Jared Goff Now Holds Distinct Modern QB Record for the Detroit Lions
The Detroit Lions had a truly unforgettable season in 2023 - so much so that I had to go back and clean up some articles from earlier in the season. Well, it didn't take me long to realize Jared Goff has done something truly special with this franchise over the last three years.
Jared Goff, rightfully so, got some of his flowers back through the 2023 NFL Playoffs. Lions fans chanted his name everywhere, and he played some remarkable postseason football. The former first-overall pick of the 2016 NFL Draft has that aura about him once again that made him so alluring to the Los Angeles Rams before.
He had to be cast out and doubted beyond reason beforehand, but his trust in Dan Campbell and the robust talent brought in to assist him has given Goff something no other Lions quarterback can say they have since 1975.
Back in July, I wrote some offseason content on the "winningest" quarterbacks in franchise history. It was rather tongue-in-cheek because at the time only four quarterbacks in franchise history had a winning record with at least 17 starts with the team, equivalent to a full season. Furthermore, only 17 quarterbacks have nine wins or more in franchise history. The numbers were ugly, but with a beautiful season ahead, maybe some of that would change.
It did. Jared Goff led the Lions to a 12-win season, matching the franchise's highest single-season win total in the regular season. The 14 wins counting the playoffs are the most in franchise history.
In doing so, Goff became the only quarterback to start a game for the Detroit Lions since 1975 to currently have a winning record, as his regular season record with Detroit now rests at 24-23-1. Ironically enough, 24-23 was the score of the Lions' first playoff win in over 30 years.
Naturally, Matthew Stafford did, at times, have a winning record with the franchise, however when he was traded for Goff in 2021, he had a losing record with the franchise, 74-90-1. Goff's overall record is better than Stafford's, for those keeping score. Goff's record as a starter in the NFL is 66-50-1, while Stafford's is 98-107-1.
For Goff, with the presumption that the Lions will continue to be a threat in the NFC, his record would get well above .500, cementing himself as arguably the best modern quarterback in franchise history. While Stafford certainly had impressive stats in Detroit, and they may be too much for Goff to realistically challenge, Goff has led the Lions to new heights that his predecessor couldn't achieve.
Realistically, it could take as little as six seasons for Goff to surpass Stafford's win total, assuming the Lions sign Goff to a long-term extension (as they should). To do so would be the longest stretch of success the team has seen since the 1950s, but with the culture built and quality roster moves the team has made since acquiring Goff, why not shoot for the stars here?
There's an old saying in football, "Winning isn't everything; it's the only thing". Since 1975, the stats say, there isn't a better winner than Goff in Detroit.
Detroit Lions "Winningest" Quarterbacks in Franchise History
Gallery Credit: Jacob Harrison
The 10 Biggest Wins in Detroit Lions History
Gallery Credit: Jacob Harrison