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LA Rams-Oakland Raiders Playing Time Breakdown: What The Snap Counts Say About The Offensive Breakout

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Here’s how the playing time got doled out in Week 2.

Los Angeles Rams at Oakland Raiders
Los Angeles Rams at Oakland Raiders
Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Note: I’ll update the snap counts in this spreadsheet all season including the first tab tracking the season totals. While I’ll paste individual game PT in each week’s recap, I’ll likely refer to the season totals moving forward from that link. So uh, peep it.

One key before we get started is to look at who didn’t get any work for the Los Angeles Rams in their second preseason game against the Oakland Raiders:

  • WR Tavon Austin
  • LB Mark Barron
  • WR K.D. Cannon
  • OT Andrew Donnal
  • OLB Samson Ebukam
  • LB Nic Grigsby
  • CB Mike Jordan
  • TE Johnny Mundt
  • QB Dan Orlovksy
  • OLB Ejuan Price
  • OLB Robert Quinn
  • CB Nickell Robey-Coleman
  • CB Kayvon Webster

So with that much roster attrition, obviously the playing time was going to be skewed especially at cornerback and outside linebacker.

Offense

PS Week 2 @ Raiders - Offense

Player POS Off Off%
Player POS Off Off%
Darrell Williams OT 53 72.60%
Austin Blythe C 52 71.23%
Sean Mannion QB 38 52.05%
Pace Murphy OT 37 50.68%
Jake Eldrenkamp G 37 50.68%
Jamon Brown G 37 50.68%
Rob Havenstein T 35 47.95%
Josh Reynolds WR 35 47.95%
Jared Goff QB 35 47.95%
Robert Woods WR 35 47.95%
Pharoh Cooper WR 34 46.58%
Sammy Watkins WR 34 46.58%
Cody Wichmann G 32 43.84%
Malcolm Brown RB 27 36.99%
Gerald Everett TE 27 36.99%
Justin Davis RB 26 35.62%
Cooper Kupp WR 26 35.62%
Mike Thomas WR 25 34.25%
Temarrick Hemingway TE 22 30.14%
Rodger Saffold OT 20 27.40%
Andrew Whitworth OT 20 27.40%
Michael Dunn OT 20 27.40%
John Sullivan C 20 27.40%
Todd Gurley RB 20 27.40%
Cory Harkey TE 19 26.03%
Tyler Higbee TE 19 26.03%
Travis Wilson TE 7 9.59%
Sam Rogers RB 6 8.22%
Lenard Tillery RB 1 1.37%
Aaron Green RB 1 1.37%
Shakeir Ryan WR 1 1.37%
Nelson Spruce WR 1 1.37%
Alex Kozan G 1 1.37%
Parker Collins C 1 1.37%

With the Andrew Whitworth-Rodger Saffold-John Sullivan trio still limited in action, the offensive line snap rotation leads the way with six of the seven most active players. If you look at the combined totals over the first two games, it grows to seven of the top eight adding G Cody Wichmann. Suffice to say, the effort to identify which OL make the 53-man roster could easily be seen as the top personnel priority right now. One random OL note? Pretty clear some of OT Pace Murphy’s Week 1 snaps went to OT Michael Dunn. Keep an eye on this next week.

At wide receiver, you had six wide receivers rotate heavily: Josh Reynolds and Sammy Watkins in their first action as Rams along with Robert Woods, Pharoh Cooper, Cooper Kupp and Mike Thomas. It begs the question...is this the Rams’ WR depth chart for the 53-man? We know Austin was out, but given how the offense performed in his absence, it’s not unfair to consider how unnecessary he now seems. And does the Nelson Spruce train still have anyone on board? Consider this: Watkins, Thomas and Reynolds showed up and pushed Spruce and WR Paul McRoberts out of the picture. Not to draw too heavily from the first two preseason games, but you could make a case that the final two preseason games are less about validating that six-man rotation and more about validating a case against it.

Fair to say the running back spot is a three-man rotation between Just Todd Gurley, Malcolm Brown and Justin Davis?

At tight end and fullback, the Cory Harkey Experiment is going to be an interesting one to watch over the final two preseason games. One factor making it so? Rookie Sam Rogers doesn’t seem to have any real role on the offense. He’s been heavily involved on special teams (see below), but has gotten less work on offense than RB De’Mard Llorens and WR Brandon Shippen...

Defense

PS Week 2 @ Raiders - Defense

Player POS Def Def%
Player POS Def Def%
Troy Hill CB 56 94.92%
Marqui Christian SS 41 69.49%
Isaiah Johnson FS 34 57.63%
Carlos Thompson LB 32 54.24%
John Johnson DB 28 47.46%
Dominique Hatfield CB 26 44.07%
Corey Littleton LB 24 40.68%
Kevin Peterson CB 24 40.68%
Tanzel Smart DT 24 40.68%
Mike Purcell NT 24 40.68%
Cody Davis FS 23 38.98%
Morgan Fox DE 23 38.98%
Blake Countess CB 22 37.29%
Bryce Hager LB 20 33.90%
Louis Trinca-Pasat DT 20 33.90%
Cassanova McKinzy LB 18 30.51%
Kevin Davis LB 18 30.51%
Casey Sayles DT 18 30.51%
Davis Tull LB 18 30.51%
Josh Forrest LB 17 28.81%
Maurice Alexander FS 17 28.81%
Connor Barwin LB 17 28.81%
Alec Ogletree LB 17 28.81%
Matt Longacre DE 16 27.12%
Omarius Bryant DT 16 27.12%
Michael Brockers DT 14 23.73%
Andy Mulumba LB 11 18.64%
Ethan Westbrooks DT 10 16.95%
Trumaine Johnson CB 9 15.25%
Folarin Orimolade LB 6 10.17%
Lamarcus Joyner CB 4 6.78%
A.J. Jefferson DT 2 3.39%

Was this CB Troy Hill’s make or break audition? With CB Kayvon Webster and preseason week 1 hero CB Mike Jordan sidelined along with CB Trumaine Johnson hardly needed in a preseason game (he logged just nine snaps, less than 16% of the defensive work), Hill was in line for a big game. The result? Yikes. It’s worth considering that while fans are fairly not impressed with Hill’s play in the first two games, he was the go-to as the first pick from the depth. That, if nothing else, speaks to the coaching staff’s preference which matters more than anything re: the 53-man roster. I doubt we see Hill log a 90%+ rate next week, but the roster battle here should be at the fore of the defensive storylines.

No Quinn. No Ebukam. No Price. Limited work from fellow starter Connor Barwin. And with OLB Carlos Thompson out for a few weeks with an injury, the position certainly opens up a bit for opportunity right now. The question is whether that opportunity has anything to do with the Week 1 roster if Quinn, Ebukam and Price are all ready to go.

And keep an eye on the work rates for S Marqui Christian, DT Tanzel Smart and S Isaiah Johnson. The amount of work they’ve gotten in the first two games (all > 40% in both games, Christian > 50%) suggest there could be something there come September.

Special Teams

PS Week 2 @ Raiders - Special Teams

Player POS ST ST%
Player POS ST ST%
Marqui Christian SS 13 48.15%
Dominique Hatfield CB 12 44.44%
Temarrick Hemingway TE 10 37.04%
Cory Harkey TE 10 37.04%
Sam Rogers RB 10 37.04%
John Johnson DB 10 37.04%
Cassanova McKinzy LB 10 37.04%
Corey Littleton LB 9 33.33%
Kevin Davis LB 9 33.33%
Jake McQuaide LS 9 33.33%
Aarion Penton CB 8 29.63%
Carlos Thompson LB 7 25.93%
Cody Davis FS 7 25.93%
Josh Forrest LB 7 25.93%
Andy Mulumba LB 7 25.93%
Folarin Orimolade LB 7 25.93%
Greg Zuerlein K 7 25.93%
Isaiah Johnson FS 6 22.22%
Blake Countess CB 6 22.22%
Bryce Hager LB 6 22.22%
Johnny Hekker P 6 22.22%
Travis Coons K 6 22.22%
De'Mard Llorens RB 6 22.22%
Mike Thomas WR 5 18.52%
Lenard Tillery RB 5 18.52%
Aaron Green RB 5 18.52%
Troy Hill CB 5 18.52%
Kevin Peterson CB 5 18.52%
Paul McRoberts WR 5 18.52%
Pace Murphy OT 4 14.81%
Justin Davis RB 4 14.81%
Austin Blythe C 3 11.11%
Jake Eldrenkamp G 3 11.11%
Jamon Brown G 3 11.11%
Rob Havenstein T 3 11.11%
Malcolm Brown RB 3 11.11%
Rodger Saffold OT 3 11.11%
Shakeir Ryan WR 3 11.11%
Nelson Spruce WR 3 11.11%
Casey Sayles DT 3 11.11%
Maurice Alexander FS 3 11.11%
Matt Longacre DE 3 11.11%
Brandon Shippen WR 3 11.11%
Darrell Williams OT 2 7.41%
Josh Reynolds WR 2 7.41%
Pharoh Cooper WR 2 7.41%
Andrew Whitworth OT 2 7.41%
Travis Wilson TE 2 7.41%
Tanzel Smart DT 2 7.41%
Mike Purcell NT 2 7.41%
Morgan Fox DE 2 7.41%
Louis Trinca-Pasat DT 2 7.41%
Connor Barwin LB 2 7.41%
Alec Ogletree LB 2 7.41%
Ethan Westbrooks DT 2 7.41%
Carlos Davis CB 2 7.41%
Gerald Everett TE 1 3.70%
Michael Dunn OT 1 3.70%
Tyler Higbee TE 1 3.70%
Alex Kozan G 1 3.70%
Parker Collins C 1 3.70%
Davis Tull LB 1 3.70%
Michael Brockers DT 1 3.70%
Trumaine Johnson CB 1 3.70%
A.J. Jefferson DT 1 3.70%

Not sure where to draw the line for those who are legitimately in the mix for the 53-man based solely on teams.

Is it the top five after two games who have a combined ST rate > 40%? That would include Rogers (the most active special teams contributor which all but suggests he’s locked in for the 53-man), LB Andy Mulumba, Harkey, Christian and CB Dominique Hatfield.

Does it stretch to the 30% line to add four other contributors in LB Folarin Orimolade, TE Temarrick Hemingway, S John Johnson and the injured Thompson?

Or does it go all the way to the 25% mark? That would put RB Lenard Tillery, LB Kevin Davis, LB Josh Forrest, LB Cassanova McKinzy and CB Kevin Peterson in contention.

I’m not sure, but we know that a handful or so of these candidates are going to make the roster solely for this area. I’m going to be very interested in the snap counts that come out after next weekend to see how this is shaping up.

And one factor to remember, there are no intermediate cuts this year. Unlike previous years in which NFL teams would trim the roster from 90 to 75 after the third preseason game and then 75 to 53 after the final preseason contest, this year avoids that initial round of cuts and goes directly from the 90-man to the 53-man by 4pm ET/1pm PT on September 4. So rotation over these next two games will likely reflect an internal strategy for all 32 teams on how to adjust to the rule change. Will those players who are essentially 75-90 just see their playing time erased? Will they instead get more time than they would have a year ago?

We’ll see how things shake out in Week 3.


As always, drop your observations on the playing time from this week as well as anything you’re seeing moving forward from the preseason snaps trends as they develop.