On the roster: Jared Goff, Tim Boyle, David Blough
Key losses: Matthew Stafford
^with another team
Best competition: Backup quarterback
This should be a good competition throughout training camp between Boyle and Blough to see who becomes Goff's backup in the regular season.
Boyle was Aaron Rodgers' backup in Green Bay the last couple seasons, including last year when he beat out first-round pick Jordan Love for the job, before signing with Detroit in free agency this offseason. Boyle is a big quarterback (6-4, 232) with a strong arm, but he attempted just four passes the last two seasons in Green Bay.
Blough has a little more experience getting the opportunity to start five games in 2019 when Stafford missed the second half of the season with a back injury. Blough and the Lions lost all five starts, but Blough gained some terrific experience in the process. Head coach Dan Campbell said he's been impressed with Blough's intelligence and command of the offense and the huddle this offseason.
This competition is close, and the preseason will go a long way in determining who wins the job come September.
Twentyman's take: I get the sense from talking with Goff a couple times this offseason and then sitting down with general manager Brad Holmes last month, that internal expectations for Goff are much higher than most of the outside expectations.
Goff has taken the trade that sent him to Detroit in exchange for Stafford and two first-round picks personal. He said it's given him a chip on his shoulder, and he's motivated to prove he still has a lot of good football left in him at just 26 years old. Holmes, who was the director of college scouting for the Rams when they selected Goff No. 1 overall in 2016, has a ton of confidence in Goff, and doesn't view him as a bridge player at the position in Detroit.
Goff ultimately has to prove it on the field. He'll be playing behind what's expected to be one of the best offensive lines in the league this season. He has a Pro Bowl tight end to throw to and two exciting running backs. The receiver corps is a bit of a question mark, but good quarterbacks in this league elevate the players around them, so the expectation is for Goff to come in, play well and give the Lions opportunities to win football games.
By the numbers:
2: Pro Bowl appearances in 2017 & 2018 for Goff.
3: Goff is one of three active quarterbacks (Tom Brady & Matt Ryan) to throw for at least 3,800 yards and 20 touchdowns in four straight seasons.
3: Connecticut high school football championships Boyle led Xavier High School to.
26: The number of passing records Goff held at the University of California before leaving for the NFL.
75: Blough's first regular-season NFL completion was a 75-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Kenny Golladay in his first career start on Thanksgiving in 2019 against the Bears.
Quotable: "It builds that chip on your shoulder a little bit," Goff said of being traded. "I won't lie about that. There is that extra motivation and chip that you do feel."