Go figure: Coaching in the NFL matters a lot.
Last season, Los Angeles Rams quarterback Jared Goff looked like a lost rookie. The first pick of the 2016 draft started seven games and the Rams went 0-7. As Goff was criticized for a bad rookie season, perhaps not enough attention was paid to who was coaching him. Goff was with a coaching staff led by Jeff Fisher that struggled for years to devise a modern offense.
Enter new Rams coach Sean McVay, and enter a different Goff.
Goff finally got to be part of a win as a starting quarterback, as he and the Rams demolished the Indianapolis Colts 46-9 on Sunday. The Colts were without Andrew Luck and two pick-sixes by replacement Scott Tolzien helped the Rams tremendously, but Goff looked better than he did at any point in his disappointing rookie season. A good amount of credit should go to McVay, who led creative offenses as coordinator of the Washington Redskins the past three seasons.
Goff completed 21-of-29 passes for 306 yards, one touchdown and no interceptions. Amazing what a competent coaching staff can do for a young quarterback.
The Colts defense isn’t good and was without cornerback Vontae Davis, who is probably their best defensive player. Still, Goff was in control and consistently made the right reads as the Rams moved the ball better than they did last season. That bar wasn’t high to cross, but it did look like a much improved offense.
One solid game against a short-handed Colts team doesn’t mean Goff has completely turned a corner and is going to be a star. But it’s a much-needed positive step after a lost rookie year.
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