LA Rams - Rookie Report - 3 Rook Update
Ah, the rookies. The reason for eternal hope. For most clubs, the rookies are often the only reason for hope. Not so with the Rams as the trade for Mathew Stafford is critical, yet it's this rookie class that will hold the key to the team's long-term prospects. You have to keep the pipeline primed with talent and you need a few to step up every year or it's another blown season in the rearview mirror. Where are we right now? It's time for the Rams Rookie Report.
Rams Rookie Report
WR Tutu Atwell
Tutu on punt return duty? Oh yea! The Rams need every splash play they can get on game day. In order to maximize their potential this club needs to have big plays in every phase of the game. It is the way this team is put together. In most cases becoming an effective WR in the NFL is not an overnight effect. This is a great way to get a talented rookie involved in the game plan.
WR Ben Skowronek
6'3" gives one the frame to hang a big catch radius (33 1/4" arms) for contested catches on as well as the attitude and power of a willing and effective blocker (220 lbs). Skowronek gives you all of that and (according to scouts) he has "savvy route-running ability" which is something a lot of big-body WRs don't bring to the party. Skowronek's potential, of course, slots him in as a plus player on special teams.
The Rams line up on any given play that normally features WRs that run 5'10", 6', and 6'1" that are all "savvy route-runners" so adding a 6'3" guy to the mix who will understand what is going on and get to the right spots can be a huge difference, especially in the RedZone. Oh, yea. Skowronek may have been a 7th round selection in the NFL Draft but he has a solid shot at a roster spot and I see him being in the rotation.
LB Ernest Jones
6' 1 1/2", 230 lbs, 33 3/8" arms, 10 3/8" hands Jones was scouted as in inside, 2-down, 3-4 LB and I agree. What is not mentioned with most of those reports is he is a stud in that role. His instincts and quick reads allow him to play quicker than his 40 time. He is not the guy you want chasing down a 4.3 slot receiver downfield. But for reacting inside the box, shutting down the run, covering the underneath zones, not making mental errors, and making plays? THIS is your guy.
Reports are he is grasping the playbook, making his reads and calls as the Mike LB does, and seems natural in the role. He has reportedly, had some star-struck moments around Aaron Donald. But once the whistle blows he's all business and is quickly finding his groove with the vets.
It was the 3rd round of the NFL draft when the club made the call on Jones. Some teams get hung up on athleticism, top-end speed, etc. The wiser clubs draft football players. That is what it's looking like the organization did here.
Another Left Coast Sports Post
on Twitter: Steven Van Over
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