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This Rams wide receiver was a standout in joint-practice with Raiders

Rams head coach Sean McVay was impressed with TuTu Atwell in joint-practice with Raiders

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NFL: Los Angeles Rams Minicamp Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Rams are practicing with the Las Vegas Raiders this week as they prepare to play each other on Saturday in Week 2 of the preseason. While there were some extracurricular activities, involving running back Cam Akers and defensive end Maxx Crosby, there were some positives from the practice as well.

One player who really stood out and garnered praise from head coach Sean McVay and quarterback Matthew Stafford was wide receiver TuTu Atwell. According to The Athletic’s Jourdan Rodrigue, Atwell as a standout during the joint practice. The Rams’ Stu Jackson added that, “Atwell made a couple of impressive catches, connecting with Stafford on contested catch in traffic off a play-action fake.”

McVay highlighted a play from Atwell in his post-practice press conference and was quoted saying,

“He made a lot of plays and that’s been consistent from the spring and it’s one day, but what I love about Tutu is the work that he’s put in is paying off...He’s super smart. He can play all over the formation in our offense. I think he’s playing physical at the catchpoint too. One of my favorite plays, he obviously made a great track down the field over his shoulder, but he also made a nice physical contested play on an outbreak off of a play action where he was kind of getting tugged, they got the flag and then he found a way to still come down with it, so playing big. He’s got a lot of confidence that has been earned and we want to continue to do that and I think he and (QB) Matthew (Stafford) are getting a great rapport because of the work that they put in.”

The play described by McVay is one that due to his size, some aren’t sure that he can make consistently in the NFL. Atwell looks to have gotten stronger and is a player that McVay has talked about as having improved a lot this offseason. The former second-round pick is playing all over the formation in the offense at different spots.

Stafford added to what McVay said when he spoke to the media as well. Here’s what he had to say,

“We had some nice plays down the field. (WR) Tutu (Atwell) had a really nice day. I don’t know if you guys can tell. I don’t know what you guys can see from back there, but he did a really nice job today, had some big plays for us.

This is going to be a big year for TuTu Atwell. After spending most of his rookie season injured, he finally started to make some plays down the field last season, but remained one dimensional. If he can continue to add to his game and contribute in other spots, it’s hard to see him not getting more time in the offense.

The Raiders defense isn’t one to write home about by any means. In one play in the video shared by the Rams social media team, it appears Atwell beats Tyler Hall who is a former undrafted free agent. On the following play, he beats former Rams defensive back David Long.

Either way, it’s still nice to see Atwell making plays against another team’s defense and in pads. It will be important for the Rams wide receiver to carry these performance into Sundays during the regular season. However, this is a positive development.