Dan Campbell Calls out Jared Goff After Loss: ‘He Needs to Step Up’

Dan Campbell

Getty Dan Campbell yells at the Lions during a loss to Cincinnati in 2021.

The Detroit Lions struggled in a multitude of ways against the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 6, but perhaps the worst way the team scuffled was on offense.

Detroit only put up 228 yards on the day and 11 total points, and it’s becoming quite clear the team is trending in the wrong direction this season on that side of the ball. With this in mind, Dan Campbell has some ideas of what has to happen for things to turn around, and he’s looking right at his quarterback Jared Goff first.

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Following the ugly 34-11 defeat, Campbell spoke to the media on October 17, and was asked about his quarterback. While he said judging Goff is difficult, he does want to see him start to do more on the field and make more things happen for the team.


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“I will say this, I still don’t feel like we can accurately judge him one way or another. I don’t feel that way yet. Now, I will say this. I feel like he needs to step up more than he has,” Campbell told the media. “I think he needs to help us, you know, just like everybody else. I think he’s going to need to put a little bit of weight on his shoulders here, and it’s time to step up, make some throws, and do some things. But he needs help. Look, I told him out there, some of that stuff, we’re getting holding calls, it’s because he’s drifting that pocket 10 yards deep so it’s not fair to those guys either. This is a collective effort now, so it goes hand in hand. But I want to see him step up. I do. Because I think he can do it.”

Coming into this season, most folks realized the adjustment to Detroit for Goff would take time, and given the injuries that have played out around him, that is even more the case. It’s clear the Lions are going to remain patient, but it’s more than interesting to see Campbell hitting Goff with a bit of pointed criticism after this week’s performance.


Campbell Explains Struggles of Lions Offense

While the Lions were bad all the way around, it’s possible they were worst on the offensive side of the ball on this day. Detroit struggled in plenty of ways on that side of the ball, and being an offensive coach, Campbell was well aware of what his team wasn’t doing on the field consistently enough.

“Offensively we had no rhythm, we had no tempo, we couldn’t execute on third down, missed opportunities and that’s the story of the game. That was a beat down,” Campbell told the media honestly.

Overall, Campbell’s take is correct. The Lions couldn’t sustain any type of a drive until garbage time when the game was well out of hand and the result was known. That doesn’t bode well for the future of the team whatsoever.


Campbell Speaks on Potential for Quarterback Change

Naturally, with the struggles of Goff playing out in real-time for the offense, folks have begun to wonder whether or not a change could be coming at quarterback, with Detroit perhaps shifting to backup David Blough. In spite of Campbell’s words about the offense, though, it doesn’t seem like a change is coming on the field, at least right now. During the press conference, Campbell explained that it wasn’t an option at this point.

Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press explained that Campbell admitted there wasn’t going to be a quarterback switch, and the troubles of the offense were varied and shared by everyone.

While folks might be frustrated with Goff, it’s obvious that inserting in Blough wouldn’t change much for the Lions. The team has injuries up front for the offensive line and also at wideout. This is combining to make life tough on the Lions no matter who is under center.

Campbell might not be inclined to switch off of Goff, but it’s clear he knows when to choose his words. That much was clear after an ugly Week 6 performance.

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