The way the story should have gone so far for this young LA Rams roster? Well, the offense was essentially intact, and that was interpreted as an offense that would flirt with a Top-3 NFL scoring offense. The raw defense, on the other hand, was supposed to be awkwardly inexperienced, and allowing almost as many points to be scored on them as their offense was scoring.
Now, after three weeks, you can thank a pair of Rams rookie defenders for not following the script. Entering Week 4, the LA Rams' young defense is showing up pretty well. In all honesty, this Rams defense is about three months ahead of schedule. The Rams have allowed just 284.7 yards per game (7th best in the NFL), 20.7 points per game (13th best in the NFL), 103.7 rushing yards per game (13th best in the NFL), and 181.0 passing yards per game (7th best in the NFL).
Young defense with rising stars
While it's not as though the Rams are shutting down opponents, they are doing an admirable job considering that this is a defense that is made up of unrecognizable players (with the exception of All-Pro defensive lineman Aaron Donald). Perhaps even more impressive is the fact that this Rams defense is getting it done without a dominating pass rush. After three a games, the Rams have mustered only five quarterback sacks. That is only good enough for 24th best in the NFL.
While there is a bit of anonymity to to this Rams defense, their results are easily recognizable. And no, this is not fool's gold based on a defense that has been kicking the backside of bad offenses. The LA Rams have faced the San Francisco 49ers (3rd ranked offense), the Seattle Seahawks (4th ranked offense) and the Cincinnati Bengals (28th ranked offense).
So far, so good. But is it simply a matter of great bounces from the football? Or have the LA Rams hit big on their rookie draft class from 2023? While the results are a bit early, indications are that the Rams defense is getting tremendous production out of a pair of young rookies whose energy is only matched by their desire to play physical football. So, who are these wunderkinds? Let's take a look: