The preseason is over now, and if you didn’t get a chance to catch any of first overall pick Jared Goff, you may have to wait around a while.
After last night’s loss to the Minnesota Vikings, Los Angeles Rams coach Jeff Fisher told the press that Goff—for whom the Rams traded two first-, second-, and third-round picks—would probably be the team’s third-string quarterback. That would put him behind Case Keenum and backup Sean Mannion, who were at least bad enough to warrant the Rams spending two drafts worth of picks on Goff in the first place.
Fisher said that the Rams are “all about being patient” with Goff, reasoning that applies to pretty much any rookie in any sport. That pitch would be easier to swallow if, well, we all couldn’t watch Goff with our two eyes.
The video above features all of Goff’s throws from last night, a game in which he went 6-16 for 67 yards with a touchdown and a pick. As bad as those numbers are, they could have been even worse: you’ll notice in the video that Goff’s longest completion, for 22 yards, was thrown when he was a yard past the line of scrimmage, but no penalty was called. The rest of his throws were mostly wobbly misses or short completions a handful of yards downfield.
It wasn’t one bad game, either. For the preseason Goff finished 22-49 for 232 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions, which is awful. Pro Football Focus, if that’s more your speed, has Goff ranked as the sixth-worst quarterback of the preseason.
None of us are scouts (unless you are!), but if somebody showed you Goff’s tape—you can watch his throws from preseason game one here and game two here—with no context, there’s no way you would guess he was the number one pick in the draft. He looks skittish in the pocket, afraid to throw the ball past the sticks, and physically unimposing.
As Yahoo’s Frank Schwab points out, the last five quarterbacks to be picked first overall—Matthew Stafford, Sam Bradford, Cam Newton, Andrew Luck, and Jameis Winston—all started Week 1 of their rookie seasons. Bradford’s career illustrates that fact alone isn’t a sure indicator of success. But at the very least Goff is far behind his peers in this exclusive group, and so far it looks like he would have to undergo a major transformation to end up more like Newton or Luck than Bradford.
It’s the sort of thing that might get a whole front office and coaching staff cleaned out, but, you know.