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Los Angeles Rams: Back End Supremacy

The Ringer explores which secondary unit will reign supreme in the Legion Of Boom’s absence.

NFL: Los Angeles Rams Press Conference
Cornerbacks Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib look to bolster the Rams secondary in 2018
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Kam Chancellor won’t be back, The Shermantator is in Santa Clara, and Earl Thomas’ future in Seattle is in limbo; the time has come to apply a toe tag to the once dominate Legion Of Boom. While best wishes go out to Chancellor who suffered a neck injury last November, the Boom will not be missed by NFC West fans, or Rams fans in particular.

The Ringer’s Danny Kelly recently explored which current NFL secondaries are the most worthy of being recognized as the league’s premier unit; a question Rams fans have been, albeit speculatively, enthusiastically addressing since the acquisitions of star cornerbacks Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib.

With a flurry of offseason moves, the Rams—who finished third last year in defensive pass DVOA—have assembled what could be, at least in the short term, the secondary with the highest upside in the NFL. At safety, the team returns three key starters: Lamarcus Joyner, who broke out after moving from corner to free safety in Wade Phillips’s scheme last year; John Johnson, the team’s promising second-year pro; and Nickell Robey-Coleman, L.A.’s reliable slot corner.

But on the outside, new additions bring the potential for a major jump forward. Cornerback Marcus Peters, acquired in a trade with the Chiefs, brings to L.A. a unique nose for the football, with 19 interceptions, 55 passes defensed, and five forced fumbles on his résumé after just three pro seasons. Aqib Talib, a five-time Pro Bowler acquired in a separate deal with the Broncos, slides in on the opposite wing.

The Rams will have to turn their new mix of playmakers into a cohesive unit, but at least on paper, their defensive backfield looks ready to reign supreme.

Among the candidates that Kelly explores are the “favorites” that include the Los Angeles Rams, Jacksonville Jaguars, Minnesota Vikings, the Los Andiego Chargers, and surprisingly the Baltimore Ravens. Also considered are the Bears, Broncos, Saints, Bills, Bengals, Falcons, and Broncos.

Kelly considers several measures in his evaluations, including the all mighty pass rush that each team will bring, which can make any secondary shine far brighter.

While the Rams hope their new secondary will be even better than last season’s 5th rated unit, more success will inevitably devolve into another heated debate about nicknames by fans. For now “Lock Angeles” seems to be in the lead.


Who will have the NFL’s top secondary in 2019?

This poll is closed

  • 13%
    Jacksonville Jaguars
    (41 votes)
  • 2%
    Minnesota Vikings
    (8 votes)
  • 80%
    Los Angeles Rams
    (245 votes)
  • 1%
    Los Angeles Chargers
    (5 votes)
  • 0%
    Chicago Bears
    (0 votes)
  • 0%
    Denver Broncos
    (1 vote)
  • 0%
    New Orleans Saints
    (2 votes)
  • 0%
    Buffalo Bills
    (1 vote)
  • 0%
    Cincinnati Bengals
    (1 vote)
  • 0%
    Atlanta Falcons
    (1 vote)
  • 0%
    Denver Broncos
    (0 votes)
305 votes total Vote Now