I’ve been covering this team for almost a decade at this point. If you’ve been following along with my career, then you know how annoying I find it when fans call for the backup quarterback to play over the starter. Of course, the reason it was so annoying was that fans were suggesting the backup start over Matthew Stafford.
While the scenario is wildly different now, I’m not going to get up on the podium next to all those fans and shout, “Put the backup in!” Here’s why:
The Detroit Lions are 0-5. The season is effectively over. The Lions aren’t going to the playoffs and they’re more than likely looking for their next quarterback in the offseason. So why keep Goff in at this point?
The young players on this team have nothing to gain from Jared Goff being the Lions starting quarterback. Goff has been quite one dimensional all season long. It’s short passes and play that’s so bland that I wouldn’t serve this dish to my worst enemy at a cookout in hell.
On top of that, Goff has been a turnover machine. He’s turned the ball over seven times in five games. Matthew Stafford turned the ball over 12 times over the course of the entire 2020 season. It’s as bad as it can get.
So why not move to Blough? While it’s an entirely different situation, Blough showed he can make some plays in the preseason. He’s also showed that he’s improved since the last time he was the Lions starter in the 2019 season. At beginning of camp, it seemed Blough was the odd man out. But he worked very hard, outdueled Tim Boyle, and worked his way up from a probable cut to the Lions main backup quarterback. Even if Boyle hadn’t suffered an injury in the preseason, Blough made his case for the primary backup.
Again, preseason is a different animal, but Blough was pretty accurate. He went 30-of-44 for 336 yards, a touchdown and an interception over the course of three games. Blough is also willing to do more with the ball. He would throw deep and the offense seemed to flow a lot better with him in the game. Blough can also use his feet. He’s not Lamar Jackson, but he can probably escape the pocket better than Goff can.
At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter. The Lions aren’t going to make the playoffs and there doesn’t seem to be a ton of wins coming their way, butt staying with Goff just feels like you’re delaying the inevitable at this point. So why not just try something different?
Why it’s an overreaction
The reason why you don’t do it is because the Lions are paying Jared Goff an awful lot of money. He is playing bad, but you still have to give him some benefit of the doubt due to the lack of talent he has at receiver. With Quintez Cephus likely out for an extended period of time, that talent lessens even more. How is it possible to truly analyze Goff when you’re trotting out two practice squad receivers every week?
One half of the argument says it doesn’t matter and that the Lions are just going to move on from Goff eventually. The other side is that the quarterback class in this year’s upcoming draft isn’t that great and Goff may be around longer than just a year or two. If that’s the case, removing Goff this early can affect the chemistry building the Lions are trying to do right now.
So while it’s fun to join the “Put in the backup” club in their chants, it’s really not rational when you consider all the variables. Sorry, Lions fans, you’re probably stuck with Goff for a while.