So where is the deficit so far this year?
The defense this year is stronger against the rush than a year ago (the Bobby Wagner effect), but the Rams’ pass defense is a bit behind. Considering the frequency of injuries, and the Rams’ reliance upon rookie DBs, that should not come as a surprise.
The Rams’ offense is where the team has struggled so far. While the Rams’ rushing offense is comparable to last year (fewer yards but an additional touchdown), the Rams’ passing attack is falling behind one year ago by (240 yards), (5 touchdowns) and +4 interceptions.
The Rams are already trending in the right direction because the offense has begun to show life in the ground game, has avoided throwing interceptions, and Matthew Stafford is beginning to connect with more accuracy to a number of his receivers.
Rams improvements are coming
It’s only a matter of time before WR Van Jefferson returns to the fold, before Stafford finds the range on WR Allen Robinson, and the Rams finally unlock Tutu Atwell’s speed and ability to blow the back end off defensive secondaries.
These LA Rams may be sitting at 2-1, but they are leading the NFC West Division, and are improving with each week. NFL Championships are won by the teams that slowly improve over the course of the season, and end their season playing their very best football. That is the trajectory that these LA Rams are on.
Be patient. There are no style points awarded in the NFL. Right now, the goal is to build wins and avoid losses. The LA Rams, despite waves of injuries, are doing that. In the process, the Rams have ascended to the second seed in the early NFC Conference rankings. That is an excellent spot to be for a team that has yet to play its best football.