What the Matthew Stafford-Jared Goff trade means for the Lions future

Jared Goff, Los Angeles Rams (Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports)
Jared Goff, Los Angeles Rams (Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Jared Goff, Los Angeles Rams
Jared Goff, Los Angeles Rams (Photo by Joe Scarnici/Getty Images) /

Why did the Lions want Jared Goff?

Now let’s talk about Jared Goff. Upfront, I think it’s unrealistic to expect him to improve significantly on what we’ve seen in the league, and with the weaker roster in Detroit, I would expect him to be a below-average starter. I don’t think you’ll find many who disagree.

His contract also handcuffs the Lions’ ability to make moves in free agency this year given the $28.2 million cap hit which now puts the Lions $10 million over the project 2021 cap. That’s disastrous, right?

If you wanted the Lions to be a winning team in 2021 then sure, it likely kills that dream. But if we want this team to become a contender in the medium term then there is certainly some upside, even if it may hurt in the short term.

I’ve seen many discussions about how Kenny Golladay and Romeo Okwara should return compensatory picks if the Lions don’t re-sign them in 2021. However, this was unrealistic given the Lions were likely going to be buyers in free agency and so the compensatory formula would work against them.

With this trade, the Lions can’t afford to be buyers as it stands, and unfortunately, that includes buying back Okwara and Golladay. While it’s possible one comes back, it’s unlikely both will be in Allen Park for training camp.