Fragility of 5 Rams veterans can open door for backups to earn starting roles

Matthew Stafford, Cooper Kupp, Tyler Higbee, Los Angeles Rams
Matthew Stafford, Cooper Kupp, Tyler Higbee, Los Angeles Rams / Harry How/GettyImages
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How have Rams improved their roster for 2024?

In the past, the team had unwisely banked on the capability of all starters to stay healthy for an entire season. Over time, painful lessons proved that approach results in disastrous outcomes if injuries happen. As the roster was depleted by injuries, the coaching staff was horrified to discover that the players who were being groomed and developed for future starting or rotational roles for the team had plateaued long before achieving those lofty marks.

In 2022, that was undeniably apparent as the front office found itself scrambling to sign veteran players to join the team and be given a crash course in the Rams playbook That was not only the case for the team's offensive linemen, a group that had to add multiple veterans who all would start for the team that year. It was also true for the backup quarterback role, a situation that required veteran quarterback Baker Mayfield to deplane and just hours later lead the team to a miraculous come-from-behind victory.

Just hours after getting off the plane.

Similar circumstances hit in 2023 when the team suffered injuries to both RB Kyren Williams and to backup RB Ronnie Rivers. In response, the team signed several promising veteran running backs, and sorted through the group to determine the best possible option for the team to bridge the gap until Williams could return to the active roster.

It would seem that the team has taken steps to avoid signing guys off the streets who will be expected to learn the team's playbook instantly to the point of suiting up and starting as quickly as possible. So, who are the teams unsung potential heroes?