Stafford’s back: Why Rams offense will turn from eccentric to electric

Mandatory Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports /
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LA Rams News Matthew Stafford
Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /

2023 offense outlook

But perhaps even more importantly, the Rams proved that this offense can run with the football. In fact, RB Cam Akers rushed for nearly 800 yards, and his final three games in 2022 resulted in 100+ yards per game. That’s no coincidence.

It was a coincidence that an injury-plagued offensive line and rigid play-calling amplified the offense’s woes. If Matthew Stafford is anywhere close to the NFL quarterback that we suspect him to be, those late-season lessons have all been recorded. The LA Rams will get an instant boost to their offense with the return of Matthew Stafford to Cooper Kupp.

But let’s face it. Defenses already see that coming. Here’s where the Rams can use that to their advantage:

Hit ’em where they ain’t

While the LA Rams offense is improved simply by getting healthy and returning key veterans, let’s hope that the team has done a much better job of self-scouting as well. The Rams have the ability to gear down and run the football now behind the powerful runs of Cam Akers. And the Rams have the ability to stretch the football field with the speed of both WR Tutu Atwell and Van Jefferson.

The Rams no longer need to stick to what they believe the offense is good at. This is a diverse and versatile offense that can run, and pass, and can hit those explosive plays to break a game wide open. And the team needn’t prescribe which option they beat their opponents with. They merely need to exploit what the defense is willing to give to them.

Will it be easy? No. It falls counter to almost everything the Rams tried to do in 2022. But as we know, that pretty much failed in every possible way. So it’s time to dust off an old strategy that worked in the past. Or even draw up new strategies.

The Rams’ offense is essentially still intact. But the Rams need a fresh perspective. NFL defenses have caught up to the Rams’ offense in a huge way. So the Rams must reset their offense once more. Ultimately, this is not an offense that can impose its will on an NFL defense. So they must show one thing and do another. Hit ’em where they ain’t.

The LA Rams starters have a long time to heal up and recharge. But the cannot win on health alone. This team, this offense, has to play a much smarter game. And with Stafford back under center, I believe that is exactly how 2023 will go down.

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