The idea of any of our Los Angeles Rams being overrated is a polarizing idea that isn’t lost on me. I don’t want to get fans angry for the purpose of getting angry, so let me state from the start that I am not a hater of any of our players on the roster.
I just don’t believe as of right now, in the heat of July, that Samson Ebukam should be a starter on a Super Bowl-caliber team like the Rams.
I feel like the LA Rams can do better at the edge. Some some folks at TST believe that Ebukam is the best pass rusher on the Rams (looking at you, 3k...). I think Dante Fowler, Jr. is an excellent tackler and has an elite awareness that is superior to Ebukam and Clay Matthews has the experience and technique to get the job done over him as well.
But that’s just me. I also had a big plate of Bagel Bites for dinner last night, so I probably can’t be trusted.
This group was always going to head into 2019 with low expectations.
With the addition of LB Clay Matthews likely playing both outside and inside linebacker, the two guys slotted to start on the inside will be ILB Micah Kiser and ILB Cory Littleton while the projected outside rushers are going to be Fowler, Jr. and Ebukam. Matthews could be rotating with most if not all of these guys — it’s still up in the air. Regardless of how the rotation shakes out, Ebukam is in the mix.
For this defense to really flourish, someone on the 90-man roster has to compete with Ebukam in camp. A competition is what this group needs. Maybe the second year LB out of Oklahoma, Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, could make some waves in the preseason. Could DL John Franklin-Myers find success as a pass rusher? Heading into camp, they are outsiders compared to Samson Ebukam.
Ebukam’s Madden ranking (which is law) is pretty good! However, young Dylan of Utah shares my thoughts:
I just gotta wonder how Ebukam is an 80 https://t.co/JakdqQpcA2— Dylan Cardwell (@TheRamsReportIG) July 15, 2019
It’s probably ridiculous to claim that a fourth-round EDGE rusher is overrated, but there’s a method to my madness, Ramily. While Ebukam turned in a sparkling two-touchdown performance on Monday Night Football in that historic game against the Kansas City Chiefs in what might be the game of his life, Ebukam was pretty pedestrian for the rest of the season.
Yet the good buzz keeps blowing in his direction:
Edge Defender Samson Ebukam had the highest Pass Rush grade for #Rams not named Aaron Donald in 2018— PFF LA Rams (@PFF_Rams) April 10, 2019
He looks to step into his 3rd year by improving on his impressive Run Stop & Pass Rushing abilities to find time in a rotation that now includes Clay Matthews & Dante Fowler Jr. pic.twitter.com/RdFsBQOZGT
The run defense for the Rams is probably the team’s biggest weakness right now, and Ebukam isn’t helping.
While being a Day 3 draft talent makes him seem like a steal, we’re talking about a guy who is going to get a lot of starting snaps. When I watch tape on Ebukam, his ability to break through the line of scrimmage to get to the QB leaves a lot to be desired. As a pass rusher, his three sacks don’t do a fantastic job in the bragging department. I would argue that his out-of-this-world performance on Monday Night Football in front of the country provided an unfair expectation of what he could accomplish for the rest of the season.
I think Ebukam is a fine depth guy on the roster. He brings some size that can be useful, but his motor so far has proven that he can disappear in games.
There’s a good chance that Samson Ebukam can improve this season, but as of now, he’s my pick as the most overrated player on the team.