Detroit Lions, Los Angeles Rams will make history during Wild Card playoff game…

Los Angeles Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) throws during the second half an NFL football game against the New York Giants, Sunday, Dec. 31, 2023, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Adam Hunger)AP

The Los Angeles Rams and Detroit Lions will create history when they face off in the NFC Wild Card playoff game on Sunday.

The game marks the first time both starting quarterbacks – the Rams’ Matthew Stafford and the Lions’ Jared Goff – will be facing their former teams at the same time in playoff history.

The history of two former quarterbacks facing their former teams at the same time originated on Jan. 30, 2021. That’s when the Rams sent Goff, the No. 1 pick in the 2016 NFL draft, and first-round draft picks in 2022 and 2023, and a third-round pick in the 2021 draft to the Lions in exchange for Stafford, the No. 1 pick of the 2009 NFL draft.

The Rams were willing to move Goff, even though he led them to Super Bowl 53, where they lost to the New England Patriots by a score of 13-3 in 2019. Two years later, the relationship between Goff and Rams’ coach Sean McVay had deteriorated badly.

McVay acknowledged he could have handled Goff’s final days and the trade differently.

“When you end up making a change, that ended up being difficult. And could it have been handled better on my end? Absolutely. And I’ll never run away from that,” McVay told reporters. “He deserved better than the way that it all went down. I’ll acknowledge that.”

The trade paid immediate dividends for the Rams. Stafford, in his first season with the Rams, led them to a 13-3 win over the Cincinnati Bengals to capture Super Bowl 56 during the 2021 season.

Goff has experienced a renaissance in 2023, leading the Lions to a 12-5 record – tied for most wins in franchise history – and a NFC North division title. Goff has an opportunity to help deliver a rare playoff win for the Lions, who are hosting their first home playoff game since facing the Green Bay Packers in a Wild Card playoff game in 1993.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *