Los Angeles Rams' quarterback Jared Goff has had one of the strangest careers in recent memory. He looked like a legitimate bust after a disastrous rookie campaign before turning it around with a stellar season in year two and becoming a fringe MVP candidate in year three while leading the team to a Super Bowl appearance.
However, he regressed pretty significantly in year four and continued his downward trajectory in 2020. And after some unenthusiastic comments from head coach Sean McVay, it doesn't look like Goff is a surefire bet to be back as the team's starter in 2021.
Asked about Goff's role next season, McVay gave a surprisingly non-committal answer:
[W]e’re in a situation that we’re in evaluation mode... All those things are things that we’re moving forward, we’re looking forward. I can’t answer any of those questions until, like I said, I take a step back and evaluate everything that is in the best interest of the Rams.- Sean McVay
That's certainly not how a coach speaks about a quarterback he's sold on. That's an answer you'd expect to hear about a Mitchell Trubisky-level player, not someone whose playing on a $130 million deal.
But ironically, that contract all but assures Goff will be back with the team next season. Los Angeles would incur a dead cap hit of $65 million in 2021 if they moved on, and it's not much better in 2022, as that figure only drops to $30.9 million.
If the Rams do eventually elect to move on, it'll likely be 2023, when that penalty dips to a more palatable $8.6 million. While Goff is a virtual lock to be on the roster next year, that doesn't mean McVay has to hand him the starting job.
Given how lukewarm McVay sounded in that interview, don't be shocked if the Rams use their second-round pick (they don't have a first-round pick) on a young QB to at least compete with Goff.
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