What would a 7.5 win season mean for the LA Rams draft in 2024?

NFL Draft
NFL Draft / Kevin Sabitus/GettyImages

ESPN Data Analyst has reported the current projected win totals for all 32 NFL teams. In a season that has 17 games, the LA Rams are currently projected to be among the bottom half of the NFL in terms of total wins, currently sitting on the fence between 7 or 8 wins. While that may seem optimistic to some, and downright disrespectful to others, what are the implications of the Rams ending the season with a record of 7-10?

Well, to know that, let's first peer at the entire NFL West Division and assess exactly how the LA Rams are projected to finish the season relative to the San Franciso 49ers, the Seattle Seahawks, and the Arizona Cardinals. Based on the projection, the NFC West Division will end up (rounding down on all 0.5 games)

  • Team Record Projected draft position (each round)
  • San Francisco 49ers 11-6 28-32nd overall 2024 NFL Draft
  • Seattle Seahawks 8-9 14-16th overall 2024 NFL Draft
  • LA Rams 7-10 Top 10 pick 2024 NFL Draft
  • Arizona Cardinals 5-12 Top 3 pick 2024 NFL Draft

Of course, if you examine the projected win totals, two things jump off the page. Teams that performed well in 2022 are projected to perform well in 2023. And the win projections presumes that almost every team that competed in the NFL Playoffs in 2022 will successfully return to postseason competition this year. We know from historic facts that is not true.

But for just a second, let's time travel to 2024, with a Rams team that finishes the season with another sub-.500 record, and think what that means for the team and the 2024 NFL Draft.

Shine on you crazy draft diamonds.

For starters, the LA Rams will enter the 2024 NFL Draft with a Top 10 pick, needing to develop a quarterback for the future, and with a draft class that is loaded with talented quarterbacks. That would give the Rams one of the top quarterbacks from a talented rookie class to add to the roster and develop under the watchful eye of starting quarterback Matthew Stafford. So the huge challenge of finding a quarterback to successor Matthew Stafford is solved.

But the Rams will continue to select from among the first ten rookies in each round afterward, too. On Day 2, the Rams can target those positions that need immediate competition for playing time. And with seven projected picks on Day 3, the Rams draft can add talented but raw players who can contribute quickly on special teams, but who will need time and coaching to earn playing time for that 2024 NFL season.

For my part, I believe that the LA Rams will be more successful this season, which could complicate their efforts to draft a worthy quarterback for the future. But whether the Rams succeed in the 2023 NFL season, the team clearly has an eye toward that 2024 NFL Draft as well.

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After seven seasons of not participating in Day 1 of the NFL Draft, LA Rams fans may not be ready for that first day's pageantry. But win or lose, the LA Rams are in great shape for the 2024 season, and the 2024 NFL Draft as well.