If you want to consider the LA Rams as a team that is in the midst of a reset, or rebuild on the fly, then you have to wonder at the basis that the team used to stick with veteran QB Matthew Stafford, WR Cooper Kupp, and DL Aaron Donald. If we are honest, their presence on the Rams roster was intended to be 'weight bearing walls.' But have they served that role?
In the case of All-Pro defensive lineman Aaron Donald, I believe that the reason is yes. But in terms of Stafford or Kupp? Well, Matthew Stafford was injured and unable to suit up for Week 9. But even before his injury, Stafford is not having a Stafford-esqe season. In eight games this season, he has completed 166 of 278 passes (59.7 percent completion rate) for 2070 yards, eight touchdowns, and seven interceptions. He has also been sacked 19 times for a loss of 145 yards. Stafford's current career average over 14.5 NFL seasons is a 63.1 percent completion rate, 3,734 yards, 24 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions. But he is not alone in a sub-standard season.
What's up with Cooper Kupp?
In 2023, perhaps one of the most shocking disappointments on offense in wide receiver Cooper Kupp. While he was out for the first four games, when he returned he has yet to resemble anything close to the 2021 NFL performance when he challenged nearly every NFL receiver record of all time.
It's not as though the Rams are not including him in their game plan. In five games, Kupp is getting targeted an average of nine times per game. The problem is that he is simply not catching the football. So far this season he has caught 23 of 45 passes for 364 yards and one touchdown. That is a far cry short of a 1,947 yards and 16 touchdowns sort of season.
So whose fault is it?