LA Rams 5 regressing players who must show up big after bye week

Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports /
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LA Rams Josh Reynolds

WR Reynolds

This could very well be WR Josh Reynolds‘ last season with the LA Rams. Long-held as a fan favorite who just needed a chance, 2020 is exposing Reynolds as a player who struggles to catch passes. That’s not something new, as Reynolds’ career has averaged no better than a 52.5 percent completion rate. That all seemed to change early in 2020, as through three games, the Rams young receiver came down with seven of eight passes.

Then, as with other players, the wheels came off the wagon. Over the remaining five games, the Rams threw more often to Reynolds.  30 times to be exact. But he only caught 15 of those passes, to plummet back to his career average of 50 percent. While he is still on track to surpass his yards receiving of his career, the spotlight seems to have dulled his abilities. The more work the Rams have given him, the less he has performed.

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Future considerations

The LA Rams have been featuring Reynolds far more in the passing game than rookie teammate Van Jefferson. With Reynolds’ inability to catch passes more often, I expect the Rams to give Jefferson a greater role in their offense going forward. So far, the Rams have been coddling their rookies too much, expecting veteran-level play on the football field, while the team’s mini-slump has dropped them from a very promising 4-1 record to a lesser midpoint of 5-3.

At one point, I held the hope that Reynolds could prove to be ‘the guy’ on offense who can stretch the field. In some ways, I believe that he still can play a mighty role in this offense, albeit a role that requires fewer snaps and better production.  The Rams will play the Seahawks twice, the Cardinals twice, the Patriots, Jets, 49ers, and Buccaneers.  To win, the Rams will need players to step up on offense.  Whether or not Reynolds plays for the Rams in 2021, he will need to play better in these final eight games to ensure he is part of an offense next season.