After much speculation, the Los Angeles Rams officially have their schedule for the 2023 campaign:
To whom it may concern, we will not be available on any of the following dates in 2023.— Los Angeles Rams (@RamsNFL) May 12, 2023
» https://t.co/NhUYDzETU8 | #RamsHouse pic.twitter.com/JRLSHBmprr
Despite coming off a disappointing 5-12 failed repeat campaign, this upcoming season is expected to be yet another exciting year for the Rams. There won’t be any additional pressure like entering the year as the defending champs this time around. Perhaps LA prefers taking a new approach by flying under the radar and taking their opponents by surprise.
The 2023 season for the Rams starts the way last season ended, with a trip to the Seattle Seahawks in Week 1. If LA has any hope of somehow finding their way to Las Vegas in February, they’ll have to navigate one of the NFL’s toughest schedules first. Here are six games to watch for with the season fast approaching:
Week 1: at Seattle Seahawks (Sun 9/10)
For the first time under Sean McVay, Seattle swept the season series against LA. McVay typically had the Seahawks’ number and that holds true as he has an all-time record of 8-5 against Pete Carroll’s squad. Although I’m not sure how much I want to count the Week 18 game. The Seahawks made a stunning playoff run last season and appear ready to build upon it following another strong draft. LA gave their division rival all they could handle with backups John Wolford and Baker Mayfield starting in place of Stafford. Seattle didn’t dominate either game as they won both matchups by a combined seven points. The Rams might not be in the same stratosphere as the 49ers right now but they continue to handle the Seahawks all they want.
Week 2: vs San Francisco 49ers (Sun 9/17)
Can LA finally just get a regular season win against these guys already? Anyone? Bueller? The Rams haven’t beaten the Niners in the regular season since 2018 and don’t appear to be getting any closer to beating their archnemesis this year. LA could always end up surprising but even when they’re good, wins against San Francisco are rare. With the only series win since ‘18 coming in the NFC Championship during the team’s Super Bowl run, expect yet another sweep at the hands of their bitter divisional foe and conference favorite. Curse those stupid Whiners!
Week 3: at Cincinnati Bengals (Mon 9/25)
If you excuse me, I’d like to take a trip down memory lane for a moment:
Aaron Donald Gets To Joe Burrow on 4th Down!!!#LARvsCIN #RamsHouse pic.twitter.com/x99CcgnNig— SportsGrid (@SportsGrid) February 14, 2022
A number of players from that Rams team are gone like Jalen Ramsey and Von Miller but that glorious day will be remembered for a lifetime. Of course, LA still has Aaron Donald who is ready to inflict more nightmares on poor Joe Burrow. Sweet dreams sucker! The Rams clearly aren’t the same team compared to that Super Bowl squad but I fully expect them to give Cincy all they’ve got. Eli Apple is no longer on the Bengals so they should be able to limit Cooper Kupp a little bit better this time around. Well, Kupp is still Kupp so that’s probably wishful thinking. Cincinnati will be an AFC contender as long as their core remains intact. It would sure be a shame for the Bengals if Donald pressures that away too.
Week 5: vs Philadelphia Eagles (Sun 10/8)
This game will be a treat for everyone besides maybe the LA faithful in the stands at SoFi. But if the Colts nearly knocked off this squad last year, why can’t the Rams do the same at their place this season? Philly enters this season as the defending NFC champs and were oh-so close to winning it all had they remembered to play defense in the second half of the Big Game. Either way, the Eagles are heavily favored to repeat in the conference and it’s no surprise at all. With all due respect to Les Snead, Howie Roseman is the best GM in the league and no one is better at restocking a roster than him. Roseman practically added the entire Georgia Bulldogs defense and acquired running back D’Andre Swift for mere pennies this offseason. This matchup will be a litmus test for the Rams to see if they remain competitive against one of the game’s top signal callers in Jalen Hurts.
Every Big-Time Throw from Jalen Hurts (2022) pic.twitter.com/QK0PPioSda— James Foster (@NoFlagsFilm) May 9, 2023
Week 7: vs Pittsburgh Steelers (Sun 10/22)
Even though these teams don’t play each other very much, Los Angeles is looking for a rare win against Pittsburgh. LA’s last win in the series came in 2003 when the team was still based in St. Louis. The Rams have only played the Steelers once in the Sean McVay era and that resulted in a 17-12 loss in Aaron Donald’s return to his hometown. Under Mike Tomlin, the Steelers are always a tough out even if they have zero business being in certain games.
The streak stays alive: Mike Tomlin goes another year with a winning record, making it 16 straight seasons without a losing record. No playoffs, but still an impressive turnaround from 2-6 to 9-8. They never gave up.— JPAFootball (@jasrifootball) January 8, 2023
Future Hall Of Famer. pic.twitter.com/pBzTN0m3uS
Second-year quarterback Kenny Pickett aims to improve upon an unsteady yet promising rookie campaign. He has quite the young stud to throw to in Georgia product George Pickens. Let’s just hope that the Rams won’t be picked on too much in this one.
Week 9: at Green Bay Packers (Sun 11/5)
The bad man is finally gone so the Rams should squeak this one out at Lambeau right? Similar to the 49ers “rivalry”, the Rams haven’t beaten Green Bay since 2018. Counting the postseason, LA has played in Wisconsin the past three years and lost each game in decisive fashion. Despite the loss of Aaron Rodgers, the Pack has plenty of faith in Jordan Love who has the keys to the youthful squad around him. Wide receivers Christian Watson, Romeo Doubs and Jayden Reed have been picked within the last two drafts to grow alongside Love. Either they’ll indeed grow as the season progresses or they’ll be shredded to swiss cheese under pressure just like their supposedly elite defense in key moments. This is the best chance the Rams have in beating the Packers which could go a long way towards playoff implications should either team be in consideration this late in the year.
Which game are you the most excited for?