Was Noteboom’s injury a breaking point, or a starting point?
When Joe Noteboom went down against the Carolina Panthers, the LA Rams had to reshuffle their offensive line configuration once more. In fact, that injury triggered a cascade of events. You see, the Rams moved starting right guard Alaric Jackson from right guard to left tackle. And the Rams then inserted newly acquired offensive lineman Oday Aboushi into the right guard spot.
The results were impressive. The Carolina Panthers’ defense is still playing hard. But against the sixth version of the LA Rams offensive line, the Rams OL won the day:
Could it be that the Rams’ offensive line is getting better? You could argue that Alaric Jackson is a great offensive left tackle, as he has proven to be a true plug-n-play standout for the Rams so far this season. With Brian Allen coming back, the struggles with A-Gap blitzes and stunts should be curtailed. And while his first start for the Rams, Oday Aboushi proved to be serviceable at right guard, and should improve significantly with each game.
The Rams’ offensive line handled a tough Panthers defensive front
Against the Panthers, Stafford threw 26 of 33 times for 253 yards, one touchdown, and one interception. But the Rams rushing attack was also effective on the day, as the team rushed 29 times for 111 yards and two touchdowns, a season-high. The Rams’ offensive line for Game 7 is now projected to be:
Alaric Jackson (0 sacks allowed), Bobby Evans (1 sack allowed), Brian Allen (1 sack allowed), Oday Aboushi (0 sacks allowed), and Rob Havenstein (3 sacks allowed).
But the same problem faces the Rams once more. This group has not played an entire game before. So they will undoubtedly be working on communication and cohesion in their preparation to face the 49ers’ defense this week. Game 7 is too close for the Rams to trade for any offensive lineman who could conceivably make a difference.
But beyond that, who could the Rams trade for?