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A Familiar Position For Jared Goff

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  • A Familiar Position For Jared Goff

    Posted Jul 27, 2017
    Myles SimmonsRams Insider
    A trip to Jared Goff's hometown reveals a lot about the QB who starred at Marin Catholic and Cal and is now aiming for big things with the Rams.

    NOVATO, Calif. — When Jared Goff was a freshman at Cal, the Golden Bears finished 1-11.

    If that piece of information is familiar to you, it should be. As one of the widely heralded top quarterbacks of the 2016 draft class, Goff’s record was repeatedly dissected and scrutinized in the lead up to the Rams selecting him with the No. 1 overall pick.

    Despite the team struggles of that first college season, Goff helped put the program in a position to go 8-5 in his junior year, winning a bowl game for the first time since 2008. And in the process, Goff became one of the most prolific passers in Pac-12 history.

    The situations are not the same, but it’s easy to draw parallels between that freshman season and Goff’s first year in the NFL. Speaking with the quarterback and a few of those close to him in his hometown over a weekend in late June, it’s clear why they are all eager and optimistic as Goff’s second season gets underway.

    “I was always a quarterback since I was about 7 or 8 years old,” Jared says. “Always a quarterback.”

    The Rams No. 1 overall pick has been hosting a youth flag football tournament over the last two days at his alma mater, Marin Catholic, where he starred as the high school’s varsity signal-caller from 2010-2012. Jared led the program to a 39-4 record in that time, winning three Marin County Athletic League championships and one CIF North Coast Section title.

    As he said himself, Jared has been a quarterback long before he was torching high schools from all over the Bay Area. But always?

    “It’s kind of funny. He was never the biggest kid. He’s gotten to the point now where he can handle himself, but back then, he was lean,” Jared’s father, Jerry Goff, recalls. Jerry played Major League Baseball in the 90s as a catcher for the Montreal Expos, Pittsburgh Pirates, and Houston Astros. “So we walked up the first day of football practice, and sent him out there with the rest of the kids. And he got in the linemen line.”

    “Nobody knows — they’re seven years old, right?” Jerry laughs. “So he’s over there with the linemen and I’m like, ‘Man… I don’t want him to be a lineman.’ Because I had just played high school football and I knew his body wasn’t meant for that. So we had a little chat after and I said, ‘Hey, you’ve got to get out of that group and try this group.’ And that’s when he ended up doing what he’s doing now.”

    “He loved it,” Jared’s mother, Nancy Goff, says of her son playing quarterback. “He just took off and loved it from Day 1.”

    While quarterbacks don’t traditionally drop back much at that age, part of Jared’s love for the position came from his early ability to pass.

    “I was just throwing the ball further than everyone so that’s why I started it,” Jared says. “And then as I grew older, I kind of grew into the position and everything that kind of goes along with it. And it’s kind of shaped me a little bit.”

    Shaped him?

    “Just the way I carry myself. [Being a quarterback] gives you confidence, and you have to have confidence at the position,” Jared says. “Leadership, energy, and everything else has shaped into my personality.

    But if you ask his mom, Jared may have simply been innately suited to play what’s often described as the most difficult position in sports.

    “I think he’s a natural leader. He loves telling people what to do, orchestrating things — even not just in football, but when he gets friends together,” Nancy says. “He likes orchestrating and leading, and he’s good at it.”

    “He’s got a real strong sense of himself, a real strong sense of confidence,” she continues. “We get asked a lot that question — ‘Where does that come from?’ And I think the real explanation is the easiest: It’s just who he is.”

    By the time Jared reached Marin Catholic, he’d been playing football for years. He clearly had arm talent, but no one quite knew how he would fare at the high school level.

    Mazi Moayed has been Marin Catholic’s football coach since 2010, and remembers his first impression of Jared well.

    “Tall, skinny kid who wanted to play quarterback,” Moayed says. “You have a lot of guys with that type of frame, and everybody wants to play quarterback.”

    But there was something different about the way the ball would come off of Jared’s hand.

    “You watch him throw the football, and you’d be like, ‘Wow, that looked really easy.’ Like, you felt like you could do it,” Moayed says. “You could tell he was special then. And he had the tools and the gifts — just had to see, at that point, was he going to have the head and the heart for it?”

    Moayed and his staff learned Jared possessed both as he began his sophomore year.

    “You could see right away [that] he was mature, just a mature athlete,” Moayed says. “And his competitive toughness was pretty awesome. He would compete like crazy at practice.”

    Even though he was the starter, Jared wanted to be the scout-team quarterback, too. And so Moayed sent him out there in each practice as a sophomore, with Jared always trying to get the best of the first-team defense.

    “It was fun — it was a good rivalry. A lot of his best friends were on the other side of the football, so it made it that much sweeter,” Moayed says. “That stood out right away, though, his sophomore year, was wanting to even be the scout-team guy. And we let him. And I think it made him better because it was always good-on-good.”

    Growing up with a professional athlete as a father likely fostered that spirit in Jared.

    “He’s got a very competitive side. I mean, he and my husband, they’ll compete over ping pong to where it gets a little nasty sometimes,” Nancy says. “Neither of them can stand to lose.”

    But along with the intangibles, Jared’s skill-set allowed him to flourish.

    Moyaed says Jared had an “ability to stand in the pocket and [keep his] eyes downfield. It didn’t matter what was happening — he’d be willing to stand in there and take a hit. You saw that in high school all the time and that was the No. 1 thing recruiters noticed when they’d come through, is, ‘Wow, he stays in the pocket and his eyes are downfield the whole time.’”

    “He was pinpoint accurate and that was really helpful,” Moyaed adds. “It helped the average guys become a lot better, and the good guys become great because of how he was able to place the ball.”

    Even then, Jared was exhibiting qualities that would help him get selected at the top of the draft — including his on-field demeanor.

    “His calmness no matter the situation — he takes a hit, just playing the next play staying focused, and cool, and sort of calming the other guys down,” Moyaed says. “He has the energy to keep it fun and loose so he can be efficient.”

    That sense of calmness was another significant point of Jared’s evaluation when he was entering the NFL. He says it’s just a quality he thinks he’s always had.

    “I don’t know, I think it comes from trying to enjoy the game,” he says. “Trying to not make it more than it is, trying to have fun and don’t make the moment bigger than it is. It’s still just a game at the end of the day — a fun game we all play — and just try to enjoy it everyday.”

    “I think he has a way of calming himself and knowing it’s going to be OK,” Jerry says. “You want to succeed at whatever you do. But there’s going to be some failures. And for his ability to push those off and push to the next play, or the next game — whatever it may be — is a really nice way to be wired as a quarterback.”

    Whenever a high school player is putting up numbers like Jared — he threw 44 touchdowns as a junior — colleges are going to start giving him some attention. And so during that 2011 season, Jared started getting the sense that he had a future in football.

    “I knew my junior year I could do it,” Jared says. “My junior year, I had a pretty good year — a bunch of touchdowns and not many interceptions and we were really good. I had some pretty good receivers around me that year and that’s when I kind of knew I could do it, started getting some interest.”

    “Probably his junior year of high school where I knew, ‘You know, maybe he can play in college,’” Jerry says. “I’m like, ‘OK, he’s doing some things now that he has a chance to play in college. I don’t think he can for sure, because he’s still got to get better.’ And he kept getting better.”

    So college programs began to show interest, and eventually Jared was offered Washington State, Boise State, and a school just a half hour away from his hometown: University of California, Berkeley.

    “He had talked to a few other colleges, offers from a few others, and was still talking to a few others,” Nancy says. “And at one point he said to both Jerry and I, ‘I know I can’t do better than Cal. I know that’s where I want to go.’ And Jerry said, ‘Then just declare. Let’s do it.’ And so he did.”

    “It was close to home, that was part of it,” Jared says. “It was nice to be close to home but ultimately, it was the chance to compete in the Pac-12. Great school — if football didn’t work out, you get a great degree.”

    It was a choice that elicited plenty of family pride, as both Jerry and Nancy had attended Cal, too. Back then, Jerry not only excelled on the baseball field, but was also a punter for the football program.

    “We were so happy — I was so happy. It’s unreal, it really is unreal, as a mom who went to school there, to have your son then deciding that he’s going to play there. And, hopefully, be the starting quarterback at Cal,” Nancy says. “I watched Jerry play there. So to be back on that field, Memorial Stadium, with Jared starting was unreal.”

    “Yeah, selfishly it was great, because we could see every home game — we’re a half hour away,” Jerry says. “And then we were able to go on the road, too, because it wasn’t that big of a deal being on the West Coast. It meant a lot, in terms of just his legacy. He’s a second generation Cal guy, which is good.”

    There were, however, a couple of factors that could have complicated Goff’s ascent. The first, was that Cal wanted Jared to enroll in the spring of 2013 so he could participate in spring practices. That meant the quarterback would have to graduate Marin Catholic early, which wasn’t something normally done.

    “We got on the phone with Marin Catholic and said, ‘What do we need to do?’” Nancy says. “He had to take a few summer school classes. He had to do a few things because Marin Catholic has some other requirements. And they didn’t waive any of them — he had to finish the way everyone else finishes, but within three-and-a-half years. So we went online, he took some classes and he got it done.”

    “That was just kind of new, believe it or not, in 2013,” Jerry says. “A lot of kids hadn’t been doing that. It started maybe in 2012 with a few kids. That’s your only chance to play as a freshman at the quarterback position — is to get out of high school a semester early. And he felt, you know, he’s like, ‘I want to do this. I want to get this done.’”

    The opportunity to start as a freshman was a significant factor for why Jared wanted to graduate in that time frame. In a way, it’s an example of his highly competitive nature.

    “I could’ve played baseball and still enjoyed my spring semester [in high school],” Jared says. “But it was the fact that I knew, if I’m sitting in class here, and it’s second semester senior year — you know how it goes. It’s like every class is kind of a joke towards the end. So [I pictured] sitting there and they’re doing practice across the bridge, and they don’t have a quarterback, and I’m like, ‘What am I doing here?’ I knew I didn’t want to be in that situation. So that’s why I went.”

    “I obviously did miss my friends a little bit but there were times where they would come over and see me at Cal or I’d go back home on weekends all the time. It really wasn’t too bad, because I was so close,” Jared adds. “But that was the best decision I’ve ever made, going there early.”

    “I think, obviously, when you look back on it, that could be why he is where he is now,” Jerry says. “If he doesn’t go there [early], he probably doesn’t start, and who knows? Things happen for a reason, and it was a good call on his part wanting to do that.”

    The other complicating factor: Cal relieved head coach Jeff Tedford of his duties after the 2012 season, meaning Jared would walk into an unfamiliar situation with a coach who hadn’t recruited him. But even though there were potential opportunities to go elsewhere, Jared never wavered in where he wanted to be.

    “I committed to the school,” he says. “I love coach Tedford, I thought he was great, I loved his whole staff. But I was committed to Cal as a school and as the institution it is.”

    “I think he’s an ‘all-in’ type of guy with whatever he does — very loyal guy,” Moayed says of Jared. “And I think after he’d been committed that long, his heart, mind, and soul was into Cal. In his mind and heart, he had already played there, practiced there, walked-through there. He was already there.”

    In some ways, the coaching change may have worked to Jared’s advantage. Cal hired Sonny Dykes and he brought with him an air-raid offense that bore a closer resemblance to what Moayed ran at Marin Catholic.

    “With coach Tedford’s scheme, although very successful, it’s hard to come in and learn his system right away in one spring,” Moayed says. “You’re better off [red] shirting to grow in that offensive system.”

    Under Dykes, Jared effectively learned the new offensive system and seized the starting role as a true freshman in August.

    “I went in there not really knowing what was gonna happen, but just trying to do my best. And through probably a few weeks of early spring training, I thought, ‘Man, I could do this. I feel like I’m better than all these guys and I feel like I could do it,’” Jared says. “And I worked, and worked, and worked all the way through the summer and worked hard all the way through training camp and was named the starter about two weeks before the first game.”

    Though he earned the starting role and set a number of passing records in 2013, Goff’s first college season was tough.

    “It was rough, there’s no doubt about that. He lost four games throughout his whole high school career, and he loses 11,” Jerry says. “And not only did they lose, they got rolled.”

    It was the program’s worst record in history, with Cal’s only win coming Week 2 against Portland State.

    Nevertheless, there were positives. Two of those new Cal records were yards passing (3,508) and completions (320) — both of which he’d later break. And it was during that year that Jared and those around him began to realize what his ceiling might be.

    “When I played my freshman year, we were terrible but I was still throwing it around pretty good, and completing some balls, and completing some big plays,” Jared says. “So I was like, ‘Alright, I can do it.’”

    “Even through that 1-11 season, you would hear a lot of bright things about Jared,” Nancy says. “Especially on TV by the commentators about his pocket presence, his arm, his quick feet — things that they talk about when players can go on, attributes that you kind of need to have to go on. Not that they won that often, but Jared’s physical attributes. So I think it was right his freshman year when we started hearing people talk about it on TV, and I was like, ‘Hmm, OK, this could happen for him.’”

    Part of that was Jared’s attitude. Even though his freshman season went south quickly, he stayed even keel.

    “He hung in there and kept it together,” Jerry says. “He could’ve fell apart real easily — because there was another guy there who was highly recruited who got there before him. He could’ve [started] looking over his shoulder — never ever flinched the whole time.”

    “To see him perform consistently at the level he was, the way he was throwing the ball, that, to me, said a lot,” Moayed says. “Just to keep throwing for all the yards that he did even though the team was struggling the way that it was. And to keep your head about you to be executing efficiently, and re-set every week. When you have a fresh approach, you’ve got to be really tough minded to do that. And after that year, I was like, ‘Hey, it’s only going to get better from here. It’s not going to be any worse.’”

    But in order to make that happen, Jared had plenty to overcome. He had the support of his coaches and teammates, but also the confidence in himself to put the 1-11 season behind him and take Cal football in the right direction.

    “I think there were a lot of things we went through and had to learn from and ultimately, it was changing the culture, and changing the expectation in the building,” Jared says. “And I was a part of that but I wasn’t the only part of that — there were a bunch of guys there with me that were pulling their weight as well. And I’m proud to say I was a part of it but by no means was I the only person behind that. It was a group effort.”

    “No team has ever gone 1-11 and then to a bowl game the next year in college football. And they could’ve done that. There were a couple of games that they probably could have won [but] didn’t,” Jerry says. “They ended up 5-8, and then yeah, they moved on.

    “So I think the fans in L.A., just to push this forward a little bit, are going to see that, too, out of this kid,” Jerry continues. “Being that he played seven games and didn’t win any of them — that’s no secret — you guys, hang with this guy. He’s going to be alright.”

    As Jerry says, the similarities between Jared’s freshman year at Cal and his rookie season in the NFL are plainly apparent. After L.A. traded up to No. 1 overall to select him, Jared started seven games, but the Rams finished the year 4-12. And completing just 55 percent of his passes for 1,089 yards with five touchdowns and seven interceptions was not an ideal first year by any stretch.

    “I learned a lot,” Jared says. “I think I learned, ultimately, that winning in this league is not easy and doesn’t come without sacrifice. There’s a lot of things that you need to lay on the line a little bit to get what you want. And, ultimately, that is winning. And I think I learned that — I think our whole team learned that.”

    “Definitely want to use some of the things I did learn last year, though, to continue to move myself forward and our team.”

    Those close to Jared all have a strong sense that the quarterback will have a much improved 2017. They say he’s proven he has the ability to do it through his resolve and resiliency.

    “His track record shows it — he gets better every year,” Jerry says. “Every year, no matter what he does, at whatever level he plays, he gets better. And he’s going to get better, and get better, and get better. He’s not going to stay static — that’s not in his DNA.”

    “I think the biggest thing is going to be taking that 1-11 year and using that to his advantage, just sort of being himself and staying the course,” Moayed says. “He’s been playing football all his life and I always hear these different things on interviews or write ups, and sometimes it’s like they’re talking about a guy like he’s never played football before, you know? It’s sort of funny. But there’s a lot of elements involved. And I think he’s going to bounce back and have a great year coming up with the Rams.”

    “I think things are on the rise there. I think it’s kind of similar to Cal, where it’s kind of a shift in culture, new coach, they’re kind of turning some things around,” Nancy says. “And I think it’s going to get better just like Cal — I really do. I have a lot of confidence. Jared, obviously, has a lot of confidence. And I think his teammates do. I mean, you can feel it.”

    Wide receiver Nelson Spruce — who helped out at Jared’s camp in June — says he’s noticed a difference not just within the dynamic of the team, but also with the way his quarterback handled the offseason program.

    “I just think that leadership role that he’s taken is where I’ve seen the most growth,” Spruce says. “He knows he’s going to be the guy Day 1, and he’s kind of taken the position as the leader of our offense, and the leader of our team. And I think a lot of that has to do with the year that he had, and seeing what goes into an NFL season, and what it takes to lead an NFL team. And I think on the field as well, he’s kind of taken some big strides.

    “Being the No. 1 overall pick, and coming in [last year] as a quarterback in that situation — I couldn’t imagine the pressure,” Spruce adds. “Anyone in that situation is going to have their speed bumps. But I think what he did was learn from that. That’s one thing I’ve noticed he does well — he won’t repeat the same mistakes. So I think that he’s kind of taken all the lessons he’s learned from the past year. We did have a lot of negative moments last year, and I think he learned from all those. And he’s doing his best to make sure we don’t repeat them.”

    Part of that certainly has to do with Los Angeles’ new staff, led by head coach Sean McVay. Between McVay, offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur, and quarterbacks coach Greg Olson, Jared has plenty of support to help guide him to a much more successful 2017. But it’s the environment McVay implemented in and around the building that Jared feels can make an even bigger impact.

    “I think what coach McVay has done so far with the new culture he’s instilled and the new expectations and all that stuff is exactly on line with what we need,” Jared adds. “And I’m really excited about what we’ve got working now.”

    Jared has the skills. He has the intangibles. He feels he has the right teammates and coaches around him. He has the experience.

    That’s why when you ask him what to expect from the Rams this upcoming season, he eagerly replies, “A lot more.”

    “It’s turning — you can feel it in OTAs, you can feel it in minicamp. The tide is turning,” Jared says. “And, again, I think it starts with coach McVay and everything he’s instilled. Just the expectation level is much higher this year — much higher. I know it’s higher on myself. And I know I’m ready to go.”

Related Topics


  • Nick
    Goff Impressing Coaches with Work Ethic, Showing Early Progress
    by Nick
    Goff Impressing Coaches with Work Ethic, Showing Early Progress
    Posted May 25, 2016
    Myles Simmons
    Rams Insider

    With the Rams beginning OTAs next week, No. 1 overall pick Jared Goff will be on the field squaring off against a defense for the first time in practice. Because players are not in pads, the organized team activities are essentially a period of continued learning. And the coaches who work closely with Los Angeles’ newest quarterback — offensive coordinator Rob Boras and quarterbacks coach Chris Weinke — are looking forward to seeing Goff progress on the field.

    When the organization made the decision to trade for the first pick, it was clear there was a general consensus one quarterback appeared a cut above the rest. According to Weinke, Goff’s film was simply outstanding.

    “The guy is just a natural passer of the football. You can tell he’s a natural athlete,” the QB coach said. “He was probably the smoothest guy that I’ve evaluated in a long time, as it relates to pocket awareness and pocket presence.

    “Time after time, you’ve seen him make big plays,” Weinke continued. “And the guy made some ‘wow’ throws that not a lot of college guys have made — or that I’ve ever seen on film. You really put all those variables together, and he was a guy who kind of rose to the top and we felt like would be a good fit here in Los Angeles.”

    But it wasn’t just about the throws. The fact that Goff helped bring Cal from an 11-loss team his freshman year to winning the program’s first bowl game since 2008 speaks volumes about his leadership ability.

    “Collectively, you look at his body of work and what he did as a young kid going into Cal … not only physically, but mentally what he was able to accomplish, and truly be the leader of that football team,” Weinke said, adding to “go from 1-11 to going to a bowl game and winning is important, as it relates to the quarterback position and leadership ability.”

    According to Boras, Goff has shown those qualities even in the short time he’s been a Ram.

    “Watching him with the other rookies and just the leadership, and getting those guys out involved — it’s all the things that you’d hope for, and you heard,” Boras said. “But now to see it in person, it’s truly exciting.”

    Goff’s strong work ethic has been well documented, but witnessing it in person has nevertheless been noteworthy for Boras and Weinke.

    “The thing that’s really impressed me with Jared has just been his commitment to the classroom and his commitment to learn,” Boras said. “He’s been in there early for every meeting — I don’t mean five-minutes early. The meeting is supposed to start at 8:30, he’s trying to roll in and he’s always working.”

    “The good thing about Jared is that he’s a cerebral kid,” Weinke said. “He’s very smart. He can absorb the information. In our research and our due diligence on...
    -05-27-2016, 01:54 PM
  • Nick
    An Interview with Jared Goff
    by Nick
    'You Want to Compete for a World Title. That's the Next Step.' — An Interview with Jared Goff
    Friday, Jul 20, 2018 12:00 PM
    Myles Simmons

    June 16 is a cool, grey day in Berkeley, California.

    The atmosphere almost feels like a day in the fall, where thousands of fans file into California Memorial Stadium to watch the Golden Bears.

    But on this day, it’s hundreds of kids on the field for a flag football tournament.

    It’s the second year in a row the Rams quarterback Jared Goff has hosted his Summer Classic. Goff likes that the kids make memories competing rather than just doing drills they may forget in a couple days.

    Last year, Goff held the camp at Marin Catholic High School — his Alma Mater across the Bay. Things have been upscaled for 2018, with nearly 300 kids participating in the festivities at this much bigger venue.

    Goff arrives with friend and teammate Tyler Higbee just before the first division of kids begin the tournament. He takes a look at the merchandise for sale, joking that maybe he shouldn’t be wearing a hat and shirt sporting his own name. But he likes how they look, complimenting the people running the camp on how the gear turned out.

    During a break in the action, Goff takes Higbee on a tour of the football facility — conveniently located at the stadium. It’s been about two years since he last walked on these grounds, he says. He points out the things that mean the most to him, particularly the trophy from the Armed Forces Bowl. He threw six touchdowns in that game. It was his last game as a Golden Bear before declaring for the 2016 NFL Draft.

    Eventually, Goff takes the touring party to the University Club, located on the top level of the stadium. There’s an outside patio, which Goff says probably sports the best view of the Bay.

    “You can see Oakland, San Francisco, Alcatraz, the Golden Gate Bridge, and my hometown from up here,” Goff says, pointing out where he grew up in Novato.

    It’s back in the University Club where Goff sits down for a wide-ranging interview about his college days, his thoughts on Los Angeles’ 2017 season, and what he sees as the next step for the club in 2018.

    Portions of this interview may be seen in Episode 9 of ‘Behind the Grind’ on Facebook Watch. It has been lightly edited for length and clarity.

    Myles Simmons: What does doing this camp mean to you?

    Jared Goff: Yeah, this camp is very cool to me. It’s obviously back home, where I’m from, and being at Cal where I went to school. And having all these kids out here, and being able to play on the field, and Cal being gracious enough to let us do all this has been awesome.

    MS: You had the camp at your high school last year, Marin Catholic. How do you feel now about bringing it to where you went to college?

    JG: Yeah, so we did it at my high...
    -07-22-2018, 05:55 AM
  • RockinRam
    LA Rams Post-Practice Transcript, November 15th
    by RockinRam
    Los Angeles Rams Head Coach Jeff Fisher

    (Opening remarks)

    “I sat down with both (QB) Case (Keenum) and (QB) Jared (Goff) this morning, and informed them of the move. First I want to say, Case was voted a captain when the preseason was over, and he’s still a captain. His leadership, and his enthusiasm, and his commitment, and everything – you can’t ask for anything more out of somebody. It’s the same thing that I shared with the team today, as far as Case’s job and what’s he’s done, the difficulties we’ve had offensively, which were not necessarily his fault, but it’s time. It’s time to move on. I felt in my heart – I was getting closer and closer over the last couple of weeks. I felt like this was the best time to go ahead and turn the keys over to Jared. We’re excited for him. He had a good day today. He’s into the plan, he’s really excited. The position is not easy to play, as we’ve seen around the league. A lot of good quarterbacks took their lumps last weekend, but we got confidence in him, as the offense does. We’ll get him prepared to play. The option was to wait until Sunday, but that’s not a good option. It’s not fair to you guys, it’s not fair to him. It’s out there, he’s our starter, we’re moving forward.

    “As far a (DE) Rob’s (Quinn) situation is concerned, he’s here. He’s doing well, we got good results back. It’ll be a day-to-day thing with Rob, as far as getting back on the field. That will be the case with a couple of other guys. I’ll have an injury report for you guys on Friday. I don’t want to say it’s a new era, it’s a new start, but in a lot of way, it is. Jared Goff is going to be under center this week, at home, against a really good defensive team in the Miami Dolphins. So, big challenge ahead.”

    (On his biggest concern regarding QB Jared Goff and this game)

    “I don’t go into games having concerns. I go into games having expectations, and the expectation is he’s going to run the offense. We’re not scaling the offense down. We’ve game planned. I’ve shared my decision with the staff early yesterday, so they would have time as the game plan continues to go in, and we’ve done so. I don’t have any concerns about Jared. I just have high expectations for him.”

    (On if this was a collaborative decision)

    “No, they’re all behind me as far as decisions are concerned. It was my decision. I did inform (Owner/Chairman) Stan (Kroenke) for obvious reasons. I told him this is here I wanted to go, and the direction I wanted to go, and we’re going that way. It’s an exciting time right now. The record aside, we’re expecting him to play well and win games for us.”

    (On what ultimately swayed him in making the decision)

    “It was just Jared’s progress, and the progression week, after week, after week. Preparing to be a two, preparing to be a play away from going in. When he got the reps over the last three or four weeks, they were...
    -11-15-2016, 07:17 PM
  • r8rh8rmike
    'I'm ready to get this thing going': Jared Goff opens up about the Rams' future
    by r8rh8rmike
    'I'm ready to get this thing going': Jared Goff opens up about the Rams' future

    Andrew Lawrence
    Friday January 27th, 2017

    Last season was a real character-builder for Jared Goff. Yes, the former Cal quarterback was selected with the first pick in the 2016 NFL draft. But the Rams, the team that took him, were in transition. After a cross-country move from St. Louis to Los Angeles, the organization slogged to a 4–12 record and fired coach Jeff Fisher with three games remaining. Goff didn’t start until Week 11 and made an uneven impression when he did, completing a little more than 50% of his passes for 1,089 yards, five touchdowns and seven interceptions—numbers that compared unfavorably with a rookie QB cohort that included Dallas’s Dak Prescott (67.8% completion rate through 16 starts) and Philly’s Carson Wentz (62.4% through 16 starts).

    So it figures that when caught up with the Rams QB1 while he was in L.A. signing trading cards for Panini, Goff would look not to the past but to a future when his early adversities and the Rams’ coaching staff purge will look minor in hindsight. He also had a few thoughts on the Super Bowl QBs, his diet and his new neighbors, the Chargers, in this Q&A, which has been condensed and edited.

    Andrew Lawrence: They tell us you will be attending another Panini-sponsored event after this, the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl Fanfest. And there you’ll be sharing your experience transitioning into the league with other rookies. What is it that you know now that you wish you knew coming out of college?

    Jared Goff: I guess to understand that it’s a big deal, but not to put so much pressure on myself, that somebody was going to take me regardless. There were times where I stayed up at night wondering.

    AL: How will this off-season be different from ’16 now that both you and the Rams are more established?

    JG: It’ll be big. It’ll be huge for us to have an off-season here and not have everyone moving around. We moved to about four different locations last year. It’ll be nice to be in one place, focus and have a routine.

    AL: Which Hard Knocks storyline was the last to die: William Hayes’s obsession with mermaids and dinosaurs, or you not knowing which directions the sun rises and sets?

    JG: [Laughs] They’re both alive and well. I hear about the sun thing quite often. That was so overblown. Hard Knocks is good. Hard Knocks is fun. But there are a lot of things that they like to script a little bit. And making fun of the rookie is definitely one of those things.

    AL: So that moment with you in the helicopter—it was ... tweaked? Was it more that you were confused about the sun’s direction relative to where you were in the air?

    JG: Exactly. It was made into a bigger deal than it should’ve been. But it was funny. I’ve had some fun with it.

    AL: Sean McVay is your new head coach. What do you...
    -01-27-2017, 03:43 PM
  • MauiRam
    The California Cool of Jared Goff
    by MauiRam
    In the midst of a wild three-year career arc that has taken him from rookie bust to MVP candidate, the Rams quarterback has learned to enjoy the ride. How far can his surge lift L.A.?

    Not long ago, the keepers of football's sacred texts detected a tragic flaw. The college game was spreading out and speeding up. It had become too simple, too bloodless -- and the repercussions could cripple the NFL. What they were witnessing was an insult to the thousands of men who sacrificed their bodies and brains on the game's altar. A quarterback standing 15 feet behind the center, catching a snap and throwing the ball to a receiver before the defense could even react? This was an act of pure expedience, a shortcut in a sport that does not abide them. Who was left to teach a young quarterback to nudge up close to the center, put his hands in another man's haunch and take a proper snap? A quarterback should be close enough to feel fear, and to smell a nose guard's rancid breath, and the suggestion that these gimmicky offenses would work in the NFL -- against grown-ass men, they thundered -- was an affront to the legacies of every great American who ever took the time to teach a man the seven-step drop.

    But one by one, the thundering old men were replaced by younger men who identified an opportunity within the perceived decay, and the sacred texts began to be rewritten. These new men, unburdened by the psychic lore of Joe Namath's creaky knees or Joe Montana's jigsaw-puzzle spine or Y.A. Tittle's bleeding forehead, took the obvious skills of the spread quarterbacks and set them loose against NFL defenses.

    And now what is this we have before us -- fun? Yes, a league that can't define a catch without seven pages of footnotes is being overrun by this most endangered concept. Fun destroys the myth that everything must be difficult and exhausting and earned. Fun puts the game's inherent martiality at risk. Turns out you can make your way down the field faster, more efficiently and far more often by standing back there and finding the receiver most open.

    It's starting to feel like a revolution, and every revolution needs a frontman. Rams quarterback Jared Goff, under the progressive vision of head coach Sean McVay, is the leader of one of the NFL's most dynamic offenses. Just two years after 2016's top pick suffered through the turgid, sclerotic final days of the crumbling Jeff Fisher empire -- losing all seven of his rookie starts -- Goff is an ascendant star, an MVP candidate, a player who symbolizes the promise of the new over the stubbornness of the old.

    "It's funny that the spread quarterback was seen as such a scary thing going into every draft," Goff says. "I played in the spread, Patrick Mahomes played in the spread, Deshaun Watson, Mitchell Trubisky -- the NFL is so stuck in its ways sometimes. If you don't innovate and adapt, you're going to be left...
    -11-15-2018, 12:25 AM