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Winners and Losers from Rams 41-0 loss to Broncos

Were there any winners?

NFL: Preseason-Los Angeles Rams at Denver Broncos Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

If the L.A. Rams could even just have sorted out their special teams unit this offseason, that would have seemed like a good head start for the rebuild. Instead, new coordinator Chase Blackburn is not off to an ideal start because his special teams players are not off to ideal starts.

The Rams may need to sign a kicker this week, their third of the offseason if that happens, because rookie Tanner Brown missed again. Rookie punter Ethan Evans is still booming 53 yard punts that his coverage unit can’t catch up to all the time. L.A. doesn’t seem to have anyone sparking the offense with electric returns on punts or kicks quite yet.

It would be hard to choose just one main person having the worst day or the worst preseason for the Rams, now 0-3 after losing 41-0 to the Broncos and none of the losses have been close or competitive. But Blackburn might be the one. He might be the main person. But he’s not alone.


QB Stetson Bennett

Whenever Bennett’s football career is over, whether that day comes in 20 years or much sooner, he will retire with two national championships. He’ll always have one of the best college football stories of all-time, which isn’t bad.

K Tanner Brown

He’s missed three kicks in the preseason, two of them were relatively short attempts that didn’t even come close.

Sean McVay and Les Snead

Credit McVay for talking to Andrew Siciliano while his team was down 24-0. Credit Les Snead for sitting in the booth and literally calling the touchdown for the Broncos when Tyler Badie scored against L.A. and extended Denver’s lead. They sat through a nightmare and didn’t back down from the spotlight, which is commendable.

That being said, if the Rams play like this in the regular season then we have to agree that there was never a plan that included McVay and Snead deciding, “Okay, we’ll win the Super Bowl and then intentionally be very bad for two years.” That wasn’t the plan and these are the backups that were chosen by this regime. How many will still be here in 2025?

OL Logan Bruss

Not to pick on Bruss because there’s no reason to single out any of these offensive linemen for poor play. Forget about “poor play” because everybody pretty much played poorly. Instead, talk about what Bruss has been through in the last 12 months: The Rams now have him playing left tackle, his third or fourth position switch since being drafted. There are two reasons that you change a player’s position: 1) he’s very good and a player gets hurt somewhere else, so you move him. 2) He’s not very good and you’re trying to salvage him. I don’t see an injury at left tackle. Bruss might be released.

RB Zach Evans

It’s not as though Evans had many good opportunities, but he does finish the preseason with 23 carries for 77 yards, averaging 3.3 yards per carry. He had seven carries for 23 yards on Saturday and may have lost out RB3 to Ronnie Rivers.

WR Lance McCutcheon

Added one catch for seven yards to his preseason tally, giving him three catches for 35 yards in three games. McCutcheon won’t make the cut, which is a tough blow for someone who McVay decided to keep last season. What did McVay see in McCutcheon then that didn’t lead to opportunities in the regular season or this preseason?

CB Robert Rochell

The Rams drafted nine players in 2021. I’m going to rank them really quick, from worst to best: OLB Chris Garrett, RB Jake Funk, WR/TE Jacob Harris, CB Robert Rochell, DL Earnest Brown IV, DT Bobby Brown, WR Tutu Atwell, WR Ben Skowronek, LB Ernest Jones.

How many of those nine players from 2021 are going to be key contributors in 2023? I’m not sure that Rochell has demanded that he make the roster.


QB Dresser Winn

He got to play.

WR Austin Trammell

Finished with easily the team-best: 55 yards on five catches. Nobody else had more than 15 yards. Trammell is the go-to option for L.A.’s backup QBs, signaling he’s the most reliable in practice.

LB Quindell Johnson

Team-high six tackles with a sack.

RB Ronnie Rivers

Is there a scenario in which Rivers becomes a starter this season? Of course! There’s a scenario like that for just about everyone who makes the team.

Almost everyone who sat out

Guys like Kobie Turner, Byron Young, Russ Yeast, Jake Hummel, Tremayne Anchrum, Steve Avila, Puka Nacua, and Demarcus Robinson didn’t have anything more to prove.