Jared Goff Should Benefit from the Los Angeles Rams’ Blockbuster Trade

Feb 25, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; (Editor
Feb 25, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; (Editor /

Jared Goff could be a prime beneficiary from the Los Angeles Rams’ blockbuster trade, which shoots them up to the first overall pick in the draft.

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With the NFL Draft just a couple of weeks away, the Los Angeles Rams put a wrinkle in things by swinging a huge trade with the Tennessee Titans. The Titans traded away their number-one overall pick, which they earned by having the NFL’s worst record last season, as well as a fourth-round and sixth-round selection to the Rams for a king’s ransom of draft picks. The Titans received four of the Rams’ picks this year: the 15th pick in the first round, the 43rd and 45th picks in the second round, and the 76th pick in the third round. The Titans also received a first-round and third-round pick in 2017’s edition of the draft.

This deal changes the complexion of the first few picks of this year’s draft completely. Ole Miss tackle Laremy Tunsil was widely seen as the favorite to be picked by the Titans, as they already had the man they pegged as their franchise quarterback, former Oregon Duck Marcus Mariota. Now with two teams at the head of the draft order that have a need for that franchise-type quarterback, it’s entirely possible and highly likely that two quarterbacks will be off the draft board in the first two picks.

Former California Golden Bears‘ quarterback Jared Goff’s status as a top-10 pick was somewhat questionable prior to the trade, given the needs of the teams picking, but this deal could now cement Goff’s status as a top-two pick. The Rams and the Cleveland Browns, the team with the second selection, both need a quarterback, and Goff and North Dakota State’s Carson Wentz are likely the two men they will call.

By moving up to number one in the draft order, the Rams can address something that has been a big hole in their offense for a few years now: the quarterback position. Despite finishing with a 7-9 record, the passing attack was a huge, glaring hole on the Rams’ offense. They finished last in passing yards (2,805), passing touchdowns (11), passer rating (74.1), and were second-to-last with a 57.7 percent completion percentage.

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A quarterback coming into the Rams’ offense has a great luxury lining up behind him. Running back Todd Gurley, the 10th overall pick last year, exploded onto the scene after missing the first few weeks of the year recovering from a torn ACL suffered in his senior year at Georgia. In his first four starts, a stretch beginning in week four, Gurley rushed for 546 yards, and added another 140-yard game later in the year. His 1,106 rushing yards were good for third in the league last year.

Putting either Wentz or Goff into an offense with Gurley in the backfield could be just what the Rams need to take a step forward in an extremely tough NFC West. It could be enough to propel them to their first winning season since 2003 when combined with a strong defense on the other side of the ball.

With the second pick, the Browns are still, well, the Browns. Dysfunction and poor results have been the name of the game for the Browns for a long time, and that doesn’t seem to be changing any time soon. The Browns are in position to pick (another) quarterback, which would be their ninth taken in the draft since they re-entered the league in 1999, and would be the fifth taken in the first round. It’s been one big revolving door under center for the Browns (who will also have a new center after Pro Bowler Alex Mack walked in free agency) for a long time, and that, also, doesn’t seem to be changing just yet.

The Browns also have the newly-acquired Robert Griffin III on the roster, so a drafted quarterback wouldn’t necessarily just be handed the keys to the offense.

The Rams are said to be leaning towards picking Goff first overall, but they aren’t counting out the possibility of taking Wentz either. If Los Angeles does take Goff, he would the first Cal alum taken with the number one pick since Steve Bartkowski, who went to the Atlanta Falcons in 1975. He would be Cal’s sixth first-round quarterback, joining Craig Morton (fifth pick in 1965), Bartkowski, Rich Campbell (sixth in 1981), Kyle Boller (19th in 2003), and Aaron Rodgers (24th in 2005).

Next: Cal Bears Provide Lots of Receiver Options in Draft

Let’s not forget, however, there’s still two weeks until the draft. There’s still plenty of time for more trades to happen, and for more wrenches to be thrown into the gears of the draft. But for now, Goff’s draft status looks very good.