A Los Angeles Rams Training Camp Preview
A Los Angeles Rams Training Camp Preview
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Welcome to Rams up a Los Angeles Rams podcast.
We are a proud member of the Pigskin podcast network.
We cover other so Cal Sports News of interest, but we're mostly about your Los Angeles Rams.
I'm your host, mark.
Let's get to it.
Come back Rams fans.
This is Rams up your Los Angeles Rams podcast and man, it's an exciting time of year.
The Rams are back in training camp.
Players hitting the field Sunday 24th closed practices this week. Some practices open to the public beginning next week.
Exciting time, lots to talk about.
We're going to have a training camp preview.
We run through 12 questions, 12 things that I don't know about this team that I need to find out.
And then we're going to wrap it up with a 13th question.
I'm going to talk about the offensive line.
I'm going to have some thoughts on that.
On perhaps our most important.
Unit got some questions there, but in a nutshell, this episode is all about what do we need to find out about this edition of the Los Angeles Rams before we get to that?
Some news and notes.
Hey, I dropped a nice little video on our YouTube channel last week.
The seven players with something to prove.
This week another one come in your.
Way famous ram duos that should be a lot of fun.
Be dropping that mid week, probably around Wednesday.
Go to Rams up common.
Hit that YouTube link, that'll get to our YouTube channel.
Check out some of our videos there and please subscribe as well.
And how about the Rams Super Bowl ring?
Is that a thing of beauty?
As Stafford said, yeah it is.
Really nice looking ring.
Very unique, celebrating Sofi Stadium as pieces of the artificial grass as well as the game ball incorporated into the ring.
Pretty nice, I like it.
I'm a fan, you know, I've been having this mauling the media segment on occasion.
Maybe I should rename it mollien MM Florio of Pro Football talk. I don't know what's with that guy. He wrote an article about the upcoming unveiling of the ring and then after he saw it.
What did he have to say about there?
Common and how awesome it was, how incredible it looked.
Celebrating the Rams Super Bowl win at Sulfide Stadium.
Now he wrote an entire article focused on the fact that the Rams did not.
Acknowledge the Saint Louis Super Bowl victory.
Saying that, the Rams basically showed their middle finger to the city of Saint Louis.
Come on, Mike, you really had to dig for something negative and you found it.
Congratulations, some other RAM news. Van Jefferson had a knee injury. He played the second-half of the season with it. Had it cleaned up and is now ready to go.
I suspect he suffered that in the Texan game.
My special assistant actually commented on that after that game that it looked like he was hurt in that game.
Jalen Ramsey, also recovering from a procedure he had on his shoulder.
Travian Howard was recovering from a groin injury and is now having core muscle surgery, but he should hopefully be ready for the season and Kyren Williams and Quinton Lake, two of the draft at rookies.
Sitting out for now, physically unable to perform.
Hopefully they don't get back on the field soon so they can start competing for roster spots and be contributors this season.
Howard is on that PUP list and Ramsey was originally going to be on it, but the Rams had a change of heart is good to go in a limited fashion if you care about Madden.
I do a little bit.
98 or better Donald in 99 Cup and Ramsey both in 98. Be honest with you. I have a hard time understanding why cup isn't a 99. What did he not do? Well that's what I would ask.
So an interesting stat as well.
This pass rush win rate has been a metric for only five years.
And the 10 best pass rush win rates in those five years top five for a defensive tackle.
All Aaron Donald.
And how about that Kyler Murray contract? Five years, 230.5 million dollars, 160 million guaranteed second highest paid quarterback on average?
After Deshaun Watson of all people.
I think they may have overpaid, but I'm not sure they had a choice.
Andrew Whitworth net came to leave both signed on with Amazon Prime for their Thursday Night Football production.
So it'll be good to see those guys.
I think Whitworth will be granted that I came to leave.
I've seen him a couple times.
A lot of people don't like his style.
I have no problem with it. Actually enjoyed him. You know you're going to get the God's honest.
Truth from my keep phillipe, that's for sure.
And the Dodgers complete a four-game sweep of the Giants, now have a 10 1/2 game lead in.
NL West remember a few weeks?
I said they were in trouble, mostly due to the nonproduction of Muncy, Bellinger and Justin Turner.
Bellinger had a Grand Slam to win one game against the Giants.
Max Muncy picked up his first hit since All Star break, the first hit of this four-game series.
Is average now sitting at 1:55?
We'll be back in a minute with our training camp preview and our approach.
Here is 12 questions that I have about this Rams team and then a 13th question that will follow that all about the Rams offensive line.
Well folks, Ram training camp is upon us and it's that time of year.
Let's talk about the questions we have about this Rams team training camp questions.
These are not my fearsome 4 questions.
I got more than that and I don't have the answers for most of these.
What do we?
Need to find out about this team, hopefully in training camp.
A lot of them.
We won't have an answer until the regular season.
I got 12 questions and then after that a final question dealing strictly with the offensive line as a group will get to that last.
What's my first question question number one? What's up with Matthew Stafford's elbow? I think it's OK. Appears to be on the mend.
Doesn't seem to be a lot of concern about it, but we just want him to be 100% as soon as possible.
Allen Robinson, a new receiver on this team 2/2 at well coming back. Jacob Harris getting involved now hopefully.
Need our starting quarterback in training camp. We need Stafford at 100% as soon as possible so this offense can get to that next level.
The next evolution of this great offense and you have to wonder if Stafford's elbow the recovery from this injury.
Is why they signed Luis Pressey bring Luis Perez back. Remember, he was in camp in 2018. He's out of San Diego, just another camp arm, but maybe that's an indication that Stafford's elbow isn't quite ready and they need run practices with three healthy arms. I would assume now, first. Yeah, camping is.
Reportedly out there throwing but don't have a lot of data points yet. Maybe we can put this to rest, but but we'll have to see question number two last week in my video on the YouTube channel discussing Rams that have something to prove. One of them was 2/2 at well.
And outstanding question about 2/2 is what his role is going to be. How involved is he?
Going to be.
Is he going to compete for that punt returner job with Brandon Powell?
I'm sure he will.
Who's going to win that job?
Brandon Powell was so good last year.
Can they keep both of these guys?
Is 2/2 going to get significant snaps on the offense? I hope so.
So that's something.
To watch watching 22's role in this offense.
As much as the Rams are going to show us in training camp with the public watching.
As I said in the YouTube channel video.
Can he stay healthy?
Question #3 the health of some of these guys. The Walking wounded coming back from injury.
Already mentioned 22. Then there's Cam Akers, who seems to be 100% Jordan Fuller and Tyler Higbee are probably my two biggest concerns.
As I said, Jalen Ramsey cleared for action on a limited basis, but Trevan Howard is on the PUP list as well as two rookies, Quentin Lake and Karen Williams.
That's a little disheartening.
Hopefully that's not a long term thing, but.
Mainly concerned about folder and Higbee.
They are not on this PUP list so that's a good sign.
Hopefully Williams and like get back on the field soon.
Not worried about Ramsey.
Now this one.
Is probably going to come out of left field for a lot of you, but I have a concern about the backup quarterback position.
Rams seem intent on carrying three guys wolfard locked in as the number two guy, Perkins and #3.
Walford, a free agent next year.
I'm surprised that the Rams haven't.
Tried to improve that backup position.
So much rides on the performance of the quarterback.
Stafford needs to stay healthy in my opinion because I don't think either Wolford or Perkins are capable of carrying this team in December.
In January, for example.
But I am curious to see if Bryce Perkins maybe jumps Wolford on that depth chart.
While I think Wolford is the overall better quarterback.
But I think Perkins is that guy that can come in and play that typical traditional backup quarterback roll.
Creating plays off schedule.
Running the ball a little bit.
But bottom line is, I'm surprised their answers stood pat here.
They seem to be happy with their backup quarterback situation.
I am not question #5.
Sorting out this defensive backfield.
What a great problem to have man.
There's a bunch of guys here.
Some good players are going to get cut.
We look at the cornerback position, Jalen Ramsey.
Troy Hill comes back.
David Long played well late in the year.
Robert Rochow, coming back from an injury should have mentioned him earlier when we talked about The Walking wounded.
He was drafted as de Kobe.
Durant is now listed as Kobe Durant.
I draft pick.
I'm sure he'll make this roster then there's dairy on Kendrick, another draft pick in Grant Haley.
Don't count him out.
And safety a similar situation, Jordan Fuller, Taylor Rapp.
All proven starters.
There's Jake Garvice, who has hung around for a couple years now, and two draft picks.
Quentin Lake and Russ Yeast.
So those would be two position groups that weren't keeping a close eye on.
A lot of talent there.
It'll be fun seeing how this all shakes out.
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You know I'm very comfortable with Joseph Noteboom as our new left tackle.
In the back of our minds we have to have a small concern.
If he is the answer for a 17 game schedule in the playoffs that follow, which is what we're expecting, right?
We'll have to watch his performance early on.
I'm very confident he is going to get it done, but there has to be.
A little lingering question in the back of our mind.
Is he good enough to protect Matthew Stafford for another Super Bowl run?
Now we're not done with the offensive line.
We're going to get back to.
Them at the end of this.
And talk about the offensive line as a unit and the questions we might have.
Question #7 has to do with our kicking situation. Our kickers. We got three of them now.
Matt Gay seems entrenched as our place kicker.
Johnny Hekker moves on to Carolina.
Our long time punter is gone.
Rodney Dixon, the free agent punter, comes over from the Giants and then the Rams draft Cameron Dicker now Cameron Dicker.
Was listed as a kicker coming out of Texas on its NFL draft profile.
The Rams list him as a punter.
Which kind of makes sense, because I think Matt Gay isn't going anywhere.
Cameron Dicker will be fighting Riley Dixon for that punting job, but if Dicker wins that punting job.
We only have a role in the kicking game as well.
Will he be kicking off though?
He'd be attempting long field goals.
Will he make the team at all?
So we'll have to see.
I don't bear watching that should be a fun battle.
My money is on Cameron Dicker winning that job as the punter.
And we may see him on kickoffs as well.
So training camps, something to watch.
If you're there, check out those special teams and see what Cameron Dicker is up to.
Question #8 our defensive line rotation. You know we're solid up front top three guys. Aaron Donald a, Shawn Robinson, Greg Gaines.
0 complaints these guys can get it done.
Everybody on the planet knows that.
The problem is behind them.
What do we have?
Well, Michael Hoyt and Marquis Copeland contributed significantly last year.
I don't think they're making any headlines, but they're solid backups.
I was really hoping Bobby Brown would emerge this year.
He's suspended for the first six games.
That's not going to help.
Ernest Brown the 4th.
Coming back for his second year.
I don't know that Rams don't seem to have a lot of faith in him.
Then there's Elijah Garcia and Jonah Williams.
That position group as a whole is fine.
I'm just concerned about the workload for those front three guys.
If our second line guys are just OK man, really disappointed we're not going to see Bobby Brown until game seven at the earliest.
And question #9. It's all about the edge. Leonard Floyd check.
Solid as they come.
Because that Von Miller signing.
Justin Hollins, solid, but not necessarily a great edge rusher.
Terrelle Lewis showed signs of being a very good edge rusher.
This needs to stay on the field after the Von Miller signing Lewis disappeared.
Probably not by any fault of his own, but we haven't seen him produced for half a season, let alone a whole season.
And the Rams might be asking him to step.
Up into that role.
And then there's the two youngsters, Chris Garrett and Daniel Hardy.
Hardy is made an impression on those special team coaches already very athletic.
Ram seemed to love him.
This will be his chance.
This will be his time to step up.
But I'm not 100% convinced the Rams have that number 2 edge rusher in the house.
But overall, the unit is pretty good.
A lot of potential be watching that group closely.
Question number 10.
Well, we haven't talked about the inside linebackers and most of you are probably thinking what's there to talk about.
Ernest Jones and Bobby Wagner.
A young and upcoming linebacker that's played very well thus far, and one of the best linebackers in the NFL over the last 10 years.
Two guys that we're all thinking are going to be on the field for three downs.
But here's the thing.
Bobby has really struggled on passing downs last year. He allowed 63 catches on 82 targets for a total of 596 yards. This is according to next Gen stats.
He's still a top ten linebacker.
NFL execs and peers voted him the 8th best.
Which sounds about right.
He provides experience and leadership.
He's a great tackler.
But he could be our weak link on passing downs affies on the field.
Now that's not saying much because.
We're pretty solid.
Great pass rush.
Good outside linebackers great secondary.
So if you're the weak link in that scheme, does it mean that you're weak?
But it means that you could be the guy the opposition targets.
So Bobby Wagner seemed really going to be a 3 down linebacker.
He's going to have to earn it, but the problem is how is he going to feel about coming off the field after two downs?
I don't think he came over to LA for that.
So that might be a bit of a dilemma for the Rams.
Bobby needs to prove he is still solid in coverage, or at least improved from last year.
I still expect Ernest and Bobby to be on the field most downs, but
It's a little bit of a concern.
Bobby Wagner in coverage.
Question #11 real quick on the running backs. Cam Akers. We did do CS 100%.
Who's backing him up?
Probably Darrell Henderson.
Irene Williams is going to make a run at that number two spot, perhaps.
Where does all this leave Jake Funk and Xavier Jones and Raymond collides?
I'm not really considering Jones and Cole.
I've serious contenders for a spot on this roster in my opinion.
But do the Rams carry 4 running backs?
I think they will.
But if they don't, that puts Jake Funk's spot on this roster at risk and he's created on special teams.
So Jake Funk feature on this team.
Kind of curious.
See what's going to happen.
Darrell Henderson, a free agent next year.
Maybe that's reason enough to keep all four of and question number 12.
What about the tight end room now higby's back from the injury solid there.
Great blocker, good receiver.
Johnny Mundt's moved on to Minnesota.
Bryson Hopkins and Kendall Blanton both showed up very well last year.
Hopkins the better blocker, Blanton.
Perhaps the better receiver, but you have to love what Hopkins showed when he finally got his chance.
Was that enough to convince us that Hopkins and or Blanton are the answer?
And then there's Jacob Harris.
He's coming back from an injury as well.
Haven't mentioned him yet.
Talked about injuries, talked about wide receivers.
Didn't mention him once.
Probably should have.
'cause, as Sean McVay said, he sort of kinda half wide receiver, half tight end.
What's his role going to be?
Is he going to be more of a tight end?
Is he going to be pushing Hopkins and Blanton for playing time, possibly pushing one of them off the roster?
So we don't know a lot about our tight ends.
In my opinion, beyond Tyler Higbee, we can only hope to production matches.
The potential when it comes to these three guys, Harris Hopkins, and Blanton last up.
The offensive line as a group.
I'm going to talk about that in a second.
OK, one last question.
As promised, question number 13 is this offensive line.
Good enough to win a Super Bowl.
Is this offensive line good enough to establish the run game on a regular basis and keep Matthew Stafford Clean?
Now we already talked about Joseph Noteboom sliding in at left tackle.
And we have Rob Havenstein, the new leader of this group, the senior statesman, along the offensive line, David Edwards.
We feel pretty good about them.
They both return and then Logan breasts, and I think the mistake we may be making.
Maybe it's not a mistake, maybe just a.
Conclusion we're jumping to is that Logan breasts is the answer.
Now the Rams were certainly excited when they drafted him.
You could see the excitement and Sean McVay and less need when they made that pick.
But he's got something to prove still, right?
Now there are reports out of the first day of camp that Coleman Shelton was actually starting at right guard in at center a little bit, so not to write off Shelton too early, but.
I think this is going to be breasts job in the end.
And the reason I bring this up is.
Bobby Evans was drafted in a very similar spot as Logan breasts and it got a very similar rating.
Not quite as high NFL.
Com gave him a 6.10 prospect ranking Logan breasts 6.26 very similar comments about them. Their flexibility along the offensive line, athleticism.
And use all that stuff.
But you know Bobby Evans couldn't even hang onto the starting job last year.
We may hear from him again.
I think he's still talented, but.
But we're going to plug in Logan brass at right guard slide Joseph Noteboom over to left tackle.
Lose the leadership instability provided by Andrew Whitworth in the locker room in the huddle on the sideline.
Not to mention, once the ball snapped.
So I'm not trying to be a negative Nancy here again, but.
You know it has to be a little bit of a concern, right? I think this offensive line is going to get it done, but I'm not 100% convinced I need to see it happen.
And by the way, a little fun fact about this offensive line, the Rams are one of four teams in NFL who have drafted every one of their starters.
On the offensive line, that's assuming Logan breast takes that starting position, so I feel very good about this offensive line.
Trying to be very positive, I think the Rams know what they're doing.
They've been able to coach up guys as well, but I think we need to pump the brakes on the fact that this offensive line is in place and ready to roll.
I need to see it and when that happens I'll feel a lot better.
About our Super Bowl prospects.
That's going to do it for this episode. Remember you can reach us at Rams up firstname.lastname@example.org. You can visit our website at ramsup.com.
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