Carson Wentz backing up Rams QB Matthew Stafford is ideal, but almost didn't happen

Carson Wentz, Matthew Stafford
Carson Wentz, Matthew Stafford / Mitchell Leff/GettyImages
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LA Rams, Rams News, Rams roster, Carson Wentz, Matthew Stafford
Carson Wentz, Matthew Stafford / Mitchell Leff/GettyImages

I: One heckuva one-two punch under center

The fact that the LA Rams were content to have a solid starter, but complete uncertainty in the backup quarterback role, was always completely mystifying to me. Was it the lack of basic fundamental football logic that led the Rams powers-that-be to overlook one of the most vital backup roles on the Rams roster? Or was it simply the level of hubris felt in the Rams offense, as though it was so monumentally superior to anything else in the NFL that is was dummy-proof?

The Rams may not get many plays out of Carson Wentz for the 2023 NFL season. But there is certainly a much greater peace of mind right now if that happens. And nobody can rightfully rule out the risk of Stafford reinjuring his thumb, or suffering a brand-new injury for that matter.

While we have focused on the LA Rams quarterback situation, the Rams offensive line has not gone without incident this season. In just nine games, the Rams offensive line has started eight different players. And in some rare cases, two additional offensive linemen were conscripted into playing a series of offensive downs after a teammate was shaken up on a play. Thankfully, the Rams had sufficient depth on the active roster to process the injuries in house, but that kaleidoscope of offensive linemen iterations has taken its toll on protecting Stafford as well.

Will Wentz work out?

I would love Wentz to do well enough to ensure that the LA Rams re-signs him to a long term contract. But there are already indications that suggest that he is currently viewed as nothing better than a temporary bridge for the Rams depth chart. Why is that?

Well, the LA Rams will undoubtedly be forced to use Carson Wentz to run the scout team offense in practices, as the team only has the option of either Wentz or Stafford as quarterbacks on the 53-man Rams roster. Considering the fact that the greater priority is to have Wentz learn the Rams offensive playbook, that all seems to be a bit counterproductive.

But I also have to ask myself: If Baker Mayfield could not persuade the LA Rams to offer up an extension, what exactly is the threshold of performance required for the Rams to extend Wentz? It seems to me that any success that Wentz enjoys with the Rams will raise his reputation, value, and interest among other NFL teams. And yet, if he does not perform well, the Rams front office will have no logical reason to extend him.

It all feels like a bit of a Catch-22, doesn't it?

In the face of conflicting and controversial forces, the best default position is simply to point the compass to true north. Abandon all of the moves versus countermoves that fall into a host of imaginative scenarios. The LA Rams really need a formidable backup quarterback to close out the 2023 NFL season.

Anything beyond that is something that we will simply need to discuss at a later time.