LA Rams News: Staley’s Defense betting on versatility for success

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(Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images) /
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LA Rams News Adonis Alexander
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Hybrid defenders

Now, the Rams have gone away from specialists on defense and will stockpile defenders who can play multiple roles.  Now, when offenses set a man in motion, the quarterback will read the wrong defense.  That means passing the ball at the Rams best pass defenders, trying to throw into the soft spot of a zone while the Rams are defending with man coverage. It means running the ball into the strength of the defense.

The long version of this discussion could take up 30 or more slides, and be a very technical discussion of how Staley will combine the best of man and zone pass defenses into the match-zone version patented by his mentor, Vic Fangio. In the Fangio style defense, he dares offenses to run by fielding a nickel package in the red-zone. In order for the LA Rams to replicate that, they needed to load up on defensive backs who can play the pass and the run equally effectively.

The versatility of LA Rams defensive back Adonis Alexander. light. Read

Before the 2020 NFL Draft, the Rams had already dabbled in adding versatile hybrid players. The team added a 6-foot-3 hybrid defensive back, Adonis Alexander, in November 2019 and re-signed him in 2020.  Alexander has a background as both a cornerback and safety, giving the Rams coverage options whenever he is on the field of play.