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Rams’ Jared Goff out vs. Cardinals after having surgery, Wolford to start

Los Angeles Rams quarterback Jared Goff (16) looks to pass against the Seattle Seahawks during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 27, 2020, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay confirmed Monday that quarterback Jared Goff had surgery on his right thumb and that he will be out for Sunday’s matchup against the Arizona Cardinals.

McVay said that John Wolford will start in Goff’s place. Wolford is in his first NFL season and has yet to register a snap.

Goff broke and dislocated his thumb in Los Angeles’ 20-9 loss to the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday. His status was previously up in the air after he played through the issue, with the wait on a decision if he could put off surgery, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

Goff completed a nine-yard pass to tight end Gerald Everett with 44 seconds left in the third quarter Sunday but banged his right thumb on the helmet of Seahawks pass-rusher Benson Mayowa. The Rams quarterback popped his thumb back into place and finished the game.

After the game, McVay and Goff held off declaring his status before Monday’s announcement.

Wolford, 25, went undrafted out of Wake Forest in 2018. He spent training camp with the New York Jets before being cut. At the start of 2019, Wolford started for the Alliance of American Football’s Arizona Hotshots. In eight games, Wolford completed 63% of his passes for 1,617 yards, 14 touchdowns and seven interceptions. He also ran the ball 36 times for 160 yards and one additional touchdown.

That season earned him another shot in the NFL. Wolford in 2019 was signed by the Rams but did not make the full roster, later being signed to the practice squad. Los Angeles signed Wolford to a futures contract at the end of the year.

He stood out enough over the next year-plus for the Rams to decide not to re-sign backup quarterback Blake Bortles and instead gave Wolford the job. Bortles has spent this season on and off the Denver Broncos’ roster, and McVay said he expects the Rams to sign Bortles off Denver’s practice squad.


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