4 worst-case schedule scenarios for LA Rams in upcoming 2024 NFL season

Thursday Night Football, New Orleans Saints v Los Angeles Rams
Thursday Night Football, New Orleans Saints v Los Angeles Rams / Ric Tapia/GettyImages
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III: Too many opponents coming off BYE week

In 2023, the LA Rams had to face four NFL opponents who were coming off their BYE week. That was an oppressive amount of teams, particularly since the concept of the BYE week is to allow teams to benefit from a mid-season break, allow players with minor injuries to rest and heal, and give those players with more significant injuries greater time to rehabilitate and recover to return to compete later in the season.

In 2023, BYE weeks were scheduled between Weeks 5 and 14. No NFL team BYE weeks were scheduled on Weeks 8 or 12. While there are just 32 BYE weeks scheduled among the entirety of the NFL, the Rams faced four opponents after their respective BYE. That seems too far-fetched to be a mere coincidence. Did the NFL schedulers deliberately pit the Rams against BYE week teams out of spite?

Who were the Rams opponents who came off their BYE?

  • Pittsburgh Steelers - Week 7 (LOSS 17-24)
  • Dallas Cowboys - Week 8 (LOSS 20-43)
  • Baltimore Ravens - Week 14 (LOSS 31-37 OT)
  • Washington Commanders - Week 15 (WIN 28-20)

Of the four games, only the road loss to the Dallas Cowboys was not competitive. In the losses to the Steelers in Week 7 and at the Ravens in Week 14, the Rams were very much in the game until the last few minutes.

NFL teams have one BYE week off each season. In any given BYE week, there are four teams that share a BYE week. That is due to the scheduling needs to pair up two teams to make BYE weeks fit scheduling need. To ensure that BYEs can be fully addressed for all 32 NFL teams, there are eight weeks that have BYEs scheduled.

Okay, so let's circle back to this topic once more. Of the eight opportunities for the Rams to face an opponent coming off their BYE, the Rams faced four such opponents. Yeah, that's not right. I'm not sure if the NFL considered the Rams expendable after coming off a 5-12 season in 2022, but they did the team no favors on this front.