Matthew Stafford is going to the Rams in exchange for Jared Goff, two future first-round picks, and a third-round pick. More details here.
Here are the winners and losers from the trade:
Winner: Matthew Stafford
Stafford, undoubtedly, is the biggest winner of Saturday’s blockbuster trade. He finally has a head coach that knows how to utilize his skill-set in Sean McVay, whose innovative offense is built for a QB with Stafford’s talents. This duo also has studs in Cam Akers, Robert Woods, and Cooper Kupp to work with on offense.
Stafford goes from a team with 7-9 aspirations to Super Bowl goals next season. For the first time in Stafford’s career, he will have a top-level defense on the other side. Get this: in 2020, the Rams ranked 1st in yards and points allowed, the Lions ranked last (LOL) in both categories.
It’s premature to call the Rams the NFC favorites, they are not. Though they are instantly better with Stafford and are close to, or on-par with the Bucs and Packers, the conference’s two best teams.
Most importantly, Stafford is leaving Detroit for Los Angeles, that’s the real win.
Loser: Jared Goff
I hate to be negative, but for Goff, this sucks. With the subtraction of Stafford, the Lions have the worst roster in the NFC and are in official rebuild mode. For a young, expensive QB who isn’t the future, there’s isn’t a worse situation than the one the Lions present.
Unless Goff miraculously improves, he will be an unpopular bridge QB in Detroit.
Winner: The Lions’ future
Yes, the Lions are bad, but their fans are happily looking ahead to the future this morning.
The Lions need to rebuild both sides off the ball and the increased draft capital gives them the opportunity to do that via the draft, or by trading picks for upcoming disgruntled and proven players.
Taking back Goff indicates the Lions weren’t in love with the QBs expected to be available at 7th overall. Now, the Lions can look to sure up other areas and use one of their four first-round picks between 2022 and 2023 at the QB position.
There’s also the possibility that the Lions botch all this by drafting more mediocre players. Given the team’s history, that is a reasonable concern. Though, if nothing else, the trade gave the fan base hope, which they haven’t had in years.
Loser: the 49ers.
The 49ers, not the Rams, were a Matt Stafford away from bolting to the top of the NFC. Not only did the 49ers — who were interested in Stafford — miss out, Stafford went to San Francisco’s division rival. A double L in one night. The first step toward a Super Bowl is a division win. Unless the 49ers acquire Deshaun Watson — which is a long shot — their roster will enter the season ranked behind the Rams’ roster.
Losing out on Stafford also makes it more likely Jimmy Garoppolo is back starting for San Francisco in 2021. Like the Rams, the 49ers seem convinced they need an upgrade at QB. San Francisco’s next options include trading for Sam Darnold or drafting a QB at 12th overall, two risky options for a team one year removed from the Super Bowl.
Winner: the NFL
The NFL won last night. Player movement did wonders for the NBA’s overall discussion, and the NFL is on track for an NBA-style offseason. And unlike the NBA, the NFL has a great on-field product to back up the offseason buzz.
Most seasons, NFL talk dies down after the Super Bowl and doesn’t pick back up until draft talk begins. (Excluding last year, the NFL’s free agency period is often a dud). Sports fans love predicting, debating, and projecting — all of which are enhanced with rumors and trades.
Stafford was just the first domino to fall, and perhaps not the biggest.
Comment below with the biggest winners and losers from the Matthew Stafford-Jared Goff trade: