5 players who could be nice surprises for the Rams in 2024

Los Angeles Rams Sean McVay
Los Angeles Rams Sean McVay / Ezra Shaw/GettyImages
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V: The center of the offensive attention

While rookie left guard Steve Avilla was just what the doctor ordered in 2023, the new role of starting center for the team is a tall task to levy on a guy who just arrived to the NFL. Now, he is the apex predator on this team's offensive front, the guy who must diagnose and call out protections to his veteran teammates, while serving as the glue for players who have been added to upgrade the performance of this offensive line in 2024.

That places a great deal of pressure on the guy who in many ways is still learning the tricks of the trade. But the LA Rams are certainly both willing and able to take advantage of a golden opportunity if and when it presents itself, and you have to assume that the team had vetted all scenarios in the course of prioritizing their free agency targets.

Rams head coach Sean McVay confirmed that the former LG Steve Avila will be reassigned as the team's starting center for 2024.

"That was really never part of the plan until you realize, Wow, Coleman Shelton voided his contract. We always wanted to get Coleman back. And then by nature of just kind of investing and spending some time evaluating the guard market, you re-sign Kevin (Dotson) ahead of the two-day negotiating period, and then you realize, okay, wow, I had always just assumed he (Jonah Jackson) was gonna go back to Detroit. And then you realize, wow, we might actually have the opportunity to acquire him as well. Hey, Kevin is at right guard, Jonah played left guard, and oh, by the way, this stud rookie left guard that you had, he was an excellent center at TCU."

Sean McVay

I for one think that he is perfectly suited for his role.

Even as a left guard, Avila maintained his head on a swivel, not only ensuring that he was able to account for his assignment at all times, but quite prepared to lend a hand at blocking to his teammates as well. Even as a rookie may not have struggled with blocking assignments, the second-year version of Steve Avila should be fully prepared to handle them.