Now that the preseason has come to an end, the regular season is only a couple weeks away, meaning more and more predictions and projections will be pumped out of the media in anticipation for another NFL season. With that being said, here are 3 BOLD predictions for the Rams Super Bowl defending season:
ALLEN ROBINSON WILL SCORE 12+ TDs
Now, this one may surprise some folks due to the simple fact that he is not the number 1 receiving option on the team. However, that will actually aid Robinson in his effectiveness, as he has been the main option in every season he has played in the NFL, with this season being far from the case.
With defenses primed to be ultra-focused on the reigning OPOY Cooper Kupp, that will open the door for Robinson to have favorable match-ups often. Couple that with the fact that his quarterback, Matthew Stafford, loves to give his targets opportunities to win jump balls, which so happens to be Robinson’s strong-point as a receiver. Expect Robinson to be one of, if not the, main targets in the redzone this season, resulting in at least the 2nd most TDs for Robinson in a single season.
Many forget just how solid of a receiver Robinson has been over the span of his career, doing so with a series of average to below average quarterbacks throwing him the ball. There is no question Stafford will be the best quarterback Robinson has ever graced the field with, which will bode extremely well for Allen Robinson, as well as the Rams offense as a whole.
THE RAMS WILL GO 6-0 IN DIVISIONAL PLAY
Yes you read that correctly, the Rams will replicate the 2018 season and go undefeated in the NFC West this season. The main reason is due to the simple fact that at the conclusion of week 12, the Rams will have already played both the Arizona Cardinals and the San Francisco 49ers twice each. Meaning, the two other high level teams in the division will be out of the way early, and considering the rookie QB in SF and the suspension of DeAndre Hopkins in AZ, playing these teams early increases the chances of winning these match-ups.
The team expected to be at the bottom of the division is the Seattle Seahawks, which should be 2 easy wins for this stacked Rams team, as the Seahawks traded away star quarterback Russell Wilson this off-season, leaving Seattle with a quarterback competition consisting of Drew Lock and Geno Smith.
Many may consider this notion that the Rams could go undefeated in the NFC West as ridiculous, as they have not beaten the 49ers in 6 straight regular season games. However, Trey Lance is a massive question mark and, due to his inexperience, there will be growing pains early and often for the young quarterback. The Rams are clearly the best overall team in the West, and they will prove it by asserting dominance over the entire division.
THE RAMS WILL BE FIRST BACK-TO-BACK SUPER BOWL CHAMPIONS SINCE 2005
Repeating as Super Bowl champion is extremely rare in the NFL, as the last team to do so was the New England Patriots nearly 20 years ago back in 2004 and 2005. Doing so would put the Rams in rare air, solidifying themselves as one of few teams to go back-to-back in the history of the league.
One of the toughest hurdles for defending champions to overcome is the possibility of losing key contributors to the past title, something the Rams will actually experience this season. The team’s left tackle since 2017, Andrew Whitworth, announced his retirement this off-season, leaving a massive gap in terms of established leadership on the offensive line. However, talent wise, there is a legitimate argument to be made that Joe Noteboom, the team’s left tackle entering this season, was just as effective in terms of production when he had to step in for ‘Big Whit’. The question for Noteboom will be health, as he has yet to prove he can play through a 17 game season in such a demanding role.
The Rams also lost receiver Robert Woods, a jack of all trades player that was instrumental in the team’s turnaround beginning in 2017. Although Woods’ season ended early last year, having that presence in the locker room proved to be impactful nonetheless. But, the team has addressed that loss as well by bringing in Allen Robinson, former Jacksonville Jaguars and Chicago Bears receiver, as the number 2 option for Matthew Stafford. Robinson will bring an entirely new dimension to the offense, giving McVay the first legitimate 50/50, jump ball threat receiver since his tenure began in 2020.
Finally, the team lost Von Miller to Buffalo this off-season, the mid-season acquisition that was a game changing player, whom elevated the pass-rush instantly, and created a front four built for a Super Bowl run. While the loss of Miller was not addressed directly, the Rams grabbed another Hall of Fame player at a different position. Former Seattle Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner inked a 5-year deal with the Rams, providing an unquestioned talent in the middle of a defense that already possesses perennial All-Pros Aaron Donald and Jalen Ramsey.
Even though the team lost some crucial pieces to last year's championship puzzle, they have acquired replacements that have the potential to be even bigger pieces than those lost. This 2022-2023 Rams roster has the make-up of a potentially all-time great team, with perhaps the best coach in the NFL in Sean McVay running the show.
Last season was the first year with quarterback Matthew Stafford, which turned into the Rams’ second Super Bowl title in the team’s history. The thought that he will be even more comfortable in the offensive scheme is a scary thought for the NFL, considering it took just 1 year with the team to become the best team in the world. The 2022-2023 season will be one to remember, ending with the Los Angeles Rams hoisting the Lombardi trophy once again as back-to-back Super Bowl champions.