Topic I: LA Rams running attack is broken
Where is the LA Rams ground game? Well, if you asked that question after Week 1, you had a serious point that needed to be addressed. The Rams ran 18 times for only 52 yards. But since that opener, the Rams rushing attack has begun to twitch. If you pull out that last rush to create the safety, the Rams rushed 25 times for 91 yards and one touchdown in Week 2, and followed that up with 20 rushes for 100 yards and two touchdowns in Week 3.
The Rams have good reasons for optimism with their rushing offense. Not only has the team averaged 5.0 yards per rush and scored multiple rushing touchdowns, for the first time that has occurred since the October 31, 2021 game against the Houston Texans, but the Rams clearly left a touchdown on the football field when RB Cam Akers fumbled the football on the one-yard line.
Clearly, the Rams coaching staff has focused on giving the ground game CPR, and the Rams running backs have generated a new pulse. While it’s far too soon to declare the Rams’ rushing offense ‘back,’ more positive developments are coming online that could help propel the ground game even further into positive territory.
Bringing back the RB committee
The Rams found surprising success running the football in 2020 by combining the complementary running styles of RB Darrell Henderson, Malcolm Brown, and Cam Akers. Unofficially called RUN DMC by LA Rams fans, they were able to end the season among the Top-10 NFL rushing offenses.
No one rusher was extraordinarily dominant. The Rams simply were very effective at finding and running the most effective rusher for any given game. That was one of the reasons that the LA Rams found enough success in 2020 to earn a berth in the NFL Playoffs, and even advance to the Divisional Round, before a loss sent them packing to regroup.
Throughout the 2021 NFL season, the Rams struggled to get a firm footing with their running offense. It was not until the team had lost their third consecutive game and started RB Sony Michel in Week 13 that the turnaround occurred. That stopped the losses and allowed both the passing attack and the defense to regroup in time to win the last nine of ten games.
This season, the Rams are addressing the sub-par rushing offense much sooner and decidedly.
All in all, the Rams have had some areas to address. But if you survey the entire NFL, no team is truly perfect ‘as is,’ right now. Even teams that seemed unbeatable in Week 1 have already suffered a loss through three weeks of NFL play. There are plenty of things to fix on this LA Rams team, yes. But from what I can tell, the Rams coaching staff is already on it.
Patience is a virtue, especially this year.