New LA Rams RB coach Brown signals fullback likely returning to offense

(Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)
(Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images) /
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LA Rams
(Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images) /

Reports that the LA Rams are hiring former South Carolina RB coach Thomas Brown likely signals adding a fullback to the Rams offense. That’s Brown’s specialty

When the last game of the 2019 season ended for the LA Rams, questions began to form over the team’s running game. After all, the team managed to reduce the workload on featured running back Todd Gurley by eliminating rushing attempts. Despite a backup runner who needs touches to be effective in Malcolm Brown, and despite using a third round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft to select big-play back Darrell Henderson, the Rams simply didn’t rush as often. RB coach Thomas Brown may have something to say about that in 2020.

Offensive line problems? Perhaps. But offensive line short-comings show up in both the running and passing game. And the passing game depends heavily upon the threat of a potent running game to get into rhythm.  The problem seemed to be a lack of trust in any of the team’s running backs.  The Rams offense, which had been run-centric, suddenly found itself abandoning the running game.

The effect cascaded across all aspects of the teams game planning.  The passing game struggled at times because defenses could pin their ears back and rush the passer.  The defense struggled as well, because the game clock leaned heavily into their time on the field.  Without an offense that controlled the clock and played from a lead, the Rams defense was forced to defend both the run and the pass.  When the team needed to make big stops late in games to preserve leads, those stops simply did not happen.

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The Rams need to turn  the running game around.  That happens to be right in the wheel-house of new running backs coach Thomas Brown.