There are many questions and storylines following the LA Rams as we head into the 2020 NFL season. How will the offensive line play? Will the running game return to form? Is Tyler Higbee’s 2019 breakout a fluke? What’s the deal with the kicking game?
What about home field advantage? Since Rams haters always say that Los Angeles has no fans, the Rams should not be at a disadvantage. Hopefully the Rams can capitalize on empty stadiums in Philly, Buffalo, San Francisco and Seattle.
How about the ability of the Rams offense to adapt to defensive schemes featuring a 6-1 front? That’s the defense Bill Belichick schemed in the Super Bowl and also drove the Rams fits last year. It’s designed to take away the run and according to Rams defensive tackle, Michael Brockers, is something they worked on plenty this offseason.
Speaking of Tyler Higbee, we saw his volume in 2019 nearly match his career totals up to that point. The increase in targets to both tight ends rose 77 percent from 2018 and I’m curious to know if that trend will continue. Targets to both Cooper Kupp and Brandin Cooks dwindled as the season wore down, while Higbee’s usage spiked. Will this continue in 2020?
Since Jalen Ramsey signed his historic deal to stay with the Rams through 2025, it’s natural to think of our other cornerbacks, Troy Hill and Darious Williams. Both shined in limited action last year, with Hill receiving high praise from Pro Football Focus (who ranked him among the top 25 CBs last year). Since quarterbacks will look away from Ramsey, they will naturally look to Hill and Williams. Is their 2019 success for real or just a blip on the radar?
But what about the offensive line? I lump that position group with the running game and Jared Goff. Simply put, all must improve. The law of averages says they will since the OLine went from top-five to 31st in two years. Regression that drastic is usually followed by improvement.
The running game accounted for 700 fewer yards compared to 2018, which could partially attributed to opposing defenses scheming to clog up the running lanes. This put the game on Goff’s shoulders and he did okay. Look for a bounce back from all three phases in 2020 and answers to all of these questions soon.
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