Goff Watch: Breaking down Jared vs. Wazzu

After essentially taking a week off from Goff Watch after Cal's first-ever true frosh to start a season opener was yanked after throwing seven passes against Oregon, Jared Goff bounced back against Wazzu with a very Goff-like first half.
For those of you just joining us, instead of just throwing QB ratings and crazy yardage numbers at you (which Jared already has plenty of), we're breaking down every Goff snap this season and assigning a +1 for positive plays (5+ yard completions, avoiding sacks to move the chains, etc.), a -1 for negative plays (stepping into sacks, bad passes, etc.), and 0 for everything in between (balls dropped by WRs, runs, etc.).
Here's what Goff's season looks like thus far:
vs. Northwestern..... +14
vs. Portland State... +20
vs. Ohio State....... +13
vs. Oregon........... -7
So how'd he fare Saturday against the Cougars without two starting offensive linemen, four dropped balls from his receivers, and six penalties for 40 yards courtesy of the offense?
Probably like you'd expect.
Here's how Goff's +8 overall day broke down:
Goff had 22 positive plays on Saturday -- 13 in the first half, 9 in the second (and we gave him +2 for both of his TDs). By comparison he had 28 against Ohio State.
- Eight of Goff's completions were between 5-9 yards (and FOUR of those were third down conversions)
- For the dink-and-dunk crew: 11 of Goff's completions were 10+ yards, including the second longest pass play in Cal history (the 89-yard TD to Grisom), and two OTHER 50-plus-yard completions (54 to Harper, 53 on Grisom's other TD). Goff now leads the FBS in 50+-yard completions with 10 on the season.
- One was a 6-yard Goff run -- stepped up at the right moment, and he also slid!
- One wasn't an actual completion: Goff avoided a would-be-for-sure-oh-my-God-how-was-that-not-a-sack sack, then drilled the ball into the ground at Coprich's feet to avoid an intentional grounding and a negative play. It's heady plays like this that are maybe one of the most encouraging things to see from the true frosh.
- Especially when there are more than one of them: One of Goff's completions was a 24-yard (another deep ball!) rainbow to Bryce Treggs after the Wazzu line pretty clearly jumped offsides. Goff tossed up these free plays twice on Saturday: the first just unfortunately was to Drake Whitehurst. Oh and that Treggs completion was also on third down.
- Two were Goff doing something I don't think anyone thought the 205-pounder could do: avoiding sacks from FBS defensive linemen. The first was of the wow variety: with a DE literally dragging him to the ground, Goff chucks a 20-yard pass (ANOTHER DEEP BALL!) to Stephen Anderson. The second was another side-stepping-how-did-you-not-go-down 29-yarder (DUDE!!!!!) to Richard Rodgers.
Goff had 15 negative plays (we gave him a -2 for his INT), to give him -16 on the day. That's fewer than he had against Ohio State.
- Of Goff's 58 total passes, 10 were just poorly thrown balls -- he fluttered one, one-hopped two, threw one a little high, one a little late, one wide, two to no one, one was with some pretty serious pressure coming BUT he had a complete-able window.
- Two were bad overthrows, like, had an opportunity to complete some very, very deep balls overthrows. One miss to Harper probably ends up being a TD, the one to Treggs probably ends up being a 30+ yard gain.
- One was the INT. Le sigh.
- One was Goff stepping into a sack.
- One was a tipped ball where you could see the D-linemen sitting on the pass rush.
Goff was maybe the only thing that went sorta right on Saturday. Fumbles within the 10 from two different running backs (Bigelow and Lasco) killed would-be scoring drives Goff orchestrated, and the drops, OL play, and penalties again put him in challenging situations throughout the day, but especially in the second half with Wazzu nursing a lead and Cal needing to pick up big chunks of yardage in a hurry. He wasn't Batman on Saturday, but he was more Robin than he was Alfred.