Welcome to drama week.
While the actual football game between the 0-6 Detroit Lions and the 5-1 Los Angeles Rams may not provide much intrigue, the storylines certainly do. Nine months ago, these two teams worked out a deal that would swap each team’s franchise quarterback to the opposite coast and vastly different circumstances. For Matthew Stafford, it was the opportunity to go play for a contender and prove to the world that his potential was basically squashed by poor coaching and even poorer talent acquisition in Detroit.
For Jared Goff, it was a much more humbling experience. Just two years removed from a Super Bowl appearance, the former No. 1 pick was unceremoniously ran out of town and sent to a rebuilding team that had no chance of competing in 2021. Worse yet, the tension between him and Rams head coach Sean McVay had been festering for months, and the trade was one final punch to Goff’s ego on the way out.
On Monday, McVay admitted he would have handled the situation differently if he got another shot.
“Yes, I wish that there was better, clearer communication,” McVay said, per the LA Times. “I know I would do it a little bit differently when those situations arise in the future, but I think Jared knows the respect I have for him. I feel very good about the dialogue that we were able to have before he had gone to Detroit.”
We haven’t heard from Goff’s point of view yet, but when asked about his thoughts on the upcoming reunion with the Rams, the Lions quarterback was in no mood to get into it minutes after his tough loss to the Bengals.
- Over the weekend, we lost former Lions punter and wide receiver Pat Studstill (yeah, the NFL used to be awesome like that), who passed away at age 83 on Saturday.
Remembering the life and career of Pat Studstill:— Detroit Lions (@Lions) October 19, 2021
A WR for the Lions from 1961-67, he owns the franchise record for longest TD reception (99 yards). Before Calvin Johnson matched it in 2012, he also held the NFL record for most consecutive games with 125+ rec. yards (5 games). pic.twitter.com/L4GuKbRDbB
- If you’re annoyed by Cris Carter and his questioning of Dan Campbell leadership after the head coach called for more from Goff, here’s a much more favorable take on Campbell from former NFL head coach Rex Ryan on ESPN’s “Get Up.”
“I love this guy. You want to see the opposite of (Giants HC) Joe Judge? It’s Dan Campbell right here. By the way, that’s a genuine tough guy. And you know what this message is? That was to the entire locker room, and don’t kid yourself for one second, I’m sure he mentioned it in front of his entire football team. He doesn’t have to go through the media to do it. I’m sure he called out Jared Goff and every single person in that locker room.
This is the first time that you had some players on the Detroit team let go of the rope. There are several still hanging on there, but some had let go of the rope and Dan Campbell—they’re not going to play for him long unless they hold onto that rope.”
- A lot of people—myself included—were critical of rookie left tackle Penei Sewell after Sunday’s game. He committed a holding penalty, a false start, and appeared to give up a few pressures. However, Brandon Thorn put out an excellent video on Sewell’s game against the Bengals. Thorn believed he played quite well (which is backed up by PFF grades), and he thinks some of the pressures he allowed were actually on Jared Goff.
The segment on Sewell begins at the 33-minute mark:
- Interesting find from Jeff Risdon of Lions Wire: Lions DBs performed better than you think against the Bengals AND Lions wide receivers were more open than they appeared. Risdon explains here.
- Justin Rogers of the Detroit news looked at all 21 of the Lions’ first half possession in the past four weeks ($) to see what the culprit is of their slow starts.
- I’ll leave you with some levity. Bengals offensive lineman Jackson Carman had to leave Sunday’s game because he was vomiting on the sidelines. The culprit, per Carman? Eminem’s pop-up restaurant “Mom’s Spaghetti”
Would not recommend eating Moms spaghetti when you visit Detroit..— T H E J I A N T (@Jackthejiant) October 18, 2021
Carman later explained that he had not actually eaten there but was just referencing the lyrics from Eminem’s song “Lose Yourself.”