Jared Goff clearly struggled against the Miami Dolphins in his first professional start.
Number 1 overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, Jared Goff did little to prove any doubters wrong in his first career NFL start. Goff, one of the top rated quarterbacks in last years draft, had highs and lows Sunday against the Dolphins.
Goff threw for a total of 134 yards with 0 touchdowns and 0 interceptions. While Goff definitely didn’t do anything astounding, it is a big positive Goff did not throw any interceptions or fumble the ball. The rookie did show some promise against a strong Dolphin’s defense.
Up until now the Rams had been starting veteran Case Keenum at quarterback. So far this season through nine games, Keenum has thrown for 2,169 yards, 9 touchdowns, and 11 interceptions. The biggest story for the Rams all through this season and during the offseason has been their handling of Jared Goff. Will he be the new face of the franchise? Well it would be an overreaction to condemn him after one mediocre game. Especially since it was Goff’s first professional start.
It should be noted that the last #1 pick QB to win their first start was David Carr, playing for the Houston Texans in 2002. Other number one picks to have lost their first NFL start include Carson Palmer, 2015 NFL MVP Cam Newton, Andrew Luck, and 2x Super Bowl winner Eli Manning.
Plenty of great quarterbacks have also had bad first starts as well. Hall of famer Troy Aikman lost to the New Orleans Saints 28-0 in his first start; throwing for 180 yards and two interceptions. Peyton Manning lost 24-15 in his first start to the Miami Dolphins while throwing for 302 yards, 1 touchdown, and 3 interceptions. Hall of famer John Elway was injured in his first start, and then lost his second start, throwing for 106 yards and 0 touchdowns. All three of these quarterbacks went on to win multiple Super Bowls. So one game is obviously not enough to judge a rookie quarterback’s merit.
It’s unfair to compare Jared Goff to Hall of Fame quarterbacks. However, it is fair to say that he deserves more playing time. In fact, Goff reportedly will be the Rams starter for the foreseeable future. The job is his to lose. Goff needs to show that he’s the best QB on the Rams roster, which shouldn’t be difficult. The more daunting task will be proving that he is capable of leading a franchise. If Goff can show some guts and win some games, he could potentially be the franchise quarterback the Rams have been looking for.