LA Rams OL coach Kevin Carberry proves adept Kromer successor
When the LA Rams parted ways with long-time offensive line coach Aaron Kromer, it was only natural to feel concerned for the future of the team’s offensive line. After all, the Rams had invested multiple later-round-draft picks in the group but had only drafted one offensive lineman, Tremayne Anchrum Jr., in the 2020 NFL Draft.
Kromer had an incredible knack for getting later-round prospects and coaching them up. Well, that was the task set before him. Of course, he proved his worth when the LA Rams offensive line was decimated by injuries. By season’s end, the team had suffered injuries to four of the five starting offensive linemen, has traded for a starting offensive guard, signed a backup offensive center, and had 11 players get solid experience at playing on an NFL offensive line. The chaos resulted in the LA Rams offensive finishing the season as the 31st offensive line in the NFL per Pro Football Focus.
But that calamity of 2019 proved to have meaningful value in 2020. The LA Rams, loaded with returning players with NFL game experience, were ready to go when the COVID-19 pandemic impacted NFL teams and how they go about preparing for an NFL season. The Rams began the season with virtually the same starting line as 2019, with one exception. Brian Allen was not ready to return from his injury, so the team re-signed veteran Austin Blythe.
2020 unit rebounds
That resulted in the team starting Andrew Whitworth, Joseph Noteboom, Austin Blythe, Austin Corbett, and finally Rob Haventstein. That configuration would change just twice in the regular season. In the second game of the season, Noteboom would leave the contest with injury, and he was replaced by David Edwards. In Week 10, Andrew Whitworth would leave due to injury, and a now-healthy Joseph Noteboom replaced him.
It was a gamble, of course. But it was a gamble that paid off handsomely for the Rams front office. Kromer had coached the battered offensive line from 2019 into the third-ranked offensive line in 2020. That all fell apart in the post-season when the LA Rams lost David Edwards before facing the Green Bay Packers. His replacement, Bobby Evans, was not up to the challenge and the offensive line appeared outmatched in the game.
By season’s end, the Rams offensive line appeared to need an infusion of better depth. Instead, the Rams and offensive line coach Aaron Kromer parted ways. While that was a very confusing turn of events, it set the stage for the LA Rams to hire a new OL positional coach.