Goff’s rookie season in the league was marred by frustration. The team went 4-12 and fired Jeff Fisher after an 0-3 start. Goff himself played as a rookie and struggled at times. The season was frustrating, but it managed to teach the quarterback a quality lesson about commitment.
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Speaking with the media after practice on Wednesday, October 6, Goff was asked about the mindset of the struggling Detroit Lions. As he said, he sees a big difference between the outlook of the 0-4 Lions and the Rams when they were in a similar spot years ago.
“My rookie year we were on a tough team and it seemed like as the season went on, we lost more games, you start (going down) mentally a little bit. I was young, I didn’t really know any better. Here, it doesn’t feel that way,” Goff said. “We have lost four in a row, but we do feel like we are improving, we are doing the right things in practice, we are making plays in the game. How can we make them more often? How can we eliminate those mistakes I spoke about after the game? How can we stop beating ourselves? (That’s) the bottom line and we’re getting there. It’s always a day at a time, it’s always one practice at a time, but I believe in these guys, I believe in Dan (Campbell), I believe in our coaches. I believe the pop will happen and hopefully the momentum starts from there.”
Goff realizes the importance a win could play in helping to rejuvenate the team mentally after some struggles, and as he said, the team continues to work hard even without seeing the fruits of their labor pay off, something which he takes as a major positive.
“I think any time you do feel the reward of hard work and the reward of doing the right thing in practice you’re incentivized to continue to do it. I think that’s been the most encouraging thing about our group so far is we haven’t tasted that reward and we’re still doing the right things,” Goff explained. “We’re still chopping wood. Again, it’s never a moral victory, but we have the right guys which is the encouraging part.”
As Goff said, he believes the Lions have the right mindset and the right players. To that end, it might only be a matter of time before they break through with a win and show some tangible signs of progress.
Goff Believes Lions Offense Must Be Ready to Execute
A big reason the Lions haven’t yet been able to win a game has been the struggles the team has seen on the offensive side starting the game slow. In two out of the first four weeks of the year, Detroit has struggled in the first half, putting up just 10 total points in games against San Francisco, Chicago and Baltimore. Against Green Bay, Detroit scored 17.
As Goff explained, seeing the team get off to a faster start is a huge goal, and it could be as simple as dialing in everybody’s consciousness to the importance of getting off to a good start could be critical.
“Obviously execution and just being intentional about starting fast. We’ve put ourselves in a hole two weeks in a row and have clawed back. Close but no cigar right, just haven’t been able to finish it,” he said. “Being intentional like ‘hey guys we have to start fast’ and even with the younger group we may have, making sure they understand how important that is. I think we do, it’s just a matter of being ready and executing.”
Finding a way to get more points in the first half might indeed be a huge way for the team to help find the elusive first victory of the season.
Goff: Being ‘P***** off’ Might Help Lions
Another thing that could benefit the Lions according to Goff? Some anger. After Detroit’s tough 24-14 loss to the Chicago Bears, Goff was asked about the mentality and mindset of the team on October 3, and as he said, some frustration is beginning to set in. Goff believes if the Lions could channel that frustration, though, they could be in a much better place.
“You get to the point where it’s no longer ‘oh well we did these things good.’ You get to the point where it’s like ‘well, we still lost’ and you’re not happy about it,” Goff explained. Yeah, maybe a pissed off team executes a little bit better and that’s me included. How can we be better next week? Maybe being pissed off will be the answer.”
Regardless of what the answer is, the Lions will have to find it soon. At the very least, though, Goff is heartened by the fact that the Lions continue to battle and work hard and haven’t let their spirits drop even in the face of some adversity.