It’s Revenge Week across SB Nation NFL team sites. Yesterday, I looked at the primary effect of revenge on the Los Angeles Rams’ 2019 season: the other teams that want revenge against the NFC Champions.
But today as I was thinking about what revenge the Rams might want, I kept coming back to QB Jared Goff.
Perhaps more than anyone, he’s in a position to seek revenge. For the Super Bowl. For the naysayers. For the doubters. For Mike Florio suggesting Goff might not even get a contract extension with the Rams.
Yesterday, Tim looked at the piece from Albert Breer at SI’s MMQB about how Goff is responding to the season-ending loss this offseason. As Goff himself said:
When you have that last game and you don’t get a chance to redeem yourself, there’s not a next week’s storyline. It’s like, ‘Alright, this is the story of the whole offseason.’ And now you have to deal with it.
While a Super Bowl would certainly silence many detractors, QB wins remain one of the more dubious pieces of evidence of individual play. But earning the NFL MVP? That would certainly turn many non-believers around.
ESPN’s Bill Barnwell has a piece out today looking at every single potential candidate for MVP. Four Rams made the list. DT Aaron Donald, QB Blake Bortles (I know), K Greg Zuerlein (I KNOW) and Goff.
Obviously, Goff has the best shot of the four. What’s interesting to me is how he lines up against the other favorites.
SB Nation’s Geoff Schwartz, a former NFL lineman himself, recently looked at the top seven favorites for the MVP using FanDuel’s most recent odds. Goff didn’t make the cut.
He’s tied for 11th with Pittsburgh Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger, and I’m honestly a bit surprised his odds aren’t better.
Goff was fourth in the NFL in passing yards and tied for sixth in touchdowns. The return of Cooper Kupp, the addition of rookie RB Darrell Henderson and added pressure on the Rams’ tight ends to produce more would all lean toward the potential for an even better season for Goff even without a jump in his individual play. The strongest argument against would be the transition on the offensive line that could cause issues early on in the season as OL Joseph Noteboom and OL Brian Allen grow into starting roles at left guard and center potentially.
But Matt Ryan’s going to have a new-look offensive line with the Atlanta Falcons as well. As good as Russell Wilson is, the Seattle Seahawks’ offensive roster kept him from blowing things up statistically. I could come up with a handful of obvious reasons why Wentz might not be as deserving of favor here as Goff.
So I’m a little surprised TBH. I know Goff continues to be a divisive figure among analysts in trying to decipher how much of his output is driven by the offensive scheme and the supporting cast around him and how much is due to his performance alone. But the numbers speak louder than anything, and I could certainly buy into another jump for Goff statistically in 2019.
And if that gets coupled with another postseason run?
I wouldn’t be surprised if Goff gets his revenge this year before getting paid handsomely for it.