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Last Minute Thoughts: Matthew Stafford returns but is without Cooper Kupp

Can Allen Robinson step up at receiver? Saints also dealing with injuries.

Rams vs 49ers at SoFi Stadium Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

For most of the Los Angeles Rams’ 2022 season it’s been one step forward and two steps back, especially on the injury front.

It seemed the Rams were setup to return some key reinforcements this week. Matthew Stafford cleared concussion protocol and is ready to take the field. LA was expecting to get Alaric Jackson back at left tackle after missing the Arizona Cardinals game with a knee injury. David Edwards also seemed ready to return from his concussion.

The Rams were about to have five guys on the offensive line that they felt good about for the first time since they took the opening snap of the season.

LT - Alaric Jackson

LG - David Edwards or Coleman Shelton

C - Brian Allen

RG - Coleman Shelton or Chandler Brewer

RT - Rob Havenstein

But it was discovered that Jackson has a blood clot issue and will miss the remainder of the season - LA expects to turn to Ty Nsekhe at left tackle instead. Edwards had a setback in his recovery, so he is out for an indefinite amount of time. Chandler Brewer injured his knee last week vs. the Cardinals and is now in injured reserve. And Brian Allen is nursing two injuries - one to his knee and one to his thumb - and they will keep him out of this game.

Instead of aforementioned group, the Rams will instead trot out:

LT - Ty Nsekhe (37-year old NFL journeyman)

LG - Bobby Evans or Matt Skura

C - Coleman Shelton

RG - Oday Aboushi or Matt Skura

RT - Rob Havenstein

It’s a drastic juxtaposition for Los Angeles.

While it’s encouraging to see Stafford return, he will be without wide receiver Cooper Kupp and playing behind this patchwork offensive line. Can the Rams get something going on the ground in order to help protect their franchise quarterback?

JB Scott is back on Turf Show Times: The Podcast and he gives his Last Minute Thoughts 24-hours ahead of game time. There’s plenty to talk about with the matchup against the New Orleans Saints, though this isn’t a high stakes contest:

  • John Wolford isn’t NFL-caliber, but Rams also failed to support him adequately
  • Cooper Kupp is out for next month. Who steps up at receiver?
  • Just when it seemed the OL was getting healthy, they continue to have guys go down.
  • Matthew Stafford returns
  • Saints are without Davenport, Jordan, Lattimore, and Werner on defense
  • Chris Olave has been productive as a rookie with 650 yards in 9 games
  • Rest of season is opportunity for Rams to decide who should be part of team in 2023
  • 5 steps to help Matthew Stafford return to form
  • With lost season underway, which young players should LA turn to?
  • Sean McVay is down now, but it won’t stay that way for long