We hear it each week. LA Rams veteran quarterback Matthew Stafford is getting the snot beaten out of him. This year, Stafford has been sacked a sum total of 21 times in just five games. And he has thrown the football 192 times for 134 completions, 1323 yards, five touchdowns, and seven interceptions. Last season, Stafford passed 601 times for 404 completions, 41 touchdowns, and 17 interceptions. He was sacked just 30 times over the course of 17 games.
How about that ground attack? So far this season, the LA Rams have rushed 97 times for 312 yards and three touchdowns. That is the fewest rushing attempts in the NFL. Because the Rams do not run with the football, NFL defenses know what’s coming. Pass.
Not running the football well is one thing. Not attempting to run the football is something else altogether. By not even trying to run, the LA Rams create all sorts of problems for themselves. Here’s what I mean:
Proficiency matters in the NFL
If any NFL team averages 15 yards per run, but rushes just once per football game, after five games that offense will have accumulated 75 yards of rushing offense. But they are running the ball incredibly well. They simply are not rushing often enough to take advantage of their strengths.
That is amplified due to the lack of proficiency at running the football. Think about it. The more that you do something, anything, the more effective you become at it. But the opposite holds true as well. The less frequently that you attempt something, the less proficient you become at it. You don’t want to undergo heart surgery with a doctor who doesn’t perform many heart surgeries. You shouldn’t ride as a passenger with a first-time driver on a snowy road.
Experience is the master instructor. If you have plenty of experience doing something, you likely have a great chance of performing well. That is because not only do you know what you are doing, but you’ve likely experience problems and know the most effective way to troubleshoot and fix those problems as they occur.