Talk of Fame Network
The Rams have a new home. They’re the Los Angeles Rams now, returning to southern California after 21 years in St. Louis. And they have a new quarterback.
Introducing former Cal quarterback Jared Goff.
The Rams thought so much of Goff they traded away multiple draft picks to acquire the first pick of the draft, and, naturally, most persons believe the rookie – not Case Keenum, Nick Foles or Sean Mannion – will be the team’s starter when the Rams open on Sept. 12. But that’s not necessarily the case, coach Jeff Fisher told the Talk of Fame Network.
“We’re going to take our time,” he said on the latest broadcast, dedicated to the Rams’ return to the West Coast. “We’re not going to rush him. He’s a quick learner. He’s got a special and arm and vision, and he’s going to play sooner than I think a lot of people think. We’re not going to put him in position to fail. We want him to be successful.”
(Jared Goff photo courtesy of the University of California)
That’;s fine, except Tampa Bay drafted Jameis Winston with the first pick of the 2015 draft and started him in the season opener. The same was true of Andrew Luck in 2012 … and Cam Newton in 2011 … and Sam Bradford in 2010. In fact, the last quarterback taken with the first overall pick not to start was the Raiders’ JaMarcus Russell in 2007, and that was only because he failed to sign a contract until the season began.
The pressure, then, to start Goff will be enormous, especially with the Rams not having a winning season under Fisher. But the head coach insists he will not cave to outside forces.
“We’re the ones in the meeting rooms,” he said of coaches. “We’re the ones behind the scenes. We’re the ones on the practice fields. So we’ll be the ones who make those decisions, along with his progress. He’ll have a lot to do with it, but nobody’s looking over their shoulder right now.
“We’re going to do what we think is best for the immediate future of this football team and the long-term future. As I’ve been asked numerous times, I can’t tell you when he starts. But I can tell you: When he starts he’ll be ready.
“We all know how difficult the position is to play … for everybody involved. For the great ones, it’s hard to play sometimes. So we’re going to bring him along so that he has a chance to be successful, and that has a lot to do with the people we surround him with and how our defense plays and our run game and our offensive line. Not to look past any other offensive positions, but our offensive line’s going to be a bright spot.”
So, Rams’ fans hope, will the quarterback … whenever Jared Goff has that chance to play.