What Nick Shook is missing
The article presents the LA Rams triplets as Matthew Stafford, Robert Woods, and Sony Michel, and grades the trio at 14th in the NFL. That is lower than the Las Vegas Raiders, the Arizona Cardinals, the Los Angeles Chargers, and the Dallas Cowboys. So what is Shook missing? Plenty by my figuring.
It starts with the way the ranking assesses Matthew Stafford as tied for ninth place among quarterbacks. That ties him with Chargers QB Justin Herbert and ranks him below Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray. Um, no. The argument could be made that Stafford is an NFL Top-5 quarterback in the LA Rams offense. But common sense would place veteran Stafford ahead of Herbert and Murray in 2021.
The Rams’ most likely best receiver in 2021 will be Cooper Kupp, and with a 17 game season, could break 1400 yards this year. That will be good enough to land in the NFL’s Top-10 receivers. Finally, the Rams ground game will be spearheaded by the combination of both Darrell Henderson and Sony Michel. While Michel may have the advantage of running between the tackles, Henderson’s ability to attack the perimeter by running and catching the ball will make him one of the most efficient runners in the league this year.
The LA Rams landed a ranking of 14th this year based on the inability to rank individual player performances from the Rams roster for the upcoming season. After reworking rankings based upon more realistic expectations, the LA Rams should come in on or about the seventh-ranked team.
Keep in mind that these rankings are based on the Top-3 from each offensive category, and the LA Rams have fewer stars but a great deal more very good players on offense. In the end, preseason rankings offer little substance. But in this case, I believe that the expectations of how good this Rams offense will be are significantly understated.