Stretching the defense is a weapon every offense needs
The truth is simple; Jared Goff has struggled with the deep passing game, but if he can’t keep opposing defenses honest, then he isn’t the answer.
Yes, Goff will have to get some help from his receiving corps, but if healthy, Tyrell Williams is a legitimate deep threat that can stretch the field and make plays. Unfortunately, his inability to stay healthy makes him a big question mark.
If Williams plays in 12 games this season I would say that is a big success, but only time will tell how his body does this year.
Then of course there is Breshad Perriman. He is another speed merchant who can take the top off a defense. Yet while he has been able to consistently stay on the field, he has been inconsistent in his play.
The rest of the Lions receivers have questions of their own, but after Williams and Perriman, there aren’t any real deep threats on the roster. That doesn’t mean that given a little pass protection for Goff none of the other receivers can get downfield, but they won’t run by anyone.
So it is a difficult position that Goff is in, but the truth of the matter is that he and the Lions will have to take some shots down the field and complete at least a few of them to maximize the success of the offense.
Is it mission impossible? Not completely, but it is a tall task. Goff will have to be poised enough to take the opportunity down the field when it is available, then throw a catchable ball for the receiver while also putting it where only that receiver can get it. Kenny Golladay won’t be out there so no jump balls.
This is not really Goff’s forte, but again if he wants to be the answer he has to be able to threaten a defense and keep them from sitting on the run game and short passes.
This isn’t going to be an easy season. Dan Campbell and his staff are trying to bring the defense back from the dead and all the explosiveness of the passing game has left the Motor City behind.
Yet Goff has to find a way to make it work if he wants to prove he is ‘the man’. The run game teamed with the play-action short to intermediate passing game will be their bread and butter, but stretching the defense is still a big weapon that every offense needs to be able to utilize at least somewhat effectively in order to have optimal success.
Sure the Lions will only be able to stretch the field as much as their receivers actually make plays, but if Jared Goff is going to be the long-term answer he will have to find a way to keep opposing defenses honest.