The Los Angeles Rams schedule for 2017, which officially will come out in one more day, already includes a Must-See TV date.
NFL.com’s Elliot Harrison listed the Rams’ home game against the Philadelphia Eagles as one of his 17 Top 17 games of the 2017 season (h/t Philadelphia’s 24/7 Sports site).
Among heavyweight matchups such as a rematch of Super Bowl LI between the New England Patriots and Atlanta Falcons (the No. 1 game overall) and Dallas Cowboys vs. Oakland Raiders(No. 5) sits the Eagles visit to the Rams at No. 10:
What? You’re not feeling Eagles at Rams? Alright, I get it — Philly probably will finish third in the NFC East, while the Rams might hang around the cellar of their division. Yet, this game is intriguing because it will be the first time we see Carson Wentz and Jared Goff go up against one another. In fact, we rarely see two quarterbacks drafted first and second overall play each other early in their respective careers. Marcus Mariota and Jameis Winston went at it right off the bat. Seriously — it was their first pro game. And it was a blowout. While league observers are excited about Wentz and Dak Prescott having many meetings to come in the NFC East, everyone seems to have blown off Goff. Let’s see what the guy can do in his first full season as a starter.
Such is the plight for Goff, whom the Rams traded up to claim with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft. The expectations on the second-year quarterback to compete with Wentz, whom the Eagles traded up to select second overall.
Unfortunately for Goff, Wentz started the season on fire as the Eagles started the season 4-0. Though Wentz cooled down, he still threw for 3,782 yards with 16 touchdowns as Philadelphia completed a 7-9 season.
The Rams threw Goff into the fire having lost four of five and entering Week 10 with a 4-5 record. With a porous offensive line, a struggling Todd Gurley at running back and a tenuous position for then-coach Jeff Fisher trying to keep his job, Goff lost all seven of his starts, throwing for 1,089 yards with five TDs and seven interceptions.
The game still may not rank as high as Harrison suggests, but if Goff can match or outperform Wentz—and Los Angeles pull out a win—Rams fans will be plenty excited about that game.
That’s what qualifies it as a big game on the Rams schedule.