While the summer season brings much enjoyment to the average person, for an NFL fan, it represents a desolate wasteland where Sundays just aren't quite as vibrant as in the autumn months. However, with each passing day, we inch closer to the beginning of the 2023 NFL season, which officially kicks off on September 8 this year.
Whether you've had your favorite team's tweet notifications turned on all summer or if you've decided to tune out all football news entirely, you'll be able to learn everything you need to know about your team going into the 2022-23 season right here.
In today's article, I'll be discussing the Los Angeles Rams.
I'm working on season guidebooks for all 32 NFL teams, which will all be released within the next few weeks. To check out another team's guidebook, click here:
2021 Season Recap
The Rams achieved what every team aspired to do last season in winning the Super Bowl in a 23-20 thriller against the Bengals. Los Angeles acquired Matthew Stafford before last season began, and he ended up leading the team to a championship in his first season outside of Detroit.
L.A. was excellent for most of the season in 2021, having loads of talent across the board on both offense and defense. They'll look to repeat that success in 2022 as they attempt to defend their title and repeat as Super Bowl champs.
Significant Roster Moves
The Rams lost a few key pieces in their Super Bowl season, headlined by the departures of last season's mid-season additions, Von Miller and O'Dell Beckham, Jr. Robert Woods missed the final part of last year with a torn ACL, and he signed with the Titans in the offseason. Sony Michel was a quality running back in L.A.'s rotation a season ago, but he signed with the Dolphins. Long-time offensive tackle Andrew Whitworth decided to go out on top after his Super Bowl title, retiring in the offseason to cap off a 16-year NFL career.
The Rams did an excellent job replacing their most significant departures, which was led by the acquisition of Allen Robinson, who has been restricted by his prior teams' lack of offensive fortitude in his career thus far. They also signed Brandon Powell, who will take on kick and punt returning responsibilities primarily. Bobby Wagner joins the team as a starting inside linebacker after a tremendous career with division rivals, Seattle. Troy Hill was traded from Cleveland back to L.A. this offseason, and he'll be more valuable in his second stint with the Rams in his young career.
2022 Draft Class
The Rams had eight selections in this year's draft, focusing more on the defense than the offense. However, since five of their eight picks came in the final two rounds, they will mostly serve as role players as they begin their NFL careers. None of the guys in L.A.'s draft class have cracked the starting lineup as of now, though Logan Bruss and Kyren Williams have the best odds of doing of everyone drafted.
The Rams will take on the NFC South and the AFC West to go along with their six divisional games. Their other three opponents are the Buffalo Bills, Dallas Cowboys, and Green Bay Packers. With an opponent prior season win percentage of .567, Los Angeles has the hardest schedule in the NFL.
Los Angeles will kick off the NFL regular season in a Thursday night game versus Buffalo. Their other primetime games include another Thursday night game versus Las Vegas, one Sunday night game at the Los Angeles Chargers, and two Monday night games at San Francisco and Green Bay.
The Rams return 16 of their 22 offensive and defensive starters from a season ago, which is about average for all teams in the league. However, they've held onto most of their important pieces from last season's Super Bowl team, and found adequate replacements for those players they lost in the offseason. The team is set up to find plenty of success again in 2022.
Sean McVay enters his 6th season as head coach of the Rams, a role where he has found tremendous success in what Los Angeles hopes is a very long tenure with the team. Raheem Morris and Joe DeCamillis will take on their second season in their respective roles with the Rams in 2022, while Liam Coen will assume offensive coordinator responsibilities for the first time this season.
Oddsmakers have set the regular season win total for Los Angeles at 10.5 games. As of right now, the Rams are the most likely team to win the NFC West, but just the 3rd most likely team to win the whole NFC. At +1200 to win the 2023 Super Bowl, they are 5th among all teams in the league.
Bucket Squad Predictions
I have high expectations for the Rams again in 2022, as I think they'll be in "win now" mode as long as Matthew Stafford is Sean McVay's guy in L.A. I think they've done a great job replacing some of the core guys who contributed to last year's Super Bowl, and their roster is set up to continue to have lots of success this season.
The Rams are currently the best team in the NFC in my opinion, and I'm predicting them to win the NFC West and the NFC with a 13-4 record in 2022. They definitely have the team that could win a Super Bowl again this season, but stay tuned for my official postseason predictions where I'll officially announce how far I think they'll go in the playoffs.
What do you think? Will Los Angeles be better or worse than I'm projecting? What offseason moves made by the Rams surprised you the most? Leave a comment down below and be sure to check the "NFL" section of the website for more NFL team guidebooks as I finish them.
Written by Nick Swatson
Expert Nick Swatson discusses all the news, predictions, and outcomes surrounding the NFL.