That was fast, and it became a two-birds-one-stone situation. The rumor mill indicated Matthew Stafford was going to be the first quarterback to go, and it could be the Rams if only they could figure out what to do with Jared Goff.
Well, poof, problem solved:
Detroit is dealing QB Matthew Stafford to the Los Angeles Rams in exchange for two future first-round picks, a third-round pick and QB Jared Goff, per sources. Two former No. 1 overall picks trading places in the first blockbuster NFL trade of 2021.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 31, 2021
The Rams have no 2021 first rounder, so the future firsts could be of diminished value if Stafford helps them over the next two years. That probably factored into the Lions’ calculations on having to get two firsts in the deal, as well as a third. Given everyone knowing that a deal was coming thanks to the mutual separation announcement, the Lions had to get the best deal they could. Was this it? Eh. I don’t know. Probably depends on what you think of Goff, and the Lions may have gotten a little more in return for taking him on.
As for Goff, as we discussed earlier, his contract isn’t all that compelling at this point, with the Lions now kinda locked into him for at least the next two years (most of the guaranteed money is off the books by then). They could use that time to see if he can take another step forward – he’s just 26, and obviously did have two very fine seasons in 2017-18 – and/or to build a bridge to a longer-term solution, perhaps drafted as soon as this year.
The alternative would be shopping Goff, but it’s hard to know what the market will look like. Again, you’d have to really believe in Goff more than what he’s shown the last two years (and, further, for what it’s worth: it’s hard for me to see the Bears and Lions getting together on a deal like this, so if you weren’t into the idea of Goff, you’re probably off the hook now for your worries).
Stafford is likely to be a significant upgrade to the already-formidable Rams. So, you know, be advised, NFC.
More on the fallout soon, and you can expect the next turn on the QB carousel to come soon.