Rams News NFL: Los Angeles Rams 30-year-old head coach Sean McVay enters first season with the team.



Los Angeles Rams 2017 Season Preview




Chris Ransom follow @DraftUtopia Posted on 7/13/2017.


Los Angeles Rams Free Agency Recap


The Rams got Andrew Whitworth at left tackle and Robert Woods at wide receiver. I really like the signing of Whitworth he gives Goff a quality blindside.



Los Angeles Rams Draft Recap


The Rams didn't have a first round selection. They still got Jared Goff some weapons with Gerald Everett and Cooper Kupp. I'm sort of optimistic about their future.




Los Angeles Rams Quarterback Summary: Jared Goff struggled as a rookie. Offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur was Matt Ryan's quarterbacks coach in Atlanta. Now he is calling plays for Goff and gets to be Sean McVay's understudy while McVay mediates the team by watching over the guys on the roster while his coordinators call the plays.


McVay started out developing tight ends, but when he was promoted to offensive coordinator to turn Kirk Cousin's career around meaning McVay specializes in developing both quarterbacks and tight ends. Former Jaguars offensive coordinator Greg Olson is also the quarterbacks coach in Jacksonville. Goff may end up turning things around because the head coach, offensive coordinator, and quarterbacks coach all have experience with developing quarterbacks. I cannot stress how big of a deal that is after Goff struggled as a rookie.


Los Angeles Rams Running Back Summary: Todd Gurley dominated at running back in 2015 during his breakout rookie season. Gurley had a sophomore slump.


Running back coach Skip Peete is the teams running back coach. Peete is one of the better running back coaches in the NFL. He struggled with Gurley last year, but Gurley dominated as a rookie. This may be a make or break season for Peete as a running backs coach.


Los Angeles Rams Wide Receiver Summary: The Rams have Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp along with Tavon Austin who was their 2013 first round pick. It's uncertain who will play the slot, but you can easily argue these are all slot guys at best.


Eric Yarber has five years of experience as a wide receivers coach at UCLA. Yarber previously served in the NFL, but he's not a good hire if any of these wide receivers want to become #1 targets for Goff. Hopefully that doesn't hinder the development of the wide receivers and hopefully Rams fans remain patient and don't blame Goff if it does.


Los Angeles Rams Tight End Summary: Los Angeles has a two tight end set with Tyler Higbee and Gerald Everett. Sean McVay was a tight ends coach before being promoted to offensive coordinator. Do not be surprised if we see McVay do what New England does with the two tight end set. That's a strong possibility when you consider that he's a great play caller and great at developing tight ends while the Rams have two other guys besides him that can work with quarterback Jared Goff.


Los Angeles Rams Offensive Line Summary: Andrew Whitworth is taking over for Greg Robinson at left tackle. That will give Jared Goff more time in the pocket. Roger Saffold will return as the starting left guard and he is terrible. John Sullivan could be a quality signing at center he could also be a disaster though. Rob Havenstein played his first two years at right tackle, but he's moving inside to right guard. Jamon Brown did well at right guard as a rookie, but he's moving to right tackle.


Paul Bourdreau didn't work out with the Rams. Aaron Kromer might do better as an offensive line coach for the Rams. Bourdeau was a pass blocking specialist, but he didn't have much to work with as pass blockers. The Rams' offensive line was so thin and so dependent on Gurley last season. Kromer was the offensive line coach in Buffalo so his run blocking scheme may cause Gurley to play better in 2017 we'll see.


The Rams were 32nd in points per game, 32nd in total yards, 31st in passing yards, and 31st in rushing yards in 2016. The Los Angeles Rams were the first offense in NFL history to finish in the bottom two in every single offensive category. Even if Sean McVay is too young to be a head coach, the Rams offense will not be that bad under him in his first season. The only way it could get worse is if the Rams ended the season 32nd in each of those 4 categories, and that's practically impossible.



Los Angeles Rams Defensive Line Summary: The Rams are moving to a 3-4 defense. That's the defense that Wade Phillips prefers running. Michael Brockers will play at 3-4 right end. Aaron Donald is playing nose tackle. I love Donald's skill set, but it does not translate to nose tackle at all.


Bill Johnson was the Saints defensive line coach for the past 8 years. They ran a 4-3 defense though. Defensive coordinator Wade Phillips also has experience working with players on the defensive line.


Los Angeles Rams Linebacker Summary: Robert Quinn will play 3-4 right outside linebacker with Connor Barwin complimenting him. You also got Alec Ogletree and Mark Barron at 3-4 middle linebacker.


Wade Phillips is the defensive coordinator he specializes in developing linebackers. Joe Barry is the teams assistant head coach and linebackers coach. He also has experience as a defensive coordinator which is why you have to be optimistic about the linebacker play on this defense.


Los Angeles Rams Defensive Backs Summary: Trumaine Johnson will take over as the #1 field cornerback. Johnson was always a #2 cornerback to Janoris Jenkins before stepping up in a contract year when Jenkins got injured. E.J. Gaines is starting at boundary cornerback with Kayvon Webster retaining a nickel role that he had on the Denver Broncos under Wade Phillips.


Maurice Alexander and Lamarcus Joyner are starting at strong safety and free safety. I kind of like those two as starting safeties.


Los Angeles made the assistant defensive backs coach under Sean McVay in Washington the defensive backs coach with the Rams. He specializes more in developing cornerbacks than safeties.


The Rams defense was bad in 2016, but it wasn't the worst. The Rams were 24th in sacks, 23rd in points allowed, 9th in total yards allowed, 10th in pass defense, and 16th in run defense. The Rams will win or lose games with the play of their defense. This defense has the ability to be a top 10 defense in stats. They showed that last season despite not showing that this year. They just need to get more sacks and allow less points.



Los Angeles Rams Special Teams Summary: Greg Zeurlein and Johnny Hekker may be one of the best kicker and punter tandems in the NFL. Zeurlein has his moments, but he went 20/30 on field goals last season and that's just not consistent enough for me. Benny Cunningham will be the teams kick returner while Tavon Austin will be the teams punt returner. John Fassel has done an incredible job with the Rams special teams unit.




Los Angeles Rams Worst Case Scenario: The Rams go 0-6 versus NFC West teams. As a result they finish in last place in the NFC West matching their 4-12 record from last season.


Los Angeles Rams Best Case Scenario: Los Angeles goes 8-8 and somehow by some miracle wins the NFC West at 8-8. Seattle won this division years ago with a 7-9 record. It can happen, but it's extremely unlikely to occur.


Los Angeles Rams 2017 NFL Schedule


Week
Date
Opponent
Time
Cable Network
Result
Week 1
September 10
VS
4:05 PM EST
CBS
L
Week 2
September 17
VS
4:25 PM EST
FOX
W
Week 3
September 21
AT
8:25 PM EST
NFL Network
L
Week 4
October 1
AT
1 PM EST
FOX
L
Week 5
October 8
VS
4:05 PM EST
FOX
W
Week 6
October 15
AT
1 PM EST
FOX
L
Week 7
October 22
VS
1 PM EST
FOX
W
Week 8
Bye Week
Week 9
November 5
AT
1 PM EST
FOX
L
Week 10
November 12
VS
4:05 PM EST
CBS
W
Week 11
November 19
AT
1 PM EST
FOX
L
Week 12
November 26
VS
4:05 PM EST
FOX
W
Week 13
December 3
AT
4:25 PM EST
FOX
L
Week 14
December 10
VS
4:25 PM EST
FOX
W
Week 15
December 17
AT
4:05 PM EST
FOX
L
Week 16
December 24
AT
1 PM EST
FOX
L
Week 17
December 31
VS
4:25 PM EST
FOX
W


Los Angeles Rams 2017 Projected Record (7-9): The Rams are still a year or two away from putting together a competitive team. Los Angeles could turn some heads and surprise some people. They could also end up losing five of the seven games we projected them to win and really disappointing this team to the point where some would call for Jared Goff to be replaced. The Rams need to stay patient with Goff though because he literally has no offensive line outside of Andrew Whitworth.









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