Jeff Fisher: Rams 'committed' to Jared Goff, 'new era'

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  • By Jeremy Bergman NFL.com
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The sun rose in the east over Los Angeles on Tuesday -- or the west, depending on who you ask -- symbolizing the dawn of a new day and a new era in Rams football.

After weeks of clamoring from fans and analysts alike for the Rams to sit Case Keenum in favor their first-overall pick, Jared Goff, the team finally made the move on Tuesday, confirming that Goff will start in the Rams' Week 11 matchup with Miami.

Coach Jeff Fisher made clear in a presser that Goff's first start isn't just a test run for the green rookie, but a changing of the guard.

"It don't want to say it's a new era, it's a new start, but in a lot of ways it is," Fisher declared Tuesday. "Jared Goff's going to be under center this week at home against a really good defensive team in the Miami Dolphins, so big challenge ahead.

"We're committed to this. We didn't do what we did this offseason and trade for Jared to just spot-play him over the next five or six weeks. Even though there's people out there saying, 'Well you're doing it now because your playoff chances aren't real good.' Well, no, our playoff chances are still fine. We're doing this for two reasons.

"One, we feel like this is the best decision. Two, he has the chance to help us win football games."

Angelenos had to wait a long 11 weeks into the regular season to see their franchise quarterback take the field -- and it was a long 11 weeks. The Rams offense stuttered, stalled and sagged under Keenum and an underperforming Todd Gurley, failing to score a touchdown in three games, including last week's win over the Jets. After every poor showing on offense, Fisher would adulate Keenum and promise to stick with the veteran, despite his high interception totals and inability to move the offense. He even said as recently as Sunday that Keenum was the starter, but apparently -- and suddenly -- something changed.

"(Keenum) was (our starter) yesterday. He's not today," Fisher said. "It was a progression. It wasn't a spontaneous decision, it was a progression. It's a gut feel, it's not an easy thing. It's a gut feel. It takes time and we gave it time. It's the right decision right now."

Fisher's "progressive gut-feeling" is an explanation more oxymoronic than decisive, but now that the choice to start Goff has been made, few will care about their coach's iffy vocabulary. All that's left to wonder is if Goff is the real deal. The fans sure hope so, and Fisher assures that he will hold his new QB1 to the proper standard.

"I don't go into games having concerns," Fisher added. "I go into games having expectations. And the expectation is he's going to run the offense and we're not scaling the offense down. ... I don't have any concerns about Jared. I just have high expectations for him."

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