LA Rams: This year’s defensive line could be McVay’s best ever

Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /
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LA Rams News Aaron Donald
Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /

Mix-N-Match mania

Okay, if one group represents the armored division on the defensive front, what are their counterparts represented by?  The artillery of course. And these are the defensive linemen who can plug-n-play anywhere along the defensive front. These are powerful men in their own right, but their skill set is a bit more diverse than simply hunkering down and staying in one place.

These are the guys who get after the quarterback, the ball carrier, or any other offensive player who can or may move the football for positive yards.  These are the guys like Sebastian Joseph Day, Earnest Brown IV, Eric Banks, and Michael Hoecht. They are able to plug and play over center, off-center, or face off against an offensive tackle. They are the guys who plug holes, shoot gaps, and create a bit of havoc on the line of scrimmage with lightning-fast stunts.

They are the Neopolitan flavor of the defensive front. Sure, they can gobble blockers. But they also have the ability to get after the quarterback with a variety of moves that gives them a quick advantage.  Beyond that, they have the ability to sniff out screenplays and misdirections and create havoc by being that guy who stays home and screws up the play from being in the right spot at the right time.

They are the guys who can be tapped by Donald and move to a new spot on the front, all the while affording their teammate the first choice of where he wants to attack the play. In turn, they get a new angle and can change the tempo of the game rather dramatically by winning their one on one battles much like Michael Brockers and Morgan Fox did in 2020.

The Rams appear to have an abundance of talent on the defensive line this year, and they have one of the best coaches in the business in Eric Henderson to get them ready to compete in 2021. Finally, this season gives the team ample time to train and familiarize themselves with the task ahead. Will this be their best year ever? While it’s still too early to tell, this is one helluva talented group and the Rams have been making progress each year.

light. Related Story. 2021 may be LA Rams Andrew Whitworth’s last year

Yes, this could be their best ever. When Aaron Donald was injured in the playoffs, the Rams were forced to recognize that they cannot depend exclusively on Donald to carry the load. In 2021, the defensive line is far better suited to complement Donald, and well as remain competitive even if he is not on the football field.