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 by Hacksaw
2 months ago
 Total posts:   16461  
 Joined:  Apr 15 2015
United States of America   AT THE BEACH
Moderator

Are fingers pointed in the right direction?

 by moklerman
2 months ago
 Total posts:   5687  
 Joined:  Apr 17 2015
United States of America   Bakersfield, CA
Hall of Fame

AvengerRam wrote:But its not the whole point. I, for example, provided an explanation as to why it was, at worst a miscommunication, and I never used (or even implied) the term "thrown open."

You express opposition to everyone, not just whomever used the term "thrown open."

To quote Yoda... "That, is why you fail."
Yes, it was THE point of my reply. It was directed at those who were claiming he was throwing Woods open. If one wasn't saying that, then it wasn't directed at them.

 by PARAM
2 months ago
 Total posts:   4300  
 Joined:  Jul 15 2015
Barbados   Just far enough North of Philadelphia
Superstar

/zn/ wrote:It's actually 2 in Chicago


I know, in the same year. Now this year, he's got 2. And including the other stops when starting rookies, those teams went a combined 40-21 with the 2015 Bills being 8-8 as the low.

 by Elvis
2 months ago
 Total posts:   24185  
 Joined:  Mar 28 2015
United States of America   Los Angeles
Administrator

Does Kromer get credit for the drafting, development and performance of Evans and Edwards? Any credit for identifying Corbett as someone who could contribute and getting him up to speed in next to no time?

What about 2017 and 2018?

Or is it just the bad stuff Kromer is responsible for?

Honestly, seems like some pretty sweet snake oil he's selling, might be interested in buying some myself.

And the Rams are doing this on very little cap money:


 by Elvis
2 months ago
 Total posts:   24185  
 Joined:  Mar 28 2015
United States of America   Los Angeles
Administrator

https://theathletic.com/1453403/2019/12 ... =twittered

Rams can’t afford another mistake on their offensive line, so Bobby Evans must stay

By Rich Hammond Dec 11, 2019

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. — The Rams are now parents of a newborn, one they’ve just been able to get settled. It’s time to tiptoe out of the room slowly, so as not to create any further fuss.

Imagine hearing before Week 1 that the Rams would thrive in mid-December with an offensive line of Andrew Whitworth, Austin Corbett, Austin Blythe, David Edwards and Bobby Evans. At that point, Edwards and Evans hadn’t played an NFL regular-season game and Corbett was languishing in Cleveland.

Yet as the Rams learned better than any team this season, it’s difficult to project an offensive line. A team sometimes has to go where the line takes it, and right now, after a couple months of searching, the Rams seem to have found the right mix. That’s why they must continue to start Evans over Rob Haventstein at right tackle when they play the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday, and perhaps beyond.

“I think you see those (linemen) getting more and more comfortable,” head coach Sean McVay said this week. “They’re confident, they’re physical, they’ve got athleticism. I’ve been really pleased with that group.”

This isn’t easy. Havenstein has been a full-time starter at right tackle since 2015. He served as a cornerstone of the NFL’s best offense in 2017 and 2018. He’s been effective, he’s been a good teammate and the Rams rewarded him in August 2018 with a four-year, $32 million contract extension.

Havenstein is in the final stages of recovering from a knee injury that has sidelined him for the last four games (he was a full participant in Wednesday’s walk-through practice). To suggest he should be benched in favor of Evans, a 22-year-old rookie, on some levels might be illogical and impractical. Yet the Rams, the defending NFC champions, are in a fight just to make the playoffs, and they shouldn’t make any adjustments to their line until it’s obvious that they must.

“We’re going to monitor that as the week progresses,” McVay said Wednesday of Havenstein’s role. “It’s something we feel good about. If he is able to go, we’re getting another really good football player back. In terms of what capacity, we have not made that decision.”

Evans, a third-round pick from Oklahoma, entered his rookie season with low expectations and sat on the inactive list for the first six games. At the time of his drafting, pundits criticized Evans’ lack of height (6-foot-4) and athleticism, with many considering him to be a long-term project at best.

The Rams, with few other options, turned to Evans in Week 10 against Chicago. He has now played 256 snaps with only one sack allowed and zero penalties. For some context, Havenstein has played 616 snaps, with five sacks allowed and eight penalties.

Asked if he felt ready to join the starting lineup as a rookie, Evans said: “I did. I definitely did. This is something I’ve been working for since I was in second grade.”

“I would say I’m better in certain areas, as far as my pass blocking,” he added. “I’m definitely improved compared to where I was at the start of the season. Also in the run game, I think I’ve been able to move some guys around and open some holes for (Todd) Gurley.”

Evans vs. Havenstein is not exactly a straight-line comparison. Havenstein played next to Blythe — who struggled mightily at right guard before a move to center — and did not benefit from the Rams’ evolution to more “12” personnel looks, in which the right tackle is more often helped by a blocking tight end. That said, Evans is playing next to a fellow rookie (Edwards) and came in with zero practical experience. He has done well.

And that’s really where the analysis should stop. Even if, on some level, it makes practical sense to go back to Havenstein, the Rams can’t do it now. Maybe late-season stress will get to Evans and force a change, but that can’t be predicted. Evans already has bounced back from one poor game against Baltimore — the entire Rams offense was awful that night — with two consecutive solid efforts.

“It’s been a major improvement,” McVay said of Evans’ progress since the draft. “I’ve been really impressed, when you look at some of the players he has gone against, the caliber of big-time guys and the way he has been able to perform.”

The Rams used five different starting offensive-line combinations in their first 10 games. That is startling for a unit that enjoyed so much stability and success the previous two seasons.

The line seems to have settled in. Whitworth remains a rock, and his play has improved after some surprising early-season dips. Corbett, a No. 33 overall pick just 20 months ago who was acquired from the Browns for only a (2021) fifth-round pick in October, has been steady at left guard. Edwards, a fifth-round pick this year, has had some penalty issues but is doing fine for a rookie right guard. With this current group of starting linemen in place, the Rams have allowed only three sacks in their last four games.

The Rams also have helped their young linemen in recent games with an increase in two-tight-end sets and a rededication to the run game. They have been utilizing Gurley more, in a traditional sense for a running back, and have been using receivers in the run game with jet sweeps.

“Any time you can start working the perimeter and inside, you really start to stretch the defense because they’re not sure what to play,” Whitworth said of the run game. “It just puts them in a tough spot. They have to commit one way or another to stop something. That’s just kind of the efficiency that, in years past, we’ve had and that we’re starting to get back.”

Which is another reason why the Rams shouldn’t do any more tinkering with the line now. It started during the offseason, when they believed they could replace two veterans (left guard Rodger Saffold and center John Sullivan) with two second-year linemen (Joe Noteboom and Brian Allen). Noteboom started slow — and likely made life difficult for Whitworth, who uncharacteristically struggled in early-season games — before suffering a major knee injury in Week 6.

Allen also showed improvement before his own knee injury in Week 9, but it’s notable that Rams offensive players — without drawing negative comparisons to Allen — have had strong praise for Blythe’s communication and poise since he replaced Allen at center. Would Noteboom and Allen be thriving now if they stayed healthy? It’s possible, which makes the Rams’ long-term planning even more interesting.

The one stable position since the start of 2017 — left tackle — is about to become the biggest issue. Whitworth, who turns 38 on Thursday, is set to become an unrestricted free agent. Retirement is a possibility, particularly since he pondered it after last season, but Whitworth is playing at a high level. Presumably, there’s a chance the Rams could convince him to return on a short-term contract. If not, well, the options aren’t great.

In an ideal world, Noteboom would have thrived this season at left guard before sliding over to tackle. Instead, he underwent major knee surgery in October. With a normal recovery time, Noteboom could be ready for the start of next season, but it’s doubtful that the Rams would feel comfortable with him taking over at left tackle without a full offseason to prepare.

Havenstein has played right tackle on a full-time basis since his time at the University of Wisconsin started in 2011. Evans played left tackle last season at Oklahoma, but if he were to change positions during his NFL career, it most likely would be at guard, given his physical attributes.

The Rams have more options inside but still must make some decisions. Blythe is set to become a free agent after this season. Given the way the offense has thrived with him at center, do the Rams retain Blythe and move Allen to guard, where he played during three of his four years at Michigan State?

Noteboom and Edwards also are options inside, and it seems increasingly likely that Corbett, who is under contract through the 2021 season, will be a part of the Rams’ plans in some form.

Then there’s right tackle. As recently as this fall, the Rams clearly believed Havenstein had locked down that position. If the Rams are ready to flip that plan and commit to Evans, what would that mean for Havenstein? He has an annual salary-cap hit of approximately $8 million through the 2022 season, and the Rams can’t cut him after this season because he has a dead-cap hit of $6.15 million.

Given the Rams’ relative lack of depth at tackle — independent of what might happen with Whitworth — the wise move seemingly would be to keep Havenstein no matter what. But considering that players such as Jared Goff, Todd Gurley, Brandin Cooks and Aaron Donald are set for raises in 2020, could the Rams really afford to keep a high-salaried backup lineman?

That’s getting ahead of things a little bit. Evans has had significant action in only four NFL games, so it’s premature to project something dramatic. But Evans’ strong play thus far has given the Rams some options for the future and has — if they’re smart — secured his place in the lineup for now.

“I’m just going to keep grinding,” Evans said Wednesday. “It doesn’t matter if (Havenstein) is starting or I’m starting. I’m all about the team and about my guys.”

 by /zn/
2 months ago
 Total posts:   4808  
 Joined:  Jun 28 2015
United States of America   Maine
Superstar

PARAM wrote:I know, in the same year. Now this year, he's got 2. And including the other stops when starting rookies, those teams went a combined 40-21 with the 2015 Bills being 8-8 as the low.


First, you're arguing with someone who said "they don't start rookies." That's a mistake. No one said that.

Here's what was actually said:

This team tends to be slow about playing rookies... The exceptions (Kupp and Rapp) were unusually pro-ready players. Johnson, for example, did not start in 2017 until game 5, even though it was clear the minute he started that he was superior to Alexander. Demby just had more time in the system so until the rookies had a little more seasoning and coaching, then they were going to wait.

And yeah that is born out. This year, the OL rookies would not have started but for injuries. And even then before they turned to the rookies, they started a 2-year guy who did not hold up. So the first rookie saw the field in 2019 after they both lost NB and then Demby proved he simply could not cut it. That suggests the same thing we saw in 2017 when Johnson was clearly superior to Alexander, yet they waited 5 games to start him.

...

 by /zn/
2 months ago
 Total posts:   4808  
 Joined:  Jun 28 2015
United States of America   Maine
Superstar

Elvis wrote:Does Kromer get credit for the drafting, development and performance of Evans and Edwards? Any credit for identifying Corbett as someone who could contribute and getting him up to speed in next to no time?


My take, though I am kind of "cutting in." Yes he gets credit. First, no GM in his right mind just drafts for an OL coach and makes that coach adapt to what he gets. OL coaches are heavily involved in drafting. We know for absolute certain fact that Hanifan was, Boudreau was, and Kromer was. Snead gives Kromer a lot of credit as someone involved in the drafts and the trade.

OL coaches want certain types and emphasize certain things and they help hunt for those things.

Kromer has been an OL coach since the Saints in 2009. In that time, before the Rams, his teams--with him involved--drafted 8 linemen. 2 were misses, 2 were serviceable starters, and 4 were absolute hits. And the hits include both a 1st rounder and a 7th rounder. That hit percentage is way higher than anything we saw with Hanifan or Boudreau, who overall were pretty bad at picking them.

In terms of hitting on Edwards and Evans (and quite probably NB as a tackle)--that's at least 2 out of 5 without a first rounder and probably 3 out of 5. Not bad. Plus, you just don't usually see teams field 3 OL injury replacements during the season and hold up, let alone 3 that include (a) 2 lower round rookies, and (b) a guy who was acquired mid-season in a trade. Yet so far this OL looks good. That does NOT happen if you don't have a very good OL coach.

....

 by PARAM
2 months ago
 Total posts:   4300  
 Joined:  Jul 15 2015
Barbados   Just far enough North of Philadelphia
Superstar

/zn/ wrote:First, you're arguing with someone who said "they don't start rookies." That's a mistake. No one said that.


I'm not "arguing" with anybody. Simple showed that Kromer has coached up rookies in his previous stops and those teams were winners with the exception of the Bills who were 8-8. But that team had the NFL's #1 rushing offense in both yards and yards per carry.

 by /zn/
2 months ago
 Total posts:   4808  
 Joined:  Jun 28 2015
United States of America   Maine
Superstar

PARAM wrote:I'm not "arguing" with anybody. Simple showed that Kromer has coached up rookies in his previous stops and those teams were winners with the exception of the Bills who were 8-8. But that team had the NFL's #1 rushing offense in both yards and yards per carry.


So it is understood and completely agreed that no one said the Rams, let along Kromer, "do not start rookies."

Yes Kromer's history is stellar. I know you personally know all this, just getting it down in black n white. That stellar history includes his 2009 superbowl OL, which consisted of one 2nd round pick, 2 4th round picks, and 2 5th round picks. He did not pick those guys--in that case he inherited them--but he made the most out of what he had. That includes one of the highest rated guards in the last decade, Jahri Evans.

 by aeneas1
2 months ago
 Total posts:   12013  
 Joined:  Sep 13 2015
United States of America   Norcal
Hall of Fame

percentage of cap spent on oline - 2019:

1. cowboys 25.3%
-----------------------
9. rams 15.9%
-----------------------
25. seahawks 11.9%
26. niners 11.7%
30. patriots 9.4%

league average 14.4%

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107 posts Feb 26 2020