The first year back as the Los Angeles Rams has been a mixed bag. They started off 3-1 and were the talk of tinsel town, but since then they’ve fallen apart entirely, and they fired head coach Jeff Fisher and turned to Jared Goff, whose early returns don’t have him looking like a first round pick, let alone the first overall pick. There’s a lot to unpack with the Rams as they turn their attention to 2017.
Who is the coach?
The usual suspects have made their rounds, and even some unusual ones (someone floated Seattle letting Pete Carroll out of his contract to coach the Rams… okay). It’s likely they get one of the hot-shot coordinators to coach them next year, and one who focuses on offense and developing a quarterback. The Lions have completely turned around their offense with Jim Bob Cooter, and he has quarterback whisperer Matthew Stafford into running one of the most efficient offenses in the league. Don’t be surprised if JBC is roaming the sidelines in LA next year.
What’s up with Todd Gurley?
Gurley isn’t breaking tackles, he isn’t running nearly as well as he did in 2015, and he has shown he is upset with the offense. It’s hard to run well when nobody respects your quarterback, but it goes beyond that (not respecting your QB doesn’t make you go down on first contact). This could just be Gurley not wanting to get hurt in a lost season, but who knows? He needs to bounce back in a big way in 2017 if the Rams have any hope.
Can Jared Goff take a step forward?
Goff was a punch line almost immediately, as the first glimpse we got of him was on HBO’s Hard Knocks. He couldn’t get anything right, and he didn’t know which direction the sun rose. He hasn’t looked great this year, and the nation saw the Legion of Boom dismantle him on Thursday Night Football. He got knocked out of that game (quite literally) yet again. The Rams need to make sure he starts to protect himself before he gets RG3-ed. If they get an offensive head coach, Goff should be fine.
Can they get Goff some playmakers?
The Rams showed their questionable talent evaluation this year by giving first-round bust and glorified gadget player Tavon Austin a big contract to lock him up as a Ram. Why? He is good for a couple big plays every few weeks but he isn’t close to being a #1 wide receiver. Kenny Britt has done okay, but he doesn’t do anything to move the needle. The tight ends stink. Outside of Gurley, who hasn’t done much of anything with Goff, he is trying to go to a gun fight with a belt full of BB guns.
Is this the last year for Les Snead?
Snead has done a great job at building up a defensive line, but everywhere else… not so much. There has been a lot of draft capital invested in the atrocious offensive line, and they’re a mess nearly everywhere. The Rams already cut bait on Fisher, will they do the same with Snead?