Jalen Hurts. The Rams have only Wolford, along with no obvious new home for Goff.

We’ll find out on Sunday whether Wolford can be the next successful Rams replacement quarterback in a line that traces back to Kurt Warner and Vince Ferragamo. Even then, it’s unlikely that Goff won’t be the Rams’ starting quarterback, at least for the next two years.

Still, the struggles of Goff and Wentz highlight the question of whether teams who find competent quarterbacks at the top of the draft should blindly extend them with big-money second contracts. The Bucs and Titans surely don’t regret passing on paying Winston and Mariota; the Rams and Eagles surely regret giving out those massive second contracts.

36 responses to “Jared Goff most likely isn’t going anywhere

  1. These NFL teams will never learn. The huge contracts given to Wentz, Goff, Garappolo, Cousins, and Derek Carr have equated into nothing. None of them are elite QB’s and none of them are worth anywhere near the money they are being paid.
    Now, their teams are stuck with them, even though they’d all like to get rid of them and start over.

  2. I know it won’t happen because of Jalen Hurts but:

    A JARED GOFF FOR CARSON WENTZ SWAP SHOULD TOTALLY HAPPEN!

    As just an NFL environmental experiment if nothing else.

    Wentz with McVay and better weapons and O line than in Philly has to work right?!?

  3. McVay is the only coach in the NFL that gets credit for playing the QB position as well.

    Goff was at least a borderline top 10 QB who appeared to be ascending after the 2017 and 2018 seasons. He has not continued on an upward trajectory.

    No, I do not agree that McVay can plug anyone into his system and make it work. Rams have not replaced Todd Gurley’s presence on the field and do not have a field stretching threat since Brandin Cooks left. Their top two offensive lineman from 2017-18 are not currently playing for them. Whitworth is injured and Saffold is in Tennessee.

    Until they add more playmakers on offense and upgrade their offensive line, McVay’s offense will not get back to where it was.

  4. Even if the Rams regret the decision, Goff still took his team to an NFC Championship and SB. There is no monetary value on that fact which is why they gave him the extension. They will keep him and the 49ers should keep Garopollo as well because these coaching “geniuses” are not going to win with anyone else unless it’s with other high pick rookies.

  5. I don’t know what either of those teams were thinking giving them those big contracts after only three years. Now it has come back to bite both of them. They are also stuck with them for at least two more years and it’s not likely any team will trade for them because of their contracts. The Colts could go and get Wentz but I can’t see them giving anything in return except for a 3rd day pick and the Eagles may have to eat some of his salary–which seems only fair since they signed him to that dumb contract. The same for Goff. These two are an example of how to cripple your team’s cap with giving young guys a ton of money who subsequently did very little to earn those contracts.

  6. The issue is Goof not McVays offense. Have you seen Jared play the last few weeks?
    Pathetic and not much to really like about this team going forward in Goff is the QB.

  7. Was that ever in question? Because of that boneheaded extension for him the Rams can’t move him for another 2 years.

  8. Flacco got paid after he won many many playoff games and finally the SB. That is somewhat palatable for the fans and the organization. He still would have got paid no matter what for all those playoff years. But guys like Goff, Carr, Wentz and Dak are unproven and have no playoff pedigree

  9. Teams need to stop paying average QBs like they are elite. If those QBs don’t like it, let them move on and become a problem for another team. You can win with a mid-tier QB if the team around him is solid, but you can’t build a good team if your mid-tier QB is eating up most of the salary cap.

  10. Offering 2nd contracts to Goff and Wentz was not a bad plan. The bad play was overpaying for them and making the contract terms too long. They were not sure things.

  11. mikeyb says:
    December 29, 2020 at 7:32 pm

    These NFL teams will never learn. The huge contracts given to Wentz, Goff, Garappolo, Cousins, and Derek Carr have equated into nothing. None of them are elite QB’s and none of them are worth anywhere near the money they are being paid.
    Now, their teams are stuck with them, even though they’d all like to get rid of them and start over.

    ***********************
    Nice over-generalization dude…
    These are all VERY different circumstances, and not even remotely related.

    The only real “Bust” among them all is Wentz. He fell apart in every season, and he did not “will” the eagles to the playoffs. Everyone wanted to anoint that dude, and I NEVER saw it.

  12. While I don’t deny he looks terrible now, he’d been to 2 pro bowls and a Super Bowl at the time he signed his contract. In hindsight it was a bad idea but at the time it seemed valid.
    The talent is still there but something is wrong in his head space. I suspect losing Matt Lafleur & Zac Taylor has something to do with it.

  13. Trying to beat the curve and getting a discount by extending the rookie contacts of 4th year QBs is not worth the risk.

  14. If both quarterbacks understand that they just have to manage the game, not make big mistakes, then they can prosper. Heck, the Ravens won a SB with the exact same QB talent but they had a better team built around them.

  15. Rams need to improve on team depth, need some young cheap skill players, upgrade the line some. Goff will be fine when that happens, but the effort from the GM and talent assessors needs to improve as there really isn’t a lot of $$ to poor into the offense.

    Trying to patch up where the offense is lacking with veteran rental players is real tough. Players come, players leave when they perform well for more $$, or they get hurt having already taken too many hits in career. The key is to get what is needed through the draft and coach them up quick. As to the O line, a few well spent bucks can upgrade the depth a lot cheaper, unlike the skilled positions. Exception is what LV did in pulling in Agular, this year. But that is the rare exception.

  16. What a shame that Cookes had all the concussions. Rams can’t be blamed for not wanting to lock up so much capital in that situation, but they did not replace his stretch the field abilities and they sure needed to.

  17. It’s a very interesting dilemma for teams these days. Do we spend a ton of trade stock to trade up for the next “Franchise QB” and then pay him big bucks in year 4 or 5? Or do keep our trade stock and hope we can somehow snag a Russell Wilson, Jalen Hurts or Tom Brady on day 2 or 3 of the draft? Then you also have those excellent diamonds found in late 1st round picks like Rodgers or Lamar Jackson.

    What does it all mean? It means that whether any of us wants to believe it or not, the entire draft is a poorly executed game of chance. Like a star .300 hitter in baseball, top NFL scouts and GM’s are only successful about 1/3 of the time.

  18. So what direction is the wind blowing at this hour? Because that’s the direction people on this site will support and then change their minds in less than 10 minutes. Goff good! Goff bad! Goff kind of good! Goff kind of bad! It’s pretty funny seeing the 20/20 hindsight comments on here. “See I told you that guy in 2018 who was an MVP candidate and took his team to the super bowl wasn’t good!”

  19. Hopefully this helps to kind of reset the QB market again. So teams aren’t just throwing out record breaking contracts to whichever QB is up next for renewal.

  20. No way any sane GM would trade for Goff with the money owed him. Was going to make a B.O.B. joke but he would even turn that money owned down.

  21. Don’t even try to suggest that Wentz is still the better QB, and no, Wentz did NOT play well last year. They were lucky to even make the playoffs in that pathetic division.

  22. Had Winston or Mariotta been a front runner for MVP or had lead their team to a Superbowl appearance they probably get a second contract.
    Teams overpay quarterbacks.
    You can say they should have waited but Dallas waited and now they either overpay Dak or go back into the QB market.
    I guess the question is… is it better to overpay a decent QB who you have won with and coach around any flaws? Or ditch what you know and hope the next young guy is as good enough at whatever price you get him.
    That’s a tough gamble for a coach or GM when their jobs in the line.

  23. These contracts are what the market dictates, not what the organizations feel the individual’s past performance deserves. It’s the reality of keeping the QBs under contract, away from free agency, in order to maintain the progression of maturity at the position. The potential upside is purchased with the new contracts. There is no current fix to this system, except for this coming seasons harsh reality of a reduced CAP which will force teams to restrain themselves from these types of signings.

  24. reezie787 says:
    December 29, 2020 at 8:31 pm
    Trying to beat the curve and getting a discount by extending the rookie contacts of 4th year QBs is not worth the risk.

    I think the Chiefs will be okay.

  25. Now that Dalton has started to get situated in the Dallas offense, he’s putting up numbers like Dak. Plus the team is actually winning games instead of the QB putting up stats after falling way behind. Do you pay Dak like he’s Mahomes? Or do you pay Dalton much less and dominate the NFC East next season?

  26. I 100 percent agree with the comment after the wind changing the comments and the hindsight being 20/20. People fail to realize that just because these guys make big money the results are going to be guaranteed obviously do not understand what playing the market. That is essentially what it is, some stocks do well others crash.

    This is not like buying a suit, car or an expensive dinner. There are so many intangibles that go into a player being successful and their lack of success. In the situation with the Vikings after having been to the NFC title game the year before, not knowing how Bridgewater’s injury was going to turn out they were in a catch 22. Being that close the year before they decided to go with Cousins a vet and he got his money, it was the market price at the time. The guy has been durable, never injured has thrown for 25 TDs or more the 5 or 6 years.

    So if Brees, Brady or Rodgers do not win a Super Bowl are they being paid too much as well?

  27. I am a Bucs fan and when they benched him in the middle of his 4th season and he so he would not get hurt due to the money in season 5 only being guaranteed for injury, I was in the camp of the GM going to him and offering a Blake Bortal type deal like $18 million a year for 3 years and see if he would take it or not. Looking back now it would have been a heck of a deal for him vs. the million he is making with New Orleans, but he would have probably turned it down. Turned out the Bucs were better to move on with a QB who has thrown 36 TDs and 11 Interceptions vs. a 30/30 club member and president of the club seeing he is the only member.

  28. 2ruefan says:
    December 29, 2020 at 8:12 pm
    mikeyb says:
    December 29, 2020 at 7:32 pm

    These NFL teams will never learn. The huge contracts given to Wentz, Goff, Garappolo, Cousins, and Derek Carr have equated into nothing. None of them are elite QB’s and none of them are worth anywhere near the money they are being paid.
    Now, their teams are stuck with them, even though they’d all like to get rid of them and start over.

    ***********************
    Nice over-generalization dude…
    These are all VERY different circumstances, and not even remotely related.

    The only real “Bust” among them all is Wentz. He fell apart in every season, and he did not “will” the eagles to the playoffs. Everyone wanted to anoint that dude, and I NEVER saw it.

    *********************
    Really, Wentz is the bust? Not his biggest fan, BUT he was a legitimate MVP candidate in 2017, played well in 2018 and 2019. Also in 2019 when they made the playoffs with practice squad players, he was the FIRST QB IN HISTORY TO PASS FOR 4,000 YARDS AND HAVE 0 WIDE RECEIVERS HAVE 500+ YARDS. If that’s not carrying/willing your team to the playoffs I don’t know what is my friend.

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