The preseason hasn’t been kind to the St. Louis Rams, being unable to take home a single victory out of three preseason engagements.
These games haven’t been a total loss for the Rams, though, because they’ve improved as the preseason progressed, and if the offense can get their issues sewn up they could be a force to be reckoned with in their division.
With Sam Bradford at the helm, the Rams have seen an uptick in their production and they have a chance to notch their first win when they take on the Ravens, who were barely ranked in the top 20 teams as far as defense last year. So far in the preseason, their defense has yet to reach such a ranking. With the Rams’ offense in the top ten, it seems possible that they could take advantage of the under-performing Ravens’ defense and get on the road to victory.
The Rams not only have the numbers to be a force in the league, they also have the tools. On the offensive side of the ball, there’s wide receiver Tavon Austin, whose speed proved to be troublesome for the Broncos as he returned kicks. If Bradford and tight end Jared Cook can keep hooking up for touchdowns like they did against the Broncos they could make for a potent combination.
Bradford also has a deep corps of rookie wide receivers to choose from on top of experienced running backs like Isaiah Pead and Daryl Richardson, among others.
The Rams’ defense also has the potential to be strong. After a blocked field goal attempt and two takeaways, TJ McDonald and Alec Ogletree, respectively, have more than shown their worth to the team. Having players that can not only deny points on defense but also put them on the board as well will go a long way to help as the Rams run through their schedule.
Not one to let the rookies have all the glory, defensive vet Darian Stewart broke up a pass in the end zone that closed out the first quarter and prevented a touchdown.
What truly makes the Rams a sleeper in their division is the combination of youth and experience on the roster. There is a wealth of talent that will be spending their first year in the league; and while this means they’re mostly unschooled in the ways of professional football, it also means opponents won’t know exactly how to read them.
Combine that with veterans that have spent almost a decade in the league to school these young players and things start to look more interesting for the Rams.
The Rams have a wealth of talent, young and experienced alike, that make the team a potential sleeper this season. The way they close out the preseason may be a strong indication of how things might progress for St. Louis come the start of the regular season.