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Despite Up-and-Down Night, Goff Feels Ready for Regular Season

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  • Despite Up-and-Down Night, Goff Feels Ready for Regular Season

    Despite Up-and-Down Night, Goff Feels Ready for Regular Season
    Posted 8 hours ago
    Myles Simmons
    Rams Insider

    Though head coach Sean McVay held many starters out of Saturday night’s matchup against the Chargers — including running back Todd Gurley — second-year quarterback Jared Goff played the Rams’ first three drives.

    The opening possession started well. Goff hit wide receiver Robert Woods with a 16-yard pass on the right side. Then Goff maneuvered well in the pocket, evading a few defenders before making an outlet pass to Malcolm Brown in the flat, which the running back took 22 yards down the field. A defensive pass interference foul put the Rams in the red zone, where the club looked poised to tie the game at seven.

    But the Rams wouldn’t cash in. On 3rd-and-2 from the visitors’ eight-yard line, Chargers defensive end Joey Bosa came in from Goff’s right and strip-sacked the quarterback. Outside linebacker Melvin Ingram picked up the loose ball and returned it 76 yards for a touchdown.

    “We have to do a good job of protecting, but we also have to be ready to step up, hold on to the football,” McVay said. “And certainly we talk about the importance of turnovers, and we have to do a better job, collectively, taking care of it.”

    Then on the third play of the Rams’ ensuing drive, Goff attempted a deep ball to wide receiver Sammy Watkins on the left. But the quarterback overshot the wideout and the pass landed in the hands of cornerback Jason Verrett for an interception.

    “I just came off it a little bit. I can’t do that. I can’t make that throw. Just a bad throw,” Goff said. “I felt someone coming down my throat a little bit and I have to stand in there and throw it.”

    Goff played one more another series that ended in a field goal — a possession where he mostly handed off and attempted only two passes. He ended his night 5-of-8 passing for 56 yards with the two turnovers.

    “I think when you look at the sample size, those are the two plays that everybody will talk about,” McVay said. “Over the course of a full game, you get a chance to really redeem yourself a little bit more than he did, just based on the amount of plays that he played. But there were some good things. He made a great off-schedule play where he finds Malcolm Brown on the wide route and ends up going for a big gain, so there are some positives.”

    “It’s all good stuff to learn from,” Goff said. “I think at the end of the day, it’s good to have this stuff happen in the preseason and hopefully it can be avoided in the regular season.”

    Even though there were so many starters who either did not dress or did not play, Goff said the first drive was evidence that the mood was no different to start.

    “We moved the ball right down the field on them on that first drive, just like we had the previous couple of games on the first drives, moved it down the field,” Goff said. “Felt good and then ultimately snowballed there on us early — but no, I don’t think so.”

    McVay said no final decisions have been made regarding playing time for Thursday’s game at Green Bay. But it appears more likely than not Goff will not appear against the Packers, particularly given how many starters did not dress on Saturday. If that’s the case, Goff said he feels like he got what he needed out of his preseason appearances.

    “I would’ve like to have finished the day on a little bit of a better note, but I think in all three games as a whole I feel like I did a good job and feel like I got a lot out of it — got some good work and some good situational stuff,” he said.

    “He got a chance to play 35 snaps against Oakland where you can really get into a real rhythm,” McVay said. “It’s going to be very important for us to maximize practice if that’s the direction where we go, where he doesn’t play against Green Bay next week."

    Goff felt similarly when asked if he feels the offense as a unit is ready to go heading into the regular season.

    “No doubt, I think so,” Goff said. “I know it’s not the same as a game, but we do so much situational stuff in practice and so much replicating game stuff, that we are in that rhythm and that feel. Especially with Todd, and me being in my second year now, I [have] a great feel with him. All the receivers I’ve been able to work with all the way [from] OTAs up until now — we feel good.”

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  • Nick
    How good, or bad, will Jared Goff be in Year 2? It's anybody's guess
    by Nick
    How good, or bad, will Jared Goff be in Year 2? It's anybody's guess
    2:09 PM ET
    Alden Gonzalez
    ESPN Staff Writer

    THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. -- Indianapolis Colts coach Chuck Pagano witnessed the proverbial "Year 2 Leap" firsthand with Andrew Luck, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2012 draft. The game started to slow down; third-down blitz packages and safety rotations became easier to pick up.

    By the end of it, Luck had cut his interceptions in half over the course of his second NFL season, his quarterback rating jumping from 76.5 to 87.0 from 2012 to 2013.

    And that brings us to Jared Goff, a downright mystery in the build-up to the 2017 regular season.

    Goff should be better as a second-year player, but by how much?

    The Los Angeles Rams knew he needed work when they made him the No. 1 overall pick in 2016, but they probably didn't anticipate him needing that much. Goff wasn't named the starter until Week 11, then lost all seven of his starts and finished with a Total QBR of 22.2, the lowest among quarterbacks who played in at least five games.

    But that was under dire circumstances. His offensive line was bad, his running game nonexistent, his receivers inferior and his coaching staff generally lacking in experience with his position. Now Goff is in a system that has proven to get the most out of quarterbacks, while operating behind an improved offensive line and throwing to a deeper, more talented group of receivers. And it's hard to really know what to expect.

    Asked in what ways he believes he is better since the end of his rookie season, Goff said: "I think just understanding the intent of stuff that we do and understanding what the defense is trying to do and what the intent of their calls are, and different ways to attack it. With that, the game just begins to slow down a little bit. I think that's what you ultimately feel. I felt it from Year 1 to Year 2. At every level you're at, you get that slowdown effect a little bit from those two years. And I think it continues to slow down as time goes on."

    The Rams have done their best not to put too much pressure on Goff, at least publicly. First-year head coach Sean McVay, who worked wonders with Kirk Cousins in Washington, has talked mostly about the need for Goff to limit turnovers and distribute the ball in an effort to open holes for his star running back, Todd Gurley, who didn't see many holes last season.

    The expectations remain basic.

    "We expect him to make good decisions, throw with accuracy and rhythm," McVay said. "If he does that, then I think he'll give himself a chance to play good football for us."

    Goff is at a point in his career where he will frequently flash his potential and also make critical mistakes, reminding you that he is still only 22 years old. He threw six interceptions during a three-day...
    -09-07-2017, 01:31 PM
  • Nick
    Bonsignore: The ‘perfect throw’ that showed how much progress Jared Goff has made
    by Nick
    The ‘perfect throw’ that showed how much progress Jared Goff has made
    By Vincent Bonsignore Aug 7, 2019 5

    NAPA, Calif. — On a day when Jared Goff shredded the Oakland Raiders in the first of two joint practices, the Rams quarterback’s very best play wasn’t scripted, programmed or relayed to him. And it wasn’t part of Sean McVay’s deep and creative play call sheet.

    In fact, the situation called for Goff to go off script and tap into his footwork, vision and improvisational skills to create a big play when it appeared there was no play available.

    That area of Goff’s game has been knocked by critics over his first three seasons. It’s the source of the backhanded compliment often paid to him as a “system quarterback” who is capable of carrying out orders when the pocket is clean and everything is perfectly flowing on schedule. However, the unsaid implication of that label is that Goff is much more compromised the second things go awry and he has to become a playmaker.

    It’s not an entirely unfounded complaint; it’s just a bit overplayed. In a league in which quarterbacking under duress is a way of life, Goff has stacked up the necessary numbers and victories to undisputedly solidify his place among the elite quarterbacks in the game.

    He will never be Patrick Mahomes when it comes to using athletic ability and one of the great throwing arms in all of football to make Houdini-like plays. But Goff’s precise footwork, feel for a pocket and ability to keep his eyes focused downfield — even on the move — allow him to make things happen when he has to make a play.

    Three years into his partnership with McVay, Goff’s command of the offense is fueling the rising confidence in that part of his game. So far in training camp, he is taking more chances. And instead of simply throwing the ball away or taking a sack when under pressure, Goff has been a bit more daring in being a playmaker.

    “It just continues to keep growing like I always talk about,” he said. “I can’t specifically say anything in particular, but just me and Sean continue to get on the same page, I think it’s continuing to grow. And then, just my understanding of everything will always continue to grow with Sean as well.”

    Which brings us back to the play Goff made in Wednesday’s practice with the Raiders that quickly turned into a highlight reel for the 24-year-old.

    Maybe it was the fact that his parents were in attendance. Or perhaps it was the comfort of being home in the Bay Area. Whatever the reason, the former Cal star had his strongest day of training camp.

    In a spectacular 11-on-11 red zone period, Goff came up with multiple scoring throws, the best of which was the laser beam that split two Raiders defensive backs for a touchdown pass to tight end Gerald Everett in the back of the end zone. With so much going into the play, not the least of which was the mutual...
    -08-08-2019, 02:06 PM
  • Nick
    Rams quarterback Jared Goff suffers rough preseason home game
    by Nick
    Rams quarterback Jared Goff suffers rough preseason home game
    By Rich Hammond, [email protected],, @Rich_Hammond on Twitter
    POSTED: 08/26/17, 10:20 PM PDT | UPDATED: 3 HRS AGO 0 COMMENTS

    LOS ANGELES >> A sideline completion, and an “ooh” from the crowd. Alert movement in the pocket, and a 22-yard dump-off, and an “aah.” Jared Goff had two brilliant minutes on Saturday.

    The rest was eye-averting stuff. It’s unfair to entirely blame Goff for how quickly, and dramatically, things spiraled against the Chargers at the Coliseum. But in what likely was Goff’s preseason finale -- a 21-19 Chargers victory -- Goff and his coaches certainly hoped for a more-positive send-off, and instead got stuff that was tough to watch.

    “There were obviously a couple (throws) I’d like to have back,” Goff said. “It’s all good stuff to learn from. At the end of the day, you’d rather have it happen in the preseason.”

    Goff, in his first series, marched the Rams to the Chargers’ 8-yard line, but then he suffered a didn’t-see-him sack from the Chargers’ Joey Bosa and fumbled, which led to a 76-yard touchdown return and a 14-0 Chargers lead. Bosa charged in, unhindered, from the right side of the Rams’ offensive line.

    Given an immediate chance to rebound on the next series, Goff got flattened again, but not before he lofted a pass directly to Chargers cornerback Jason Verrett for an interception.

    Receiver Sammy Watkins looked around after the play, seemingly indicating that he and Goff had suffered some miscommunication, but Goff said the mistake belonged to him and that he didn’t handle the pass rush well enough.

    “I felt someone coming,” Goff said, “and I have to stand in there.”

    After the interception, Coach Sean McVay apparently had seen enough. Goff stayed in but, on his next series, the Rams ran the ball nine consecutive times. When the Rams finally risked a pass attempt, Goff got hit hard again but managed a 7-yard completion to Robert Woods.

    Finally, McVay had seen enough, and backup Sean Mannion entered in the middle of the second quarter. Goff finished 5 of 8 for 56 yards, and what to make of that?

    A Goff optimistic would note the offensive-line breakdown on the Bosa sack, and the possible miscommunication with Watkins, a new teammate, and also note that Goff preceded those turnovers with two impressive completions. Goff hit Woods for a sharp sideline completion and then, two plays later, avoided major pocket pressure, stepped up and found Malcolm Brown for a 22-yard completion.

    Goff also was coming off a universally praised effort a week earlier about Oakland, but the fact is the Rams wanted to see consistency and some momentum, and they took a step back.

    “He has done a lot of good things (in the preseason) and he has improved a lot,” McVay said.

    Goff (and the rest of the Rams’ offensive...
    -08-27-2017, 07:06 AM
  • Nick
    Bonsignore: Here’s why Year 2 should look much better for Rams quarterback Jared Goff
    by Nick
    Bonsignore: Here’s why Year 2 should look much better for Rams quarterback Jared Goff
    By VINCENT BONSIGNORE | [email protected] | Daily News
    May 25, 2017 at 3:39 pm

    As observations go, it probably falls more into the can’t-be-seen-without-a-microscope category. But the most astute scientists will tell you items unable to be detected by the human eye are sometimes the most critical, so the relatively casual critique Robert Woods made about Jared Goff might foretell something more significant.

    Woods, the Rams’ free agent wide receiver pickup, and Goff, the second-year quarterback on whom so much of their future success depends, have been consistent workout partners almost since the moment Woods signed last March. Woods might be only 25, but the four NFL seasons he has accrued involved five starting quarterbacks. And that’s four too many, given the timing, chemistry and comfort level required for quarterbacks and wide receivers to prosper together.

    The former USC star would like nothing better than to develop a long, monogamous working relationship with Goff over the next few years, although that is largely dependent on Goff fulfilling the promise and potential the Rams envisioned upon drafting him first overall in 2016.

    And as the early stage of their partnership evolves, Woods is on the lookout for evidence to support that conclusion.

    A small sample of which was recently presented

    A week ago, playing against a certain defensive look in practice, Goff misfired on a throw to Woods. The two hashed it out in conversation and conferred about it in the classroom. And when faced with the same defensive package against the same play this week during a Rams’ Organized Team Activity practice, the result was decidedly different.

    “This time he threw a perfect pass,” said Woods, who seemed hardly surprised by the manner in which Goff made the adjustment or the pristine throw he delivered.

    These are traits Woods has already recognized in Goff during their short time together.

    “Work ethic, arm and accuracy,” Woods said, describing Goff. “You see him coming out here, always working, first to answer the question in the meeting rooms. He’s always listening. Always asking questions.”

    That isn’t to suggest Goff will make the leap from the struggling rookie we saw in 2016 to All-Pro in 2017. Or that long-term success is guaranteed for the former Cal star. But given the natural progression from Year 1 to Year 2, the rebuilt infrastructure and support system the Rams have supplied Goff with this offseason and the more certain and confident demeanor he has presented so far during OTAs, there’s compelling reason to believe the 22-year-old will take a positive step forward this year.

    “I think he’s done a nice job just getting better every single day,” said Sean McVay, the young coach with whom the Rams have entrusted...
    -05-25-2017, 04:19 PM
  • Nick
    An elite QB is tough to define, but Rams’ Jared Goff has a chance to join that group
    by Nick
    An elite quarterback is tough to define, but Rams’ Jared Goff has a chance to join that group
    By RICH HAMMOND | [email protected] | Orange County Register
    PUBLISHED: December 26, 2018 at 4:02 pm | UPDATED: December 26, 2018 at 4:02 pm

    THOUSAND OAKS — The narrative and the questions about Jared Goff have shifted like weather patterns since 2016. Is he a bust? Is he a legitimate starting quarterback? Is he a star? Could he be a superstar?

    The current barometer reading is somewhere between the latter two, but stay tuned. Goff receives the most scrutiny of any Rams player, and that comes with the position. After a couple wobbly games, Goff improved last week, but the truest test of his season is about to come, and questions will be answered.

    The playoffs are on the horizon, and at the end of a season that has seen him skyrocket to MVP candidacy, then fall under heavy criticism, it’s time for Goff to reveal what class of quarterback he deserves to be in.

    “Winning the championship is always the goal,” Rams coach Sean McVay said before Wednesday’s walk-through practice at Cal Lutheran. “In a lot of instances, that does end up being a good measuring stick, but that’s always a team result and they only have so much control. The great ones, they consistently perform, year in and year out, and that’s really the truest measurement of performance.”

    That’s why getting a read on Goff’s season – and even his three-year NFL career – is tough.

    How to judge a quarterback? Is it a Super Bowl championship? Guys such as Jeff Hostetler, Brad Johnson and Trent Dilfer have rings. Is it a couple of All-Pro selections? Then add Rich Gannon to the list. Is it a guy who has led the league in passing? Matt Schaub did that nine years ago. It’s an inexact science.

    “I think it’s consistency,” McVay said. “The great ones consistently perform, year in and year out.”

    At first hearing, that might sound like cop-out coach-speak, but it is probably the fairest measure, and particularly for Goff, whose has been in search of level ground since the Rams drafted him in 2016.

    Write off Goff’s rookie season, because the team was awful and the coaching quite suspect. In 2017, Goff led the Rams to a division title and made the Pro Bowl, but fizzled in a playoff loss – as did most of his teammates – as he completed only 24 of 45 attempts for 259 yards against the Atlanta Falcons.

    This season, Goff had an amazing early-season run, with four consecutive games of at least 320 yards. By the end of November, Goff had 26 touchdowns and six interceptions and was considered a potential MVP. In his next three games, though, Goff threw one touchdown pass and six interceptions.

    Goff enjoyed what, for the most part, could be considered a bounce-back game last week at Arizona, when he completed 19 of 24 attempts for 216 yards. Goff was efficient but still...
    -12-27-2018, 11:27 AM