NFL

LA Rams Are Risking $65 Million With Their All-In Move for Matthew Stafford

The LA Rams are coming off a 2020 campaign that resulted in much concern arise due to quarterback Jared Goff‘s inconsistent performance. LA recently raised a few internal red flags that Goff’s future with the team was in question. The Rams confirmed that notion after surprisingly moving him as part of a blockbuster trade to acquire Matthew Stafford.

Rams voice uncertainty with Jared Goff

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Following their divisional round playoff exit, the focus around the LA Rams centered on Jared Goff‘s future.

The chatter sparked up after the playoff loss to the Green Bay Packers, with head coach Sean McVay stating that Goff was the team’s quarterback “right now.” The conversation ramped up another notch earlier this week with general manager Les Snead voicing that the 26-year-old was in the team’s plans at this moment, according to Greg Beacham of the Associated Press.

“He’s a Ram right now,” Snead said. “He’s No. 2 in wins since he and Sean have partnered together. That’s been a heckuva partnership. What I do think is the real thing that should come out of this is, hey, we want to be a better offense. And that includes Jared.”

A few days after Snead’s comments, the Rams have gone full-tilt by moving the former 2016 first overall pick in a blockbuster trade for Matthew Stafford.

Rams are risking $65 million with all-in move for Matthew Stafford

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The LA Rams have made the first surprising move ahead of the offseason with their all-in trade for Matthew Stafford.

LA has chosen to part ways with longtime quarterback Jared Goff in a blockbuster acquisition by packaging the former Pro Bowler along with their 2022 first-round pick, 2023 first-round pick, and a 2021 third-round pick for Stafford, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.

Although the writing was on the wall for Goff over the last couple of weeks, the trade came as a complete surprise. The move will shift Goff’s remaining four-year, $106.6 million to the Lions, while the Rams will take a $22.2 million dead cap hit in 2021.

Stafford has two years remaining on his contract for roughly $43 million, meaning the Rams are taking on approximately $65.2 million concerning Stafford through the 2022 campaign. LA is turning the page toward potentially a new era with the 32-year-old under center moving forward.

The trade will push the Rams to seven consecutive drafts without a first-round pick. It also marks the first time in the common draft era that two former No.1 overall picks are traded for each other, according to ESPN.

In many ways, the Rams are taking a calculated risk with Stafford it’s lower financial commitment while it could open up their offense in a different fashion. 

Bright future ahead in LA?

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With the trade all but official, the question becomes how the move impacts the Rams’ future and, more importantly, their offensive game plan.

Over the last couple of years, Jared Goff struggled to take the next step forward in his maturation as a quarterback. The offensive scheme instead became focused on short-to-intermediate throws at the primary options in the passing game.

Stafford could open up the playbook for throws down the field at a greater frequency. According to Sharp Analysis, Stafford threw the seventh-most pass attempts that were at least 20 yards and ranked 12th in on-target rate. Meanwhile, Goff placed 21st in such passing game options and 32nd in on-target rate.

The Rams could also quickly work out an extension with Stafford to lower his cap hit for 2021 and give the team more salary-cap space for this upcoming offseason. LA has prominent players in safety John Johnson III and Leonard Floyd, who are both scheduled to become free agents they hope to retain.

There are several ways that LA can benefit from the trade that could put the franchise in a promising spot in the years ahead.