Los Angeles Rams coach Sean McVay has been more cautious than most of his peers in how he has used his starters during t

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Los Angeles Rams coach Sean McVay has been more cautious than most of his peers in how he has used his starters during t

Postby linchao » Tue Nov 27, 2018 3:50 am

The starting offense Jack Youngblood Jersey Black Friday , save for right guard Jamon Brown, will not play at all in the four exhibition games. The starting defense, save for outside linebacker Samson Ebukam, made a brief appearance in the third preseason game Saturday.Whether that approach will cause problems once the season starts remains to be seen. It’s worked out in at least one respect, as McVay said Monday the Rams are on track to be healthy for their season opener at Oakland on Sept. 10. And players have been happy with McVay’s caution, with running back Todd Gurley saying he was living “everyone’s dream” by not playing in the preseason.McVay seemingly felt so comfortable about the strength of his team that he made an unprompted reference to defensive tackle Aaron Donald’s ongoing holdout.“We’re right on track with guys like (linebacker) Mark Barron that we have talked about. Everybody else we anticipate that we’re kind of projecting as a starter is ready to go. Obviously, the big question is will 99 (Donald) be a part of that thing or not? But we’re in a good place right now. Certainly we’ve got a lot of work to do in the meantime,” McVay said.The Rams, who are seeking to defend their first NFC West title since 2003, will continue to hold out starters and key reserves for their preseason finale at New Orleans on Thursday.McVay put defensive lineman Dominique Easley and outside linebacker Matt Longacre in that group. Easley did not play last season because of a torn ACL in his right knee, and Longacre missed most of training camp because of a biceps injury after undergoing back surgery last season.Both Easley and Longacre are expected to play major roles this season with the Rams still unsettled on the edge opposite Ekubam in their 3-4 defense. McVay was glad to see both get on the field against Houston because it was a milestone in their recoveries.“It was good for both those players to get some snaps, and now we’ll implement a program that we feel like is going to be sustainable throughout the course of the season, but we won’t expect to see them this week,” McVay said.Tight end Gerald Everett Torry Holt Jersey , who sustained the most notable injury of training camp when he hurt his shoulder, is in line to play against the Raiders. McVay said Everett is running routes again, and the second-year South Alabama product was able to maintain his conditioning despite being in a sling for several weeks.The only lingering question in terms of health is the status of outside linebacker Ogbonnia Okoronkwo. McVay said the fifth-round pick from Oklahoma is likely to start the season on the physically-unable-to-perform list after sustaining a foot injury during offseason workouts that required surgery. Starting the season with that designation would prevent Okoronkwo from practicing or playing for the first six weeks.“I would say not anything that he can control, but I think just the way the foot has responded hasn’t been ideal. It doesn’t have anything to do with the way that he has worked,” McVay said.Without major injury concerns, McVay has been able to focus on how to construct the 53-man roster and the 46-man game day roster. Putting together contingency plans in case of injury during the regular season is also a priority for McVay, whether that comes from the composition of the practice squad or from identifying players that could return as free agents.“Unfortunately, like we’ve talked about, injuries are an inevitable part of this thing and we’ve always got to have those contingency plans in place, but we feel good about a lot of the spots right now,” McVay said.While the Rams look to have their starting lineups set, McVay said many of his conversations with general manager Les Snead at this time of year center on players around the league that could be cut by other teams and how they might fit in.“If they end up hitting the waiver wire, do they give us an upgrade or do we feel good about the spots? And, fortunately Eric Dickerson Color Rush Jersey , most of the spots and situations and positions that we’re in, we feel good about the guys that we have in our building,” McVay said. “Hopefully we’ll stay healthy and be able to work with those guys.” Like my emotional issues, the New Orleans Saints offense is multi-layered and a lot to unpack. They have a great passing game with Drew Brees, a solid, two-back running game with Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara and an X-factor in former BYU product Taysom Hill. While they struggled in the first two weeks of the season, the Saints offense is as good as ever and is primed to take advantage of the Los Angeles Rams defense. Brees can throw, the offense can take advantageThe Saints are on third-and-two. They have two running backs capable of getting those two yards. Yet the Saints go aggressive in the first quarter with a 20-yard shot. Drew Brees can put the ball where it needs to be and leads the league in completion percentage. That’s not to say he can’t make mistakes, either. During the Vikings game, Brees forced a throw midway through getting smacked by an unblocked edge-rusher. The throw went right into the hands of Harrison Smith. This play is similar to what the Rams ran against the Green Bay Packers last week. It’s a simple in route across the middle, but the offense takes advantage of the large amount of space in the second level. The pockets of space the Vikings gave the Saints on this play and others is what the Rams defense is sometimes guilty of doing. The linebackers have questionable zone-coverage awareness and often let plays like this through. And it doesn’t always have to come from routes across the middle, either. The Saints have Kamara make a cut up the middle for a 17-yard gain. The linebacker gives space and gets burned on the run after the catch. This is a third-and-12, so it’s understandable why the Saints can find some space. However, the Ravens allowed two receivers to get open near the first down marker. Benjamin Watson cuts towards the sideline while another receiver gets open across the middle (the receiver furthers from the line of scrimmage). Kamara and Ingram can do it allThe pair have proven they can do whatever is asked of them https://www.ramsfanstore.com/Marshall-Faulk-Jersey , whether it be running the ball on short-yardage situations or getting involved in the passing game. New Orleans have played stout run-defenses the last three weeks with two of them (Washington Redskins, Vikings) being among the Top-10 in the league. While the running-game is slow at the start of the game with one and two yard gains (and sometimes losing yards) Ingram and Kamara are capable of grinding out chunks when needed. This is on fourth-and-two. Saints try to show they’re passing, yet run Ingram up the middle. He breaks through the bodies of two defensive linemen. Ingram gains five yards. The Rams have the No. 16 run-defense in the league. Since Oct. 7, the defense has allowed at least 135 rushing yards or more every game. In the last two games, the Saints have been relatively unsuccessful rushing the ball outside of the guards. With Cory Littleton and new-Ram Dante Fowler, the Rams defense can keep the Saints unsuccessful in those areas. Taysom Hill and the RPOThe Saints will use third-string quarterback Taysom Hill just about everywhere. He’s played quarterback, he’s been used as an extra blocker and lined up at receiver. The Saints mix in quite a few RPO’s with Hill. When he’s on the field, the Rams defense needs to be alert because he or Kamara (normally the running back lined up when he’s on the field) will be picking up a big chunk of yards. When the Saints played the Redskins, they were still working on this aspect of their offense and when they play the Rams, it still not might be at its strongest potential. That’s a scary thought. Against the Redskins, it became apparent the RPO’s with Hill needed some work. New Orleans had third-and-short against the Redskins and instead of handing the ball to Kamara, Hill kept the ball for the first down. If Kamara kept the ball, it’s a 50+ yard touchdown.

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