Both offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell and defensive coordinator Raheem Morris spoke with the media Thursday after practice, as the Los Angeles Rams prepare to take on the Houston Texans. Here’s what they said about Cooper Kupp, Matthew Stafford, and Ernest Jones.
O’Connell on Kupp’s preparation
“He plays at such a high level. With his ability to separate and all the things that he does, but what people don’t see is his preparation. He’s watching tape with the quarterbacks. He’s trying to understand through the lens of the quarterback so when he’s running these routes, man zone whatever it is; he can be on the same page with Matthew so they can play fast.”
Kupp is having a career year, with 56 catches for 809 yards and nine touchdowns through only seven games. Thank goodness the Rams extended him prior to this statistical outburst.
O’Connell on what makes Stafford special
“He’s got this make it right factor.”
That’s a perfect way to sum up what Stafford has meant to this offense. O’Connell went on to add that the offense is looking to convert on third and long situations, not punt and play the field position game. This is a mentality that was nonexistent last season.
Morris on Young getting traded
“We’re going to miss Kenny. And not just Kenny the football player, Kenny the guy. It would be dehumanized to tell you guys that you don’t feel it from a coaching staff or you don’t feel it from a player when you lose a guy like that because of a financial constraint or whatever the case may be…We’ve invested in Ernest Jones, we invested in Troy (Reeder). Those two players mainly will come on to step on and fill some of those shoes and fill those rolls.”
I for one wish L.A. had kept Young. We got nothing in return for him. The Rams might as well just let him walk in free agency. With that being said, there may be something brewing behind the scenes, when you combine this trade with Rob Havenstein’s recent contract restructure.
Jones has impressed Morris
“I’ve been really impressed with his constant development. Going out there every single week and treating each week like he was the starter, whether he was or not.”
There were reports early out of training camp of Jones getting practice reps with the starters. Luckily, Jones has a ton of talent around him in that starting unit, and will just need to do his job.
Will Jones start against the Texans?
“It depends on what package we try to open the game with… Is he a starter in my head? Yes. But I don’t know if he’s going to be the opening play starter. Just depends on the personnel group we go with.”
Whether Brown technically starts or not is almost irrelevant. From this point forward, the 103rd overall pick of the 2021 NFL Draft will be getting plenty of playing time. Hopefully, he is ready for this moment and thrives with this opportunity.