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Rams owner Stan Kroenke eager to see No. 1 pick Jared Goff in first start

The Rams have $40 in cap space, a new coaching staff, and a talented roster. Problem is, the Rams don’t have an experienced quarterback who possesses some upside. Jared Goff, who delivered a 63.6 passer rating in seven starts as a rookie, might develop in Year 2, but what if he doesn’t? What’s Plan B?

The Rams have $40 in cap space, a new coaching staff, and a talented roster. Problem is, the Rams don’t have an experienced quarterback who possesses some upside. Jared Goff, who delivered a 63.6 passer rating in seven starts as a rookie, might develop in Year 2, but what if he doesn’t? What’s Plan B?

(Paul Sancya / Associated Press)

Stan Kroenke broke ground on a new stadium site.

Now the Rams owner is eager to see Jared Goff break into the NFL.

Goff, the No. 1 pick in the draft, will play in the regular season for the first time when he starts on Sunday against the Miami Dolphins at the Coliseum.

“It’s a load for those young guys and the way defenses play in the NFL,” Kroenke said Thursday after the groundbreaking ceremony in Inglewood. “But Jared, according to coaches, he’s progressed and is ready for the challenge.”

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In April, Kroenke signed off on the trade with the Tennessee Titans that enabled the Rams to move from No. 15 to No. 1 in this year’s NFL draft. The cost was steep: six draft picks.

The Rams chose Goff over quarterback Carson Wentz and signed him to a $28-million contract that included an $18.6-million signing bonus.

While other rookie quarterbacks such as Philadelphia’s Wentz and Dallas’ Dak Prescott flourished, Goff sat on the bench for nine games behind Case Keenum.

Two days after the offense struggled again in a 9-6 victory over the New York Jets, Coach Jeff Fisher said he was pulling Keenum in favor of Goff.

Kroenke senses excitement from the fan base.

“It’s like all of us, we have to perform,” Kroenke said in regard to Goff. “But he has the gifts and the talent to do it.

“So he has the opportunity if he’s ready for it. The coaches think he is, and that’s who we rely on.”

Fisher is in the final year of a five-year contract that pays him about $7 million annually. He is 34-41-1 with the Rams, who are 4-5 heading into Sunday’s game.

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General Manager Les Snead also is in the final year of his contract.

Asked about their status, Kroenke sidestepped the question and directed reporters to Kevin Demoff, the team’s vice president of football operations. Demoff has declined to comment on the contract situations of Fisher and Snead.

Staff writer Sam Farmer contributed to this report.


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