What if…? The LA Rams Matthew Stafford era is better than expected?

Mandatory Credit: C. Morgan Engel-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: C. Morgan Engel-USA TODAY Sports /
3 of 4
Matthew Stafford LA Rams News Sean McVay
Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /

The scriptwriters

The next gotta-have in any blockbuster is a solid gold script. And yes, the LA Rams have one of the best scriptwriters, or in NFL terms, offensive playbooks, in the business. But it has always had one minor flaw. Until this date, this offense has been created at the beginning of the season. It was, for lack of a better analogy, penned into each new game -whether it worked or it didn’t work – against that week’s opponents.

Head coach Sean McVay writes an offensive playbook, as well as some of the best screenwriters, assemble scripts. It’s a great starting point for the offense to begin and has great stuff in it. But just as some scenes fall short when filming actually begins, the Rams offense exposed some underwhelming results in recent years as defensive coordinators have found ways to blow up the offensive plays.

Whether giving the Rams quarterback different looks that were confusing, sending defenders in blitzes to limit the time to diagnose and pass the ball, or simply to be very physical which would cause the offense to blink and, all too often, make mistakes. What the Rams offense needed was what all award-winning movies need, a leading star who can improvise his or her lines.

Stafford is the king of improvisation. While past experiences have required the Rams to go back to the drawing board and hopefully have an effective rewrite of the playbook, Stafford can improvise in real-time. Why is that so important? Rather than fall into a pattern of win-win-lose, the Rams can counter defensive strategies this year and maintain a win-win-win pattern. After the game, the Rams can still diagnose what defenses have done and respond accordingly. But the Rams needn’t suffer a loss because the game plan didn’t meet the challenges posed by the defense on game day.