The New Orleans Saints beat the Los Angeles Rams last Sunday, 27-20, but is it possible that Rams fans feel relieved after falling to 3-7? Knowing that the Rams were all but out of the playoff race following Week 10’s loss to the Arizona Cardinals, perhaps it’s a sigh of gratitude by fans that the team will have to accept what they are right now.
A bad football team.
But at least the Rams are a bad football with a recent past of being great.
In our weekly poll of Rams fan confidence in the direction of the team, L.A.’s base checked in at a 2022 low of 15% prior to the Saints game. That means that 85% of Rams fans do not have confidence in the direction of a team that is less than a year removed from winning the Super Bowl. However, in Week 12 that number went UP, not down.
Now 25% of Rams fans are confident that the team is headed in the right direction. Is it an acceptance of being bad and the hope for a higher draft pick in the second round that is causing the spike for L.A.? Or have fans merely hit the wall and can’t help but do anything other than laugh at this point?
One potential reason for optimism who was in attendance during L.A.’s loss to the Saints is Arch Manning. The 17-year-old nephew of Peyton and Eli Manning is set to graduate in the spring and attend the University of Texas next fall, where he is probable to backup redshirt sophomore Quinn Ewers, potentially a top-three pick in 2024. Then it could be 2026 that Arch Manning becomes the third member of his family to be drafted first overall.
Newman QB and future Texas Longhorn Arch Manning is taking in today’s Rams-Saints pregame with some of his friends and teammates. pic.twitter.com/1iDgrykFAj— Jeff Duncan (@JeffDuncan_) November 20, 2022
That is a long ways away for the Rams or any other team, but at least Manning’s presence served as a reminder that there is always hope in the cookie jar called “Next year.”
The Rams do not have a first round pick in 2023, but if Les Snead pulls the foot off the gas for trades (assuming his job isn’t in jeopardy anyway) then maybe L.A. will be back in the QB drafting business again by 2024, 2025, or 2026. Matthew Stafford is set to miss Sunday’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs and despite a new four-year contract, the Rams will need to find reinforcements and reasons for optimism at the quarterback position in case he misses more games in the future.
Based on this week’s poll, it appears as though reasons for optimism is something Rams fans are more than ready for now.