Every time I watch film on Goff… I become less impressed with the Rams offense around Goff in 2020.
This is a little lengthy… but I just can’t believe that there is not more talk about how the Rams were a much better team in 2018 because the O-line as better and Cooks was huge in their success.
The 2020 o-line was not very good. I watched every snap against the Jets, and they were terrible.
Even though Whitworth was out with injury, it was Blythe (OC) and Corbett (RG) who were owned by Quinnen Williams, Nathan Shepherd, and John Franklin-Myers. The Rams only got back into the Jets game after Q. Williams left with an injury.
When the Rams did have the ball late in the game, McVay opted not to try a 54 yard field goal that would have tied the game with 4 minutes remaining. Even though a 54 yarder is no gimme, Matt Gay was 1 for 1 over 50 yards and 8 for 9 over 40 yards. a tie game would have completely changed the strategy for the remainder of the game. Instead… the Rams went for it on 4th and 4… didn’t get it… and the Jets ran out the clock. I think it was a poor coaching decision.
When the Rams did actually try to throw the ball down the field in that game… their targets were the TEs and RB. They tried a slot fade to Cam Akers, a slot fade to Everett, and a play-action pass set up for a wide open Higbee… which Goff couldn’t throw because the protection failed within 2 seconds of the snap. The WRs were all running hooks at the sticks, and the DBs just squatted on their routes.
Defenses figured out what the Rams were doing, and the fact that the Rams had no deep threats. Time and time again… you can see coverage just sitting on short routes.
In this picture… the Bears have 6 guys in coverage within 5 yards of LOS… and only 1 deep safety.
Check this out against Green Bay… 8 players drop… but not 1 of them is deeper than 14 yeards off LOS.
Here against Bills… 1st and 10. Bills have 10 players within 6 yards of LOS… and play action pass fails to generate a decent downfield look. They had vertical routes with Kupp and Reynolds, and Goff was forced to check it down to the RB.
And… of course… the infamous Dolphins game with 11 defenders within 9 yards of LOS.
Now… take a look at 2018 defenses against the Rams.
Chiefs show pressure… and have 9 guys within 5 yards of LOS on a 1st and 10 play.
1 of the safeties is 10 yards deep, and the other even deeper.
But… even though they have run action with a HEALTHY Gurley… the safety origianally 10 yards deep has dropped out of view to at least 14 yards deep.
When Goff unloads the pass to a WR 20 yards downfield… there are 4 defenders that are 12+ yards deep on that side of the field alone… plus 2 more on the other side of the field not in view. They had 6 guys over 12 yards deep, and another was at 10 yards!
Why is that?
Brandin Cooks is 40 yards downfield… within 5 seconds of the snap!!!
Here is another play… that was 2nd and 5 at the 25 yard line.
The Vikings start with 10 guys near the LOS… but within 4 seconds of the snap… the Rams have 3 WRs >20 yards deep and the Vikings have 5 guys deeper than 20 yards.
And… yes… that is Cooks at the top of screen… 35+ yards downfield drawing the deep safety away from Kupp so he can catch the pass.
It is very hard to find any video of Rams WRs running >20 yards downfield in the 2020 season.
Cooks caught 80 balls for 1200 yards in 2018 and provided the deep threat they missed in 2020.
And people wonder what happened to Goff’s stats?