While the LA Rams may be sitting at home watching the NFC and AFC Championship Games today, there is nothing saying that LA Rams fans have to sit quietly and respectfully as players who love to bend the rules or run their trash-talking mouths have plagued the Rams in recent history.
You know who I’m talking about, don’t you? The guys you love to hate on the opposing team. Not because they are incredibly talented (many are) or extremely productive (many can be that as well), but because they are the guys who love to take cheap shots, and late hits, taunt the Rams on every good play, and after good games. Simply stated, they are the dirty or blow-hard players whose idea of fair play resembles the interview promotions for a World Wide Entertainment (WWE) Pay-Per-View event.
Like who? I can think of four such players who love to bend the rules, flap their gums, or simply be idolized by national media for simply doing their job. Here are my four top Rams villains I’d love to see have a horrible game today:
WR Jamar Chase
The NFL media loves to anoint the next star wide receiver, and they wasted no time jumping on the Jamar Chase bandwagon. He certainly had an excellent rookie season, but that was amplified by the Rams-inspired offensive playbook of the Cincinnati Bengals. His 2022 NFL season showed, not an improvement, but a regression.
I don’t loathe the guy. I’m just not buying the promotion that he is as good as the ESPN analysts believe him to be. A nice humbling game would do him wonders, and be music to my ears.
WR/RB Deebo Samuel
Whenever I am down, I love to replay that bone-jarring hit that LA Rams safety Nick Scott put on RB/WR Deebo Samuel. Samuel benefits from a well-designed offense that masks his role, whether it is a wide receiver lining up in the backfield, or as a running back lined up in the slot or H-Back spot, he gives the San Francisco 49ers an element of surprise. And after almost every positive play, and win, he loves to yap. Whether that is to an open microphone or on social media, he just runs his mouth.
Sure he’s talented. But I can’t cheer for a trash-talker. He gives himself so much praise that there is simply no room left for compliments. I’d love to see him be tackled hard, and legally today. Perhaps he will be as ineffective after a hard tackle today as he was in last year’s NFC Championship Game.
QB Joe Burrow
Bengals QB Joe Burrow was a likable young quarterback when he entered the NFL. Marketed as a young man puffing on a stogie, he was the poster child of blue-collar labor and working hard. But he is running a very pass-friendly offense, and this is just his third NFL season for the Bengals. After his rookie contract expires, he gets paid, and he is forced to compete with less expensive talent elsewhere on the roster, then we’ll see if his blue-collar image is earned or just a marketing tool.
I don’t dislike the guy. But he’s just a good QB to me.
49ers linebacker Dre Greenlaw is a dirty player. I’ve seen him take cheap shots after the whistle, from the backs of players, and in any number of no-no scenarios. Here is one where he tries to twist the head off of an already tackled Rams RB Cam Akers. Here is another helmet-to-helmet hit by Greenlaw on Chargers QB Justin Herbert. Unfortunately, he plays on both sides of the rules for the 49ers’ defense, and they seem to encourage that in him.
In the end, he is not the type of player I want on the LA Rams roster. I don’t like cheap shots.
Did I omit anyone? Which player do you believe is a ‘villain’ who you are cheering against on NFL Championship Sunday?