About a month and a half ago, ESPN’s initial 2017 power rankings slotted the Los Angeles Rams in at 28th. Coming off of a 4-12 season with tons of roster issues and asking a first-time head coach who happens to be the youngest head coach in NFL history, the Rams were never going to be the recipient of much praise.
Now through the first wave of free agency, ESPN has a new set of power rankings that juggles some teams who have addressed major needs with impact signings and those teams who have lost major talents to the market.
So where do the Rams land? Where they took off.
28. Los Angeles Rams
2016 record: 4-12
Post-Super Bowl ranking: No. 28
The addition of veteran tackle Andrew Whitworth should help provide some stability to the Rams' offensive line. The Rams averaged fewer yards before initial contact than any team in the NFL last season.
Free agency was never going to be the savior for this roster. The Jeff Fisher era, buttressed by the RGIII trade, left things in worse shape roster-wise than how he found it. This team is going to require drafted talent and legit coaching and development to turn things around.
Power rankings aren’t a barrier to success for the Rams. They are a fair indication of the level of challenges they will have to face moving forward. Consider that the Rams are (again) behind the 3-win Jacksonville Jaguars as well as their market colleagues in the Los Angeles Chargers.
There’s a lot of looking up to do right now. Hopefully, a solid class from the 2017 NFL Draft and the anticipated oversight from new Head Coach Sean McVay will see the Rams in loftier status in power rankings moving forward.