The Dan Campbell and Jared Goff relationship is flourishing before our eyes


It’s hasn’t always been easy for Detroit Lions quarterback Jared Goff. It wasn’t too long ago when you could just see the deterioration of the relationship between him and Rams coach Sean McVay. It fell apart right in front of us. So bad to the point that the Rams decided to publicly move on from him and he was thrown into the Matthew Stafford trade. 

The questions surrounding Goff’s confidence grew louder and louder each week the moment he got to Detroit as he was expected to be nothing more than a bridge quarterback for the Lions. Just a guy that would fill in until the Lions drafted their quarterback of the future. That hasn’t been the case. 

The questions about confidence started to disappear and his play started to improve more and more as the weeks went by. Then in one moment in 2021, you really started to understand what Jared Goff needed. It wasn’t a great offensive line and solid receivers. He had that in Los Angeles too. What he needed was a coach that believed in him and wasn’t going to give up on him. You could see that he had found that the moment he ran off the field to embrace Dan Campbell seconds after the Lions won their first game in 2021. 

We’re supposed to act like this is a business and that nobody has human feelings here, but that’s just not the case. You don’t really check that stuff at the door. No matter how much you’re told that people do.

There’s a special relationship there and it’s something that’s only grown from that moment. The Lions have only gotten better and the moments have too. That’s one of the reasons that the Lions aren’t just going to throw away Goff so they can start Hendon Hooker or something. The extension for Goff is coming and it will likely be one that is beneficial for both parties.

You can tell when you see moments like this after the Lions won their first NFC North championship in 30 years. Jared Goff and Dan Campbell shared an embrace again and told each other that they loved each other. 

The bond is only growing and on Friday we learned maybe part of the reason why that bond is growing. While Goff has never said it, there might be something to the idea that Goff had lost his confidence and, maybe for a moment, he felt like he couldn’t be a good quarterback in this league anymore. It didn’t seem like McVay was doing anything to help him come out of that and that maybe Campbell did and has been. Campbell’s comments on Friday certainly made me feel like that was what was going on there. 

“He can look at a situation and take it for what it is, like this is not you know all of a sudden, I’m not a good quarterback anymore. It’s simply I’ve got to do this with my footwork. I’ve got to be faster in my progressions. I’m drifting too far here in the pocket. He can look at it and look at the substance of and auto correct and not lose confidence. He knows I just got to correct this. You just got to do this better. And he never gets too high never gets too low. And I think that’s exactly where you want your quarterback to be.”

For me personally, I can’t say that I saw that from Goff with the Rams and McVay. When things got worse, Goff tended to get worse with them. In Detroit you rarely see Goff look frustrated. Even when things are going really badly. I go back to the first Bears game this season and point to that as the game that I think got Goff the extension more than any other. 

Here’s a game in which you throw three interceptions and you fully expect your quarterback to collapse in that moment and call it a day. Instead Goff kept his confidence, he didn’t all of a sudden believe that he couldn’t be a good quarterback anymore, and he led the Lions on two touchdown drives in a row in short time and they won the game. 

I think a lot of that can be attributed to what Campbell said about Goff’s resiliency, but I also think a lot of that can be attributed to having someone on the sideline that believed in you enough to help you get that resiliency and that confidence back. I look forward to seeing where this pairing can go. My guess is that it can reach the highest of heights. 

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