INGLEWOOD – An emotional week for quarterback Jared Goff didn't end the way he wanted as the Detroit Lions fell to the Rams, 28-19, in Goff's first game back in Los Angeles since an offseason trade that sent him and draft picks to Detroit for Matthew Stafford.
Goff handled the media storm well all week, and Detroit was in the game right to the end with a chance to take a lead late. Jalen Ramsey's interception of Goff in the Rams endzone with five minutes left ended Detroit's comeback bid.
Goff said all the right things leading up the game and after it was over, and the Rams organization was all class by playing a tribute video to Goff before the contest. He made two Pro Bowls as a Ram and led them to a Super Bowl three years ago.
"There's a lot of guys I never saw after the trade," Goff said after completing 22-of-36 passes for 268 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions in the game. "Being able to see them and say hello and catch up for two minutes was good. It was healthy and good.
"I've got a lot of memories with a lot of those guys and a lot of lifelong friendships and we did some pretty special things in my five years here. It's something I'm definitely really proud of."
This game has been much anticipated since the schedule came out in April, and there has to be part of Goff that's glad it's over. Now the focus shifts solely to Goff trying to get the Lions their first victory of the season, starting next week as they host Philadelphia (2-5).
"Yeah, if we would have won this there would have been a little more special meaning to it," Goff said. "But we needed a win, and we still need a win, regardless of who we're playing, and that's what we're focused on right now."
RAYMOND BUILDING RAPPORT
Wide receiver Kalif Raymond had his finest game as a member of the Detroit Lions Sunday, catching six passes for 115 yards. It was Raymond's second career 100-yard receiving game, and the eighth most by an undrafted player for the Lions.
Mostly a special teams contributor his first four seasons in the league, Raymond is getting a chance to be much more for the Lions this season.
"Kalif is a perfect example of the guys in our locker room that fight," Goff said. "He fights, he's where he needs to be, he's on time, he's reliable and he's going to get the ball because of that."
The Lions have needed a receiver to step up after losing Tyrell Williams (concussion) and Quintez Cephus (collar bone) earlier this season. Raymond had a terrific diving catch down the right sideline and a 37-yard catch-and-run later in the game. He made the kind of plays the Lions have been dying to get from their receiving corps early this year.
"I love getting him the ball as much as I can and I'm starting to build a good rapport with him," Goff said.
Raymond said after the game it means a lot to him for his quarterback to say that.
"It's still growing," he said of the rapport with Goff. "As the games keep going, just keep trusting each other. And him trusting me is huge."
Goff and running back D’Andre Swift looked like they could have connected for a walk-in touchdown deep in Rams territory in the third quarter, but some miscommunication led to an incompletion, and ultimately an Austin Seibert field goal.
Goff looked to hit Swift in the right flat and thought he was going to sit down on his route, but Swift drifted outside and the two couldn't connect.
Swift took the blame for the play after the game.
"That's on me, I have to have firm feet," Swift said. "Stay firm in my route, too much drifting, I'm going to mess up the way he sees what I'm doing in my route. I've got to have firm feet and stay still. That's on me."