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Reviewing the Jeff Fisher Era: Are The LA Rams Better Off At Quarterback?

Jeff Fisher inherited Sam Bradford and left the Rams with Jared Goff. Is that an improvement?

Chicago Bears v Minnesota Vikings Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images

We’re all in agreance that the Jeff Fisher era was an unmitigated disaster - especially on the offensive side of the ball. The TST team has already looked at the OL (here), WRs (here), and RBs (here). Let’s take a look at the most important position in sports.

Quarterbacks Before and After Fisher

2011 2016
2011 2016
Sam Bradford Jared Goff
Kellen Clemens Sean Mannion
A.J. Feely Case Keenum

Fisher himself proclaimed that one of the primary reasons that he chose the then St. Louis Rams head coaching job over the Miami Dolphins in early 2012 was because of Sam Bradford. At that time, Bradford was looked at very differently than he is now.

In recent years, Sammy B has grown a reputation for being more concerned with himself than the team - specifically with contract situations. First by not taking a pay cut to stay with the Rams, then by demanding a trade when the Eagles drafted Carson Wentz.

But it wasn’t always that way.

He was once a golden boy who put up one of the best rookie seasons by a QB in NFL history. He won Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2010 and was widely regarded as the man who would lead the Rams out of the worst 5 year stretch in NFL history.

Why do I bring all of this up? Because as good as Sam Bradford was as a rookie, Jared Goff was that bad.

Look at these rosters. Take a good long look at the offensive side of the ball and tell me that Bradford had more to work with than Goff did, especially along the OL. Now try to justify how the Rams are better off with Goff - without the rose colored glasses please.

As with most things that he touched, Jeff Fisher ruined a wonderful opportunity for the Rams. Bradford’s injury issues dated back all the way to his days at Oklahoma when he had multiple shoulder injuries. The shoulder never became an issue with the Rams, but unfortunately an ACL tear derailed a breakout season for Bradford in 2013.

Instead of waiting for Bradford to completely heal following knee surgery, Fisher rushed Bradford back and he re-tore the same ACL less than a year later. That decision effectively ended Bradford’s career with the Rams and set the team on a path to ultimately replace Bradford with Goff after Nick Foles failed spectacularly in 2015.

When you contrast Goff and Bradford’s rookie years and consider the season that Bradford has in 2016, it’s pretty cut and dry to say that the Rams are worse off today than they were when Fisher took office.

But that’s not to say that Goff can’t change that verdict.

Good luck young fella.