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  • Rams Pro Football Focus

    Rams Pro Football Focus tidbits heading into Week 3

    Pro Football Focus (PFF) has a team of more than 300 staffers evaluating every NFL play from the Hall of Fame game to the Super Bowl. After each game, players, as well as each team's offensive, defensive and special teams units, are graded on a scale of 0 to 100; the closer a player or unit is to 100, the better. A full explanation of their evaluation process can be found here for additional context.

    Here's a look at some of the noteworthy Rams-centric assessments based on PFF's evaluations through the first two weeks of the season.

    PFF breaks up its passing direction charts in three parts: Outside Left, Between Numbers and Outside Right. Between Numbers, or the middle of the field, is where Rams QB Jared Goff has had the most success.

    According to PFF, Goff has completed 25 of 34 passes between the numbers, good for a completion percentage of 73.5. He was 13 of 17 in the same category against the Saints.

    Goff also fared better against the blitz in Week 2 with a passing grade of 82.7 in that category compared to 57.7 in Week 1. He was 6 for 6 and gained 120 of his 283 passing yards when New Orleans blitzed last Sunday.


    Head coach Sean McVay said earlier this month that versatility at the tight end position is critical to what the Rams want to do on offense. Tight ends must make plays in the pass game, be able to compete on the line of scrimmage in the run game and do some different things in terms of protection. Tyler Higbee's ability do those things on all three downs is what makes him valuable to that unit, according to McVay.

    Higbee, L.A.'s starting tight end, is currently day-to-day with a lung contusion. If he is unable to play against the Rams, Pro Football Focus' recent evaluations suggest Gerald Everett will be able to seamlessly take his place.

    Everett graded out as the Rams' second-best pass-blocker and run-blocker against the Saints. He also posted the second-highest offensive grade out of the eight L.A. receivers targeted by Goff.


    Leading into the season-opener at Carolina, L.A. defensive coordinator Wade Phillips said safety Taylor Rapp is proving to be exactly the player the club thought he was when they chose him in the second round in this year's draft, praising his short-area quickness and tackling ability.

    Both have been on display through the first two weeks of the season.

    Rapp posted the fifth-best tackling grade of any Rams defensive player in Week 1, then followed it up with the third-highest mark in Week 2. He's also had the fourth-best coverage grade in each of Los Angeles' first two games.

    The Rams are deep in the secondary, but Rapp's consistency should keep earning him chances to see the field.

    Keeping the Rams Nation Talking

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  • viper
    Goff, Whitworth Named to PFF Preseason Team of the Week
    by viper
    Posted Aug 21, 2017

    Kristen Lago Rams Writer/Reporter @kristennlago

    It may be the preseason where the final score holds no real weight long term, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t still a lot to analyze and evaluate from each of the four exhibition matchups. One of the most respected sites for those player grades and examinations is that of Pro Football Focus.

    Each week, Pro Football Focus grades all players to take a snap in game action — putting together a list of the week’s top performers at every position. And after the Rams defeated the Raiders 24-21 in Week 2 of the preseason, PFF named two of the team’s starters to their Team of the Week.

    First up on the list is quarterback Jared Goff . Here is what they had to say about the second-year quarterback, who earned an 81.1 overall grade.

    “For the first time in his short career, Goff showed some of the enticing traits that led to the Rams selecting him first overall in 2016. While his short passing game was near-perfect (he completed 16-of-18 attempts of less than 10 yards), he was excellent downfield and outside the numbers. On outside throws that travelled at least 10 yards through the air, he connected on 3-of-5 attempts for 54 yards and a touchdown.”

    Left tackle Andrew Whitworth was the other member of the Rams’ offense to nab a spot of the list. PFF had very positive things to say about the veteran lineman, who earned a solid 76.8 overall grade.

    “Whitworth proved his worth during Week 2, paving the way to the 13th-highest run block grade among tackles at 81.2. He did not allow a single pressure on 11 pass block snaps of Rams QB Jared Goff’s 22 total dropbacks. Whitworth has not allowed a single pressure this preseason on a total of 15 snaps in pass protection.”


    Its nice to see the Rams get a little love for a change! I'm looking forward to more to come. I think we made a great choice for our coach and everyone that he has brought in. I think this is the year that we compete like we've all been hoping for.

    Go Rams!!!

    -08-22-2017, 01:40 PM
  • MauiRam
    Rams burning question: Can Sean McVay make Jared Goff a poor man's Kirk Cousins?
    by MauiRam
    Cousins is pretty rich, so that wouldn't be the worst thing in the world

    Rookie seasons are rarely memorable for NFL quarterbacks, but Jared Goff's first shot as an NFL signal caller was entirely forgettable. He rode pine until late November, with Rams coach Jeff Fisher stubbornly sticking by Case Keenum. When he finally got the starting job, Goff went 0-7, was a little lucky to complete 50 percent of his passes and threw just five touchdown passes, three of which came in one game against the Saints.

    Fisher was fired midseason and the Rams cleaned house after 2016 ended, all while watching the Titans select a talented wideout with the top-five pick that the Rams handed them as part of last year's Goff deal. The Rams' next hire was a critical one and they went uber young with it, bringing 30-year-old Sean McVay over from Washington.

    (The Rams are back at training camp! Don't MISS anything as they prepare to try and make the playoffs -- take five seconds to Sign up for our Free Rams newsletter now!)

    Make no mistake, McVay's hire is about turning Goff into a legitimate quarterback. McVay's tutelage in Washington turned Kirk Cousins into the ultimate conundrum: a quarterback who plays well enough you have to pay him but not well enough to commit past massive single-year franchise tag deals.

    A lot of what you see with Goff and the Rams from 2016 is a case of Los Angeles putting major reigns on their rookie quarterback and limiting what he can do with a particular play. There are four guys running routes here but only one of them is really in play here. Goff is throwing to Tyler Higbee. via NFL GamePass
    It's not surprising for an offense to put a cap on a rookie early on and for coaches to limit the amount of things a player has to worry about, but Goff was so obviously locked into a single target that he was sometimes throwing before he finished his drop. via NFL GamePass
    Again, there are four routes being run but three of them might as well be decoys. This throw, by the way, resulted in a 19-yard completion and even set up a 24-yard Todd Gurley touchdown run. But let's not get too caught up in results. Everything about the gameplan in Goff's first start -- Week 11 against the Dolphins -- was rudimentary to the nth degree.

    The creativity level was about what you would expect out of the worst offense in the league. The Rams averaged a measly 14 points per game and trailed even the 31st-ranked Jets by a healthy margin in DVOA. On a critical 3rd-and-4 play call against Miami, with the Rams leading 7-0 and 2:32 left in the second quarter, here's what Goff saw at the top of his shotgun drop. via NFL GamePass
    It looks like rush hour between the hash marks. Ndamukong Suh ripping through the offensive line didn't help matters and it resulted in a sack. Pressure was a problem for Goff, who finished the...
    -08-10-2017, 01:22 AM
  • Nick
    La Canfora: Keeping Jared Goff healthy a priority for Rams, who lack QB depth
    by Nick
    2018 NFL Training Camps: Keeping Jared Goff healthy a priority for Rams, who lack QB depth
    By Jason La Canfora 12h ago • 7 min read

    OWINGS MILLS, Md. – A year ago at this time, entering their preseason opener, the chore for Rams then-rookie head coach Sean McVay was pretty simple: Get Jared Goff as many reps as humanly possible to immerse him in this offense, rebuild his confidence and make him forget about his shaky rookie season.

    Now, well, the situation is quite different.

    Goff had a strong 2017 season – just the latest young quarterback to blossom under McVay's tutelage and play calling – and he appears at ease in this offense as the Rams have suddenly gone from playoff afterthoughts to potential Super Bowl hopefuls with a reloaded roster and heavy expectations. And it just so happens that one of the few roster spots not teaming with experience and depth is at backup quarterback, where the assembled group of three passers behind Goff have combined for 50 career NFL attempts, one start, and zero touchdowns. It's not exactly teaming with options should Goff miss a few games, and McVay is now charged with protecting Goff through the preseason – where he undoubtedly will end up playing less than last summer – and cultivating something from the group of backups (Sean Mannion, Brandon Allen and Luis Perez) in case of emergency.

    McVay and his staff are going over that mental calculus this week, with their joint practices with Baltimore over at the Ravens' practice facility and the preseason opener at M&T Bank Stadium looming Thursday night. With Goff now established in this offense, the days of him taking expanded reps with the second-string offensive line are probably over, while Mannion (a fourth-year pro who has accounted for all 50 of those NFL pass attempts I mentioned) is now an injury away from trying to prop up a team with Super Bowl aspirations

    "The thing that is tricky, especially with some of the starters is," McVay told me, "when you are talking about a guy like (left tackle) Andrew Whitworth, who is going into year 13, now if you don't play him then how comfortable do you feel with putting Jared out there? So it's a lot of layers to it, to where when you want to rest somebody else then it affects how you operate …

    "I'm really having a tough time – and we've talked about this as a staff – at how do you balance the dynamic between getting those preseason reps, and then, what the risk that potential could come from if something happens. And you can't do that – you can't be scared – but you also want to be smart and mindful of, those couple snaps, does it make a difference in how sharp he can be and can you try to mimic and emulate those game-like situations and limit the risk? And those are things that, I'll be honest, I struggle with and continue to learn. And as you get more experience you maybe have a more clear-cut philosophy."...
    -08-08-2018, 08:04 PM
  • MauiRam
    The California Cool of Jared Goff
    by MauiRam
    In the midst of a wild three-year career arc that has taken him from rookie bust to MVP candidate, the Rams quarterback has learned to enjoy the ride. How far can his surge lift L.A.?

    Not long ago, the keepers of football's sacred texts detected a tragic flaw. The college game was spreading out and speeding up. It had become too simple, too bloodless -- and the repercussions could cripple the NFL. What they were witnessing was an insult to the thousands of men who sacrificed their bodies and brains on the game's altar. A quarterback standing 15 feet behind the center, catching a snap and throwing the ball to a receiver before the defense could even react? This was an act of pure expedience, a shortcut in a sport that does not abide them. Who was left to teach a young quarterback to nudge up close to the center, put his hands in another man's haunch and take a proper snap? A quarterback should be close enough to feel fear, and to smell a nose guard's rancid breath, and the suggestion that these gimmicky offenses would work in the NFL -- against grown-ass men, they thundered -- was an affront to the legacies of every great American who ever took the time to teach a man the seven-step drop.

    But one by one, the thundering old men were replaced by younger men who identified an opportunity within the perceived decay, and the sacred texts began to be rewritten. These new men, unburdened by the psychic lore of Joe Namath's creaky knees or Joe Montana's jigsaw-puzzle spine or Y.A. Tittle's bleeding forehead, took the obvious skills of the spread quarterbacks and set them loose against NFL defenses.

    And now what is this we have before us -- fun? Yes, a league that can't define a catch without seven pages of footnotes is being overrun by this most endangered concept. Fun destroys the myth that everything must be difficult and exhausting and earned. Fun puts the game's inherent martiality at risk. Turns out you can make your way down the field faster, more efficiently and far more often by standing back there and finding the receiver most open.

    It's starting to feel like a revolution, and every revolution needs a frontman. Rams quarterback Jared Goff, under the progressive vision of head coach Sean McVay, is the leader of one of the NFL's most dynamic offenses. Just two years after 2016's top pick suffered through the turgid, sclerotic final days of the crumbling Jeff Fisher empire -- losing all seven of his rookie starts -- Goff is an ascendant star, an MVP candidate, a player who symbolizes the promise of the new over the stubbornness of the old.

    "It's funny that the spread quarterback was seen as such a scary thing going into every draft," Goff says. "I played in the spread, Patrick Mahomes played in the spread, Deshaun Watson, Mitchell Trubisky -- the NFL is so stuck in its ways sometimes. If you don't innovate and adapt, you're going to be left...
    -11-15-2018, 12:25 AM
  • MauiRam
    Why there's hope for Jared Goff in 2017
    by MauiRam
    By Sage Rosenfels

    Sage Rosenfels is a former 12-year NFL quarterback who writes, does radio, and podcasts about the NFL and college football.

    We are less than two weeks removed from one of the most exciting NFL drafts in recent memory. All 32 teams feel they have upgraded their roster with exciting young talent who will make an immediate impact, as well as others who will develop into important pieces in the future.

    The draft is one of the NFL’s best hype machines, as it gives hope to each team - even the Browns - that their future is bright. After the lights are dimmed and the draft stage is deconstructed, it’s time for the players and coaches to get to work.

    Some of the players drafted will be immediate NFL stars, while others will soon be out of the league, even first-rounders. Of all the positions, quarterbacks have been the trickiest players to scout. Quarterbacks taken in the first round are a huge gamble - some have immediate success while others never come close to being worth their high-pick status.

    On occasion, great quarterbacks are afterthoughts who become NFL stars (like Tom Brady and Kurt Warner). Drafting a quarterback high is a huge risk that can change an organization, for better or worse, for years to come.

    Jared Goff is one year removed from being the first overall selection in the 2016 NFL Draft. Before and after the selection, he was complimented by nearly every analyst as a future NFL star who would lead the Los Angeles Rams for the next decade.

    A lot has changed in the last year for Goff. The organization fired Jeff Fisher and replaced him with the youngest head coach in NFL history, Sean McVay. Goff’s rookie year was memorable for all of the wrong reasons, as poor play from both him and his team as a whole resulted in the coaching overhaul.

    This is what happens every year in the NFL. Young men who are only a few months removed from playing college football are expected to make huge impacts on struggling franchises, many of which haven’t won consistently for decades. Every year, many of these players don’t live up to the hype, as the honeymoon period of the draft quickly disappears.

    Goff knows this all too well. Every rookie has hopes that they will come into the league and shine immediately. Some, like Dak Prescott, excel right out of the gate by landing in a perfect situation. Others, like Goff, end up on teams that even Brady wouldn’t be able to fix.

    This is why McVay was hired. He and fellow first-year coach Kyle Shanahan are two young minds who view offensive football differently. McVay and Shanahan worked together in Washington and both are responsible for developing Kirk Cousins, who went from a fourth-round draft pick to a $25-million franchise player in just a few seasons.

    Both McVay and Shanahan view offensive football from one angle, the quarterback.
    -05-11-2017, 12:59 AM