This week’s blowout loss to the Buffalo Bills came with more than just embarrassment for the Los Angeles Rams, as a handful of players also suffered injuries during the contest that will sideline them for some time.
One of those injuries occurred to rookie running back out of Notre Dame Kyren Williams, as the first-year player suffered a high ankle sprain that will keep him out of action for anywhere between 6-to-8 weeks. Williams was listed as the team’s third back on the depth chart, and Sean McVay stated that he was looking to get Williams involved in Thursday’s game prior to his injury. Considering this, McVay clearly would prefer to have three separate running backs at his disposal during the season, meaning the Rams would need to go add one to fill this void.
Jake Funk lost his spot as third running back in training camp despite the fact that Williams missed significant time during camp, so it is reasonable to believe that Funk is not looked at as a dependable third option for the Rams. Here are three running backs that could fill that third spot for Los Angeles:
1) Malcolm Brown
The fact that Malcolm Brown is still on the open market is absolutely baffling, as the bruising running back has shown that he is a very capable short yardage back that is also serviceable on the receiving end. Now, Brown did suffer a season-ending quad injury last season in Miami and was released prior to the preseason with New Orleans in August, so health could potentially be a concern for the 29 year old. However, Brown would not be asked to do a whole lot with the Rams, and his last two seasons with the team were career seasons under McVay. Reuniting with Brown is favorable for both sides, as the Rams lack a bruiser at the running back position that can be a touchdown/first down machine close to the goal line or the sticks.
2) Devontae Booker
Last season, Devontae Booker was the main back for the New York Giants following an injury to starter Saquon Barkley, and he actually played very well. Booker racked up 593 yards on 145 carries and, more impressively, 40 receptions for 268 yards. Booker’s dual threat skill set is very similar to that of Kyren Williams, making the fit nearly perfect for the 30 year old running back. Booker has amassed a total of 3,343 yards from scrimmage over his career, making him the most productive of the 3 backs L.A should consider. The Rams need dependable insurance for their main backs in Henderson and Akers, which Devontae Booker can easily provide for Los Angeles.
3) Marlon Mack
Of the three running backs the Rams should consider bringing on, Marlon Mack is the youngest at just 26 years old. Not only that, but Mack is also the only among the three with a 1,000 yard rushing season under his belt, proving he can be a very impactful player in the NFL. However, Mack did suffer a season ending achilles tear in 2020 following his 1,000 yard rushing season in 2019, forcing Jonathon Taylor to become the Colts starting back (and we know how that has turned out). Due to the emergence of Jonathon Taylor, Mack was squeezed out of significant playing time in Indianapolis in 2021, which led to signing with Houston in the off-season. The Texans decided to release Marlon Mack in the pre-season, and the young man is still looking for a home. If Mack can get back to his 2019 form, the Rams could get an absolute steal, giving them a rare 3-headed monster at the running back spot.