Jared Goff is meticulously known to be an even-keeled player and person. He’s never one to show too much emotion whether the situation happens to be good or bad.
Part of what makes Goff a unique player is just that, nothing can bother the guy on an emotional level. He knows how to remain calm, keep the situation at bay, and attack it with a clear-eyed view. In the biggest game of his short career, Goff was staring down the barrel of a gun at multiple points in the NFC Championship game. There were a handful of drives in which he proved that the moment simply isn’t too big for him.
The first moment was the two-minute drive before half time. Goff completed 4/6 passes on the drive for 75 yards, allowing a 6-yard Todd Gurley scamper to end the drive with a touchdown. The pass deep down the left sideline to WR Brandin Cooks was particularly gorgeous, and could have went for a touchdown had Cooks not been face masked (which was missed by the way).
The second drive started with 10:55 left in the fourth quarter, and this proved to be a turning point in the game. Prior to one play, Goff was seen running out wide right to tell TE Gerald Everett something. The dome was absolutely electric which is why he had to run out there and tell him the call. The play clock clicked down quickly and the Rams had to burn a timeout because of it, but it was a pivotal play in the game. On the ensuing snap, Goff sat in the pocket for what felt like ever, had nobody open, scrambled right keeping his eyes downfield, and let a bullet fly. The pass flew off camera leaving us all gasping for air, though Everett pulled in a big reception on the other end of the pass, turned up field, and created a 39-yard play on a broken 3rd-and-3 that probably should have never happened. Goff completed another 33-yard pass to Josh Reynolds on the drive on a wheel route up the left sideline. The drive ultimately sputtered in the redzone with the Rams tying the game on a field goal.
The third drive for Goff was the one where legends are made. The Rams had one remaining timeout and only 1:41 on the clock remaining in the game and down by three points. In the biggest possible moment, Goff ripped darts to Josh Reynolds for 19 yards, Brandin Cooks for 7 yards, Robert Woods for 16 yards, and Todd Gurley for 3 yards. This drive allowed K Greg Zuerlein to line up for the game tying 48-yard field goal.
Onto overtime we go.
Saints win the toss, they receive, and lets fast forward to just after the QB hit by OLB Dante Fowler Jr that led to the interception by SS John Johnson III.
The Rams now have the ball in overtime at their own 46-yard line, only needing a field goal to win the game.
Here’s the first play of that drive:
Are we ready to talk about the platinum hog on Jared Goff yet? pic.twitter.com/84Ms8l6uqI— Sosa K (@QBsMVP) January 21, 2019
That was followed by a nearly-fumbled -3 yard run by C.J. Anderson.
Then we had part two of a legendary play and completion that saved the drive by Goff:
The above play as well as this one came on the game-winning OT drive. They're 100% the reason the Rams won this game, bar none. pic.twitter.com/G7GwpW6knl— Sosa K (@QBsMVP) January 21, 2019
It cannot be overstated how great these two plays were by Goff. He should have been sacked on both occasions. Instead, he extended the plays just long enough to hit TE Tyler Higbee for two positive gains (one of 12 yards, one for six yards) that allowed Greg Zuerlein to hit the game-winning 57-yard field goal.
We’ve seen Goff take massive steps every year under Head Coach Sean McVay, and now he’s the youngest quarterback to ever go to a Superbowl. The man that was once thought of as a massive bust has a chance to be a Superbowl winning quarterback in only the third year of his career, and that needs to be appreciated and celebrated.
Go get ‘em, #16!