NFL Schedule 2016 Predictions: ESPN Writers Think Rams Will Finish With a Losing Record


The NFL schedule is out and everyone has made their way-too-early record predictions for the 2016 season. Many have the Rams going around .500 and I will have my predictions out shortly, however Nick Wagoner feels about the same as everybody else in which the Rams are still about mediocre as he has them going 8-8. I went through the game-by-game predictions from the ESPN writer for each of the Rams’ 2016 opponents. Here are the results.

Week 1: @ 49ers – LOSS

Feeling nostalgic? Not the 49ers, who, like last year against the Minnesota Vikings, ride a wave of emotion under a new coach and on Monday Night Football to a dominant victory. But will the 49ers have peaked in Week 1, as they did a year ago? – Paul Gutierrez

Record: 0-1

Week 2: vs Seahawks – WIN

This will be the NFL’s return to Los Angeles, and it’s also Pete Carroll’s return to the place where he had so much success in college. The Rams always seem to give Seattle trouble, and they open their home schedule with a victory. – Sheil Kapadia

Record: 1-1

Week 3: @Buccaneers – LOSS

This is shaping up to be a matchup of the two quarterbacks taken first overall the past two seasons. Unless, of course, Jeff Fisher decides to go with Case Keenum or Nick Foles. Reports are that the Rams are leaning toward Jared Goff, who might not be as ready as Winston was to play right away. -Mike DiRocco 

Record: 1-2

Week 4: @Cardinals – LOSS

The battle for the NFC West begins here with the Rams, who most likely will trot out the No. 1 pick at quarterback. After a cross-country trip to New York, the Cardinals’ secondary would be pleased to feast on a young signal-caller. -John Weinfuss

Record: 1-3

Week 5: vs Bills – WIN

On paper, the Bills should win this one. Yet this has the makings of a letdown game after a potential win in New England. The Bills’ first West Coast swing of the season ends in disappointment. -Mike Rodak

Record: 2-3

Week 6: @Lions – LOSS 

The Rams traded up to the No. 1 pick, presumably to take a quarterback. Lions defensive coordinator Teryl Austin should have fun scheming against that. The Rams had a good game plan for Detroit last season, but the Lions should be better prepared for Todd Gurley this time around. – Michael Rothstein

Record: 2-4

Week 7: vs Giants – LOSS

My thing with way-too-early schedule analysis is that we can’t know which teams are going to be good or bad at this point, so the only thing on which we can focus is the travel issue. The London game is a travel challenge for any team that goes, but it’s twice as long a flight for the Rams, who now look as if they’ll also be starting a rookie quarterback. -Dan Graziano 

Record: 2-5

Week 8: Bye

Week 9: vs Panthers – LOSS

The Rams traded a ton of draft picks to Tennessee for the first pick of the draft so they could get their franchise quarterback. But even franchise quarterbacks struggle as rookies, particularly against a defense that has ranked in the top 10 the past three seasons. -David Newton

Record: 2-6

Week 10: @Jets

From a personnel standpoint, these two teams have a lot in common: They’re strong on the defensive front, featuring some of the top linemen in the sport. But at quarterback … don’t ask. The Jets will be facing a rookie, Jared Goff or Carson Wentz. It won’t be a pretty game, but the Jets will prevail. -Rich Cimini

Record: 2-7

Week 11: vs Dolphins -WIN

If the Dolphins are wise, they will stay on the West Coast during their back-to-back games against Southern California teams. However, running back Todd Gurley and Los Angeles’ talented defense will still be too much for Miami to handle on the road. -James Walker

Record: 3-7

Week 12: @Saints – LOSS

We at least have some idea of who the Rams’ quarterback will be now that they’ve traded up to No. 1 in the draft (either Jared Goff or Carson Wentz). Either way, I’ll give the Saints the edge, since they’ll be at home and coming off of a nine-day break. -Mike Triplett

Record: 3-8

Week 13: @Patriots

The Rams will be coming off a road game at New Orleans, so they’ll be getting in their frequent flier miles in a year that they are also playing in London. Whichever quarterback they select at No. 1 could be playing against Brady, making it a matchup of the future — Jared Goff/Carson Wentz — against the all-timer, Brady. Win. -Mike Reiss

Record: 3-9

Week 14: vs Falcons – WIN

It looks like the Falcons will face a rookie quarterback in Jared Goff or Carson Wentz. The bigger issue for the Falcons will be slowing dynamic Rams running back Todd Gurley. It’s not going to be easy. -Vaughn McClure

Record: 4-9

Week 15: @Seahawks – LOSS

The Seahawks get a Thursday night game late in the season. Usually by Week 15 the Rams have been eliminated from playoff contention. – Sheil Kapadia

Record: 4-10

Week 16: vs 49ers – WIN

The last time the 49ers beat the Rams at the L.A. Memorial Coliseum? Gerald Ford was still in the White House. That won’t change this year. – Paul Gutierrez

Record: 5-10

Week 17: vs Cardinals – LOSS

This will be a homecoming of sorts for the Cardinals, who haven’t played in Los Angeles in 22 years. But the Rams will still be the Rams, regardless of where they play or who their quarterback is. Arizona heads into the postseason with a win. – John Weinfuss

Final Record: 5-11

5-11 would be the worst record in the Jeff Fisher era and would likely mean that moving up to the number one overall pick would not have been worth it. It’s worth noting that these writers are loyal to their teams and do have some bias, but given the Rams’ strength of schedule, 5-11 isn’t totally out of the realm.