Sean McVay was revolutionary. Literally, the NFL has never seen a coach come in and do what McVay did. Immediately turn a QB who was widely considered a bust into the leader of the best offense in the leauge. From first to worst, literally, statistically the 2016 Jeff Fisher Rams were the worst offensive team in the leauge. Now he returns for an encore and the Rams won free agency. Les Snead became the master of the trade giving up his first second third and fifth rounders for four proven pro bowlers. The Rams won the offseason no doubt about it.
Part of that winning is the hope that Jared Goff makes another big jump in year two with McVay. While Goff put up numbers last year he was throwing to the biggest windows in the entire leauge. Year two he will need to focus on improving his accuracy. The young QB could also stand to develop some more pocket presence as well. Goff was an emerging star last year if he continues to trend upwards he could be an MVP candidate this year. The Wentz Goff debate will be the next great QB debate, the new Manning Brady. It’s awesome the NFL has them playing each other again this season.
Goff will have a brand new toy on offense in the form of Brandin Cooks. Last year the offense lacked a skilled receiver that could take the top off and produce big plays on the deep ball, that’s a direct shot at you Sammy Watkins. Returning are Robert Woods who was by far the Rams best receiver last year. If Cooper Kupp makes a jump in his second year the Rams receiving core could be the best in the leauge by the end of the year. The core is more a product of McVay though so they will produce in 2018.
Todd Gurley. Nothing much more to say on the RB front honestly. Gurley is far and above the best back in the leauge. An excellent runner and a decent receiver, though he wasn’t used in a lot of passing packages in 2017. The only major concern I have for Gurley is his workload. 279 touches last year, which isn’t the most in the leauge but close, you wonder if Gurley will remain fresh in 2018. Other than management, which again you can trust McVay with Gurley has no down side and the Rams have the best backfield in the leauge, until he goes down, very little depth on the roster behind Gurley. Blocking for Gurley and Goff the Ram’s O line remains the same.
The defense of the Rams is what most improved this offseason. Wade Philipps basically hand picked guys that fit perfectly in his man to man system and grabbed them. Aquib Talib, who played with Phillips in Denver is still a pro bowl level corner and a glue guy in the locker room according to past teammates. Marcus Peters, formerly of the Chiefs and one of the top five corners in the leauge joins alongside Talib to form a shutdown secondary. Now the scary part. Aaron Donald, the best defensive tackle in the leauge no debate, Michael Brockers, a game wrecker who shuts down the run just about better than any tackle in the leauge. Then add on Ndamukong Suh one of the fiercest pass rushers in the game. This defense is almost perfect. Almost, the linebacking core is sketchy but not bad by any means. Losing Alec Ogletree and Robert Quinn hurt the core though.
The Rams should be considered a title contender. Now that the team has some playoff experience if this team makes it to January look out. The schedule is tough for the Rams and in a division with potential players like the Niners and Cardinals there is no guarantee the Rams make the playoffs, but they should be expected to.
Record Prediction: 12-4