Detroit Lions starting quarterback Jared Goff is in a good place heading into training camp. After a terrific finish to his first season in Detroit last year, Goff has picked up where he left off this spring, and had a big say in the new systems offensive coordinator Ben Johnson is implementing on offense.
The real debate come training camp for the Lions at the quarterback position is who will end up being Goff's backup in 2022 – Tim Boyle or David Blough.
Boyle got an opportunity to start three games last year as Goff dealt with some injuries, going 0-3, while completing 65 percent of his passes with three touchdowns and six interceptions.
Blough got his opportunity to start five games in 2019. He was 0-5 as a starter, completing 54 percent of his passes with four touchdowns and six interceptions.
Despite the 0-8 record combined as starters, Lions quarterbacks coach Mark Brunell feels good about both players being able to step in if something happens to Goff.
"That's why David and Tim are here," Brunell said. "We have confidence in them. You don't just bring guys back to bring them back because they were here last year. You bring them back because you feel they have the ability to be solid backups. We have a lot of confidence. They are going to need a good training camp like Jared will too, But just as far as spring is concerned, I know speaking for myself, very pleased with that room."
Boyle was re-signed to a one-year deal on March 14 and Blough a few days later on the 17th. The Lions opted not to select a developmental quarterback in this year's NFL Draft, which speaks to the confidence Lions general manager Brad Holmes and head coach Dan Campbell have in Boyle and Blough to take the next step and be in a position to win football games if asked to fill in on gameday.
Both players battled it out pretty hard in OTAs and minicamp over the last month. Each seemed to trade really good days during the open portions of practice to the media, while splitting second-team reps all spring.
"They are battling," Brunell said. "Two real smart guys. Two guys that are certainly capable of being in that two spot and training camp will be interesting. They are battling it out pretty hard and work very, very well together. I have a good room. I'm very fortunate."
View photos from Day 7 of Detroit Lions OTA practices on Monday, June 13, 2022 in Allen Park, Mich.
The Lions obviously hope Goff can stay healthy for 17 games, and we only see Boyle or Blough for a late kneel down, but there's always a chance they have to step in and steal a game or two, something they haven't yet been able to do. Brunell thinks they're in a better place to do that in 2022.
"That's the job of a quarterback in a supporting role. You do not know when your time is coming," Brunell said. "You have to stay ready, and that's what I love about David and Timmy so much, at any moment they have to step in, they would do just fine. They really would."