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Jared Goff Listed as Quarterback Who Could Take Big Step Backwards

Will Jared Goff struggle for the Detroit Lions in 2021?

New Lions signal-caller Jared Goff will enter the 2021 season at just 26 years old. Yet, is the former Los Angeles Rams quarterback -- a two-time Pro Bowler -- set to take a major step backward in his career? 

CBS Sports' Jared Dubin believes so. In his piece on "Five NFL quarterbacks at risk of taking a big step backward in 2021," he lists Goff. 

As part of his reasoning, Dubin talks about how Detroit's depleted receivers room -- which no longer features impact pass-catchers Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones Jr. -- will affect Goff's level of productivity. 

As Dubin explains, 

"It's tough to think of a single player who had a bigger downgrade in situation than Goff. He went from throwing to Robert Woods, Cooper Kupp, Tyler Higbee, Josh Reynolds, and Van Jefferson, behind an offensive line that ranked second in Football Outsiders' Adjusted Sack Rate, in an offense whose plays were called by Sean McVay, to throwing to Tyrell Williams, Quintez Cephus, Breshad Perriman, Kalif Raymond, and T.J. Hockenson, behind an offensive line that ranked 21st in Adjusted Sack Rate, in an offense whose plays will be called by Anthony Lynn." 

Dubin sees a clear downgrade in receiver talent for Goff, in going from Los Angeles to Motown. And, in mentioning new Lions offensive coordinator Anthony Lynn, he is implying that Lynn's projected strong emphasis on the ground game will also lead to a slide in Goff's numbers across the board. 

"It seemed clear the past couple years that McVay and the talent around him were propping up Goff's performance. Without that safety net, the bottom could very well fall out," Dubin continued. 

While I'm not going to predict that that the bottom is going to fall out for Goff, it is true that Goff has been on the decline since his Pro Bowl campaign in 2018, during which he threw for a career-high 32 touchdowns and 4,688 yards, to go along with just 12 interceptions. And, during that same season, he guided the Rams to an appearance in Super Bowl LIII. 

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Since then, the California native has thrown for only 42 touchdowns, as compared to 29 interceptions. 

Goff's performance the last two seasons indicates to me he's not a middle-tier or top-12 quarterback like former Lions franchise passer Matthew Stafford. 

However, I also don't believe that "the sky is falling" and that Goff is a bottom-five QB in the league. 

For me, he's somewhere in the 20-25 range among NFL passers -- not great by any stretch, but also not as bad as some pundits are projecting. 

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