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#pounditSunday, May 9, 2021

Matthew Stafford

Matthew Stafford says trade to Rams has ‘reenergized’ him

Matthew Stafford

It sounds like his trade to the Los Angeles Rams might prove to be exactly what quarterback Matthew Stafford needed.

Stafford sounded off on his move out west Monday, telling SiriusXM NFL Radio that he has been “reenergized” by the deal.

“It’s a new experience for my entire family,” Stafford said, via Charean Williams of ProFootballTalk. “We were so set with our lifestyle in how we kind of went about day-to-day life in Detroit. That has definitely changed. You know if you don’t have energy to move your wife and four kids and a dog and everybody out to California, you’re in a lot of trouble. So it’s definitely reenergized me.

“I’m excited about the opportunity, not only from a family standpoint but really from a football standpoint. I’m excited about being a part of this Rams organization that’s had so much recent success, and I can’t wait to get the football season going and get all that going.”

Stafford certainly wasn’t playing badly in Detroit. He put up another 4,000-yard season for the Lions in 2020, having only fallen short of that mark once in a 16-game campaign. That should continue in Los Angeles under coach Sean McVay.

By the sound of it, this deal could prove to be beneficial to both quarterbacks involved in it.

Photo: A Healthier Michigan/Flickr via cc-by-sa 2.0

Rams DL makes honest admission about Matthew Stafford upgrade

Matthew Stafford

At least one member of the Los Angeles Rams seems to firmly believe that the team’s acquisition of quarterback Matthew Stafford will prove worth it.

Rams defensive lineman Michael Brockers admitted to TMZ Sports that going from Jared Goff to Stafford represented a “level up” and puts the Rams firmly in contention for a Super Bowl.

“Is it a level up? In my heart, deeply, just understanding what [Stafford] brings, it’s a level up [over Goff],” Brockers told TMZ’s reporter.

It’s harsh on Goff, but it’s also hard to argue. While Goff was successful in spells with the Rams, Stafford has a long record of putting up big numbers and has led the Lions to three playoff appearances. He simply has more varied skills than Goff does.

Brockers’ comments are unlikely to make Goff feel any less confused about the end of his time with the Rams, though.

Photo: A Healthier Michigan/Flickr via cc-by-sa 2.0

Lions tried to get Aaron Donald in trade with Rams

Aaron Donald

The Detroit Lions aimed very, very high in initial trade talks surrounding quarterback Matthew Stafford. Their initial ask of the Los Angeles Rams demonstrates just how high.

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Lions initially asked the Rams for defensive lineman Aaron Donald in exchange for Stafford. That obviously went nowhere, and the two sides ultimately did sort out a deal involving Jared Goff and two first-round picks.

It’s doubtful that even the Lions thought that request would go anywhere, and it was probably just a negotiation tactic. In the Lions’ eyes, it couldn’t hurt to ask, and it clearly didn’t jeopardize the chances of making a deal.

The Lions were certainly ambitious in the initial trade talks with the Rams, but the Rams’ initial attempts to upgrade at quarterback were pretty ambitious too.

Photo: The 61st Contingency Response Wing/Flickr via CC-by-S.A. 2.0

Rams reportedly could extend Matthew Stafford contract

Matthew Stafford

One of the big perks of trading for Matthew Stafford is that the quarterback has a very reasonable two-year, $43 million contract. That, however, does not mean the Los Angeles Rams won’t look to rework it.

Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic reported Saturday that the Rams could try to add an extra year to Stafford’s contract in order to provide themselves with a modest bit of cap relief. However, this is not seen as absolutely necessary.

Pro Football Network’s AJ Schulte pointed out that the Rams could open up a decent bit of cap space by extending Stafford and restructuring some key contracts as well.

Many were surprised to see the Rams land Stafford due to their complex cap situation, but moving Jared Goff — especially to a willing suitor — made it possible. The Rams still have some cap issues to work through, but they’ve actually managed to put themselves in a decent situation.

Photo: A Healthier Michigan/Flickr via cc-by-sa 2.0

Here is why the Rams gave up so much to get Matthew Stafford

Matthew Stafford

There were numerous contenders in the Matthew Stafford trade sweepstakes, and many teams submitted competitive offers to the Detroit Lions. So how did the Los Angeles Rams end up with Stafford? And why did they give up so much? There is a simple explanation.

Let’s start with what the Rams sent to the Lions for Stafford:
– 2021 3rd-round pick
– 2022 1st-round pick
– 2023 1st-round pick
– Jared Goff

The two first-round picks are more than what other teams were offering. The reason the Rams had to send so much draft capital to the Lions is because they had to sweeten the deal to get Detroit to agree to take on Goff’s unfavorable contract.

Goff got a four-year, $134 million contract extension from the Rams prior to the start of the 2019 season. However, that extension does not actually begin until next season. Goff had good numbers in 2017 and 2018, but his two most recent seasons were not very inspiring. And his fat deal is just now beginning.

Goff is guaranteed $43 million over the next two seasons, so Detroit might have a window to cut him after 2022. That timeline would sync up nicely with when they get their extra first-round picks.

Goff is good enough where the Lions should be competitive as long as they have him, but they are set up to really have opportunities to build in 2023.