Lions quarterback Jared Goff tepidly makes list of dark horse NFL MVP candidates

Kirthmon F. Dozier / USA TODAY NETWORK

Jared Goff will be one of the key players for the Detroit Lions this year, and he has lukewarmly landed on a list of dark horse MVP candidates.

If you were to list out the top candidates for NFL MVP in 2023, you'd have the usual suspects like Patrick Mahomes, Joe Burrow etc. But there issome times a surprise winner no one saw coming in the preseason, someone who may have been considered a dark horse even.

Jared Goff will be a pivotal player for the Detroit Lions this season. He will carry an epic streak of 324 pass attempts without an interception into the season. If the team is going to meet expectations, it won't happen without Goff playing well again. If he goes down with an injury for any substantial time, the hopes for the season will go down with him.

Jared Goff gets purely tacked on to list of dark horse MVP candidates

Adam Schein of recently produced a list of nine dark horse NFL MVP candidates for 2023. He put Goff at No. 9, however hesitantly the more he wrote it seems.

"I'm a Goff fan and 2023 Lions believer. Goff was the second-best quarterback in the NFC last year, behind only Jalen Hurts. That's not an outlandish opinion at all....."

"Now, while I believe the Lions can break through into the playoffs, I don't think they'll be true Super Bowl contenders. And while I like Goff to enjoy another fine season under brilliant young offensive coordinator Ben Johnson, I don't think he'll rank among the NFC's top two quarterbacks again this fall. Partially because it appears Dan Campbell's team could be looking to run teams over with a road-grading O-line and overhauled backfield.

Long story short: Goff deserves a spot on this ranking, but he's the darkest dark horse here."

It seems like Schein should have just made his list an even eight. He tacked Goff on for some reason, as "the darkest dark horse here" (backed by the odds he used) who won't "rank among the NFC's top two quarterbacks again this fall." While the last sentiment is a prominent angle here in terms of Goff's regression prospects this year, it also weakens the case for him as a dark horse MVP candidate.

Goff might be the Lions' team MVP this year when it's all said and done. But looking league wide, and yes, in June, Schein just couldn't make a strong case for him as a dark horse MVP candidate.