by Nick Hamilton (@NickHamiltonLA)
photo credit: OC Register
LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Rams are 2-0 in the preseason, however the confidence and energy level are higher than we’ve seen in a while under head coach Sean McVay.
Despite meeting Raiders Khalil Mack close up in Oakland during the a preseason game last Saturday, quarterback Jared Goff remained poised and continued several drives that lead to a 23 yard touchdown pass to Cooper Kupp. Goff lead another drive that was capped off by Todd Gurley’s 2-yard touchdown run.
Goff finished 16-for-20 for 160 yards on the night and looked more impressive than the week before. The confidence is building is Goff as he continues to learn more of the offense daily, thanks to the coaching and teaching of McVay. Many have criticized Goff and with right, the quarterback has shown strides of progress under McVay that could later on pay dividends.
The Rams traded multiple draft picks and moved up into the number one slot just a year ago to draft the California Golden Bear quarterback. Often times young quarterbacks or players in general, look to shake the “bust” label placed on them by so-called experts. Goff coming to Los Angeles was no exception, and although GM Les Snead and former head coach Jeff Fisher tried their best to sell Goff to the media and fans, some were still not convinced of Goff’s potential to succeed in the league.
After a much needed head coaching change, some still doubt McVay due to his age and inexperience as a head coach. Yet he’s the one that convinced us all that Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins is the real deal and worth over $20 million per season. McVay has the power to do the same with Goff if given the right time and the tools in place. The moment McVay came to L.A., he instilled a philosophy that everyone would help out on offense no matter the position. Players would block for each other, protect each other. It sound masterful in theory, but would McVay have the personnel necessary to complete this task?
Goff and Gurley were good starts, and later trading for wide receivers Robert Woods and Sammy Watkins left little room for error for not only the organization, but Goff himself. A budding offensive line (which they need to continue to improve), the sky is truly the limit for this team. An experience back up quarterback in Sean Mannion, who at times has looked better in practices than Goff, however Goff is the guy the Rams could build a franchise around.
The Rams could make significant strides in the years to come to be that playoff bound team, however in the words of Smokey from the movie Friday, you have to crawl before walk.
EXTRA POINT: The Rams now prepare for a crosstown preseason battle against the Los Angeles Chargers on Saturday night at the Coliseum. The last time these two teams were around each other it looked like a 30-man battle at the Royal Rumble. We’ll see how fierce these two squads compete.