At the end of next week the Detroit Lions will be adding new talent to their roster through the NFL draft. Will they focus on improving the defense or bolstering their offense? We’ll find out soon, but one thing they shouldn’t be focusing on is the quarterback position.
While there are five quarterbacks that have the potential to be drafted in the top 10 picks next Thursday, the Lions should be looking to take advantage of that situation by trading back and adding more draft picks. The biggest reason? They have quarterback Jared Goff.
Does Goff’s presence really matter for Detroit Lions?
In short, of course, Goff being on this Detroit Lions team matters! But let’s look closer. Goff still has four years remaining on his contract. Sure, there’s an out after two years, but with the money they are paying him, he should be the starter for both of those seasons barring extenuating circumstances.
First, let’s take into consideration that Goff has proven to be a winner. His experience winning in the playoffs can’t be denied. If Detroit has been waiting for someone who can win the big games, especially in the playoffs, Goff can do it. Sure, Goff’s team was full of talent, and that supports the argument of not drafting a quarterback and, instead, drafting talent at other positions.
Second, quarterbacks drafted in the first round from 2009-2016 aren’t even on the same team anymore. This is a convenient stat that starts after the selection of Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan and before Los Angeles Rams’ newly acquired quarterback Matthew Stafford. But the biggest takeaway is that after four years (2017-2020), those quarterbacks are gone. Even if the Lions grab the best quarterback available, there’s no guarantee he pans out or is still helping your team after four seasons.
Finally, the previous Lions head coach only had three seasons to turn the team into a winner. Well, actually, it was more focused on getting them over the hump and winning the big games. Either way, it didn’t happen and he was relieved of his duties.
Goff will be here for two of those three seasons that are pretty much guaranteed for Lions’ new head coach Dan Campbell. You don’t accept a quarterback in return as part of the trade with a large contract if you’re not going to start him. Campbell has tied his tenure to Goff for at least two years.
This is why they should pass on a quarterback in the draft and build the rest of the roster to help Goff win. In this “win now” league – and based on recent Lions history of coaching turnover – there’s no time to draft a quarterback to sit behind a high-priced starter for two years to develop.
If the winning doesn’t happen in two years with Jared Goff and a hopefully improved roster, that’s when you’ll still be drafting in the top 10 and able to pick a new quarterback. These Detroit Lions need to build the roster to support the quarterback they have for the next couple of seasons. Selecting a quarterback in the first round with Goff on the roster would be a wasted pick.