LA Rams: 5 ways Matthew Stafford set up to succeed this season

Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /
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Method II. Speedy receivers

The next challenge for the LA Rams was infusing the type of receiver to give Stafford’s deep-ball a suitable target. Stretching the field has always been the desire of head coach Sean McVay, and something he has attempted to incorporate into the LA Rams offense on multiple occasions.

The Rams wanted to stretch the field with Pharoh Cooper, Tavon Austin, Josh Reynolds, Brandin Cooks, and now the addition of both veteran DeSean Jackson plus rookie Tutu Atwell. Which each new wave of the speedy receiver, the hope was for the Rams to find that magical combination of a deep pass to open up the intermediate routes as well as rushing lanes. The closest that the Rams came to realizing that goal was the 2018 season behind the speed of wide receiver Brandin Cooks.

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While the Rams succeeded at the deep ball in that year, the team simply did not have a sufficient of healthy receivers to take advantage of that success. Cooper Kupp fell early to a knee injury, and a young Josh Reynolds struggle to retain possession of passes thrown in his direction. Furthermore, Jared Goff found that his ability to lead a deep receiver properly was less accurate than desired.  A deep incompletion on the first down led to repeated attempts on second and third downs, and that in turn led to quick fourth-down punts that put the defense back onto the field.

With Stafford’s arm strength and a better track record of hitting speedy receivers in stride, the Rams hope to reclaim the threat and proficiency of a deep pass in this offense. That will help this offense in two ways. First and foremost, it will allow the offense to explode with a burst of points to create and extend leads very quickly over the course of a game. Secondly, it will force defenses to throw fewer bodies into the box, lending a hand to both the blocking and rushing lanes that are so important to maintain a balance in this offense.