The time between the Detroit Lions revealing veteran quarterback Matthew Stafford was available through a trade and the deal between the Lions and Rams didn’t take as long as many had hoped. Lions general manager Brad Holmes quickly struck a deal with his former employer to send Stafford to Los Angeles in exchange for Jared Goff, two first-round picks and one third-round pick.
In his Friday press conference introducing Goff to the Detroit media, Holmes made it known that he had multiple solid offers for Stafford. But in the end, he was drawn to getting Goff as part of the comeback.
“There were a lot of teams, to say no one specifically, but a lot of teams that had all the aggressive offers,” Holmes said. “So when we started discussions with the Rams and (GM) Les (Snead), obviously, that’s when Jared (Goff) came into play. I thought of all the aggressive offers and competitive offers that we were considering, to be able to acquire a quarterback at the status level of what Jared has accomplished, I thought it was very, very intriguing from a compensation standpoint. “
Holmes did not mention names, obviously. But based on the frenzied reports about the subsequent Carson Wentz deal and the possible presences of Russell Wilson and Deshaun Watson on the trading block, it’s easy to validate Holmes’s claim. Teams like Indianapolis (who traded for Wentz), Chicago, Dallas (who re-signed with Dak Prescott), Washington and Denver had been commonly linked to talking to the Lions about Stafford’s availability prior to the Lions-Rams trade.
Based on the return the Eagles got for Wentz, a younger quarterback than Stafford, Holmes was right to get the return he did for Stafford. The Eagles received a 2021 third-round pick and a 2022 conditional draft pick that will be either a first- or second-round pick as part of the deal. The Rams, including Goff, while at a high cost to the salary cap, were too sweet for Holmes to pass up.