The Detroit Lions have no plans to break up the band anytime soon. Fresh off the franchise's best season in years, and with high expectations for the upcoming 2023 campaign, the Lions have begun talks to ensure the team's core remains intact. Detroit general manager Brad Holmes confirmed on Friday the team has initiated talks with quarterback Jared Goff and guard Jonah Jackson's reps on possible extensions.
Goff still has two years left on his current deal. Jackson, a 2021 Pro Bowl selection, has one year left on his rookie contract.
"We've kept open dialogue with their agents in camp, and I think the transparency is that's been good," Holmes said, via the Detroit News. "We'll see how it goes."
Given that his contract is expiring after this season, the thought is that Jackson's deal will be a higher priority to get done. A 2021 third-round pick, Jackson is slated to earn a base salary of $2.9 million this season. To compare, the NFL's sixth-highest paid offensive guards currently make at least $16 million annually, while 13 guards make at least $10 million per year.
Goff, who is still just 28 years old, was named to his third Pro Bowl last year and first since being traded from the Rams to the Lions before the 2021 season. After a decent first season in Detroit, Goff and the Lions were significantly better last season. Goff started every game and completed 65.1 percent of his passes for 4,438 yards and 29 touchdowns. He led the Lions to a big Week 18 win in Green Bay that clinched a winning season for Detroit while also knocking the rival Packers out of playoff contention.
Goff's 2023 cap hit is $31.65 million, which is an extremely good deal given the recent rise in starting quarterback salaries. If Goff agrees to a team-friendly extension, it's fathomable to think that he will remain in the Lions' long-term plans.
Whether or not Goff gets an extension may depend on the Lions' future plans for rookie quarterback Hendon Hooker, who was drafted in the third round following a strong final season at Tennessee. The Lions recently placed Hooker on the team's non-football injury list as he is still recovering a knee injury that prematurely ended his college career.