The Los Angeles Rams finally did it. After hyping up expectations since moving to the West Coast, the Rams won the Super Bowl last season. This year, they’ll try to become the first team to win back-to-back championships since the New England Patriots did it back in 2003 and 2004.
The Rams’ championship run started in the spring of 2021 when the team made a blockbuster trade with the Detroit Lions to land quarterback Matthew Stafford. A huge upgrade over Jared Goff, Stafford was instrumental in leading a top-10 offense. That wasn’t the only big move they made to build a championship roster. During the season, the team made moves to acquire pass rusher Von Miller from the Broncos and Odell Beckham from the Browns.
Los Angeles stayed busy in free agency this spring too. It started with re-signing some of their own players, mostly along the offensive line. The team locked down center Brian Allen and left tackle Joseph Noteboom to long-term deals. So far, they haven’t re-signed Beckham, despite some predictions that they still could do so. However, Beckham is recovering from a torn ACL suffered in the Super Bowl. But they landed another big name receiver to pair with Cooper Kupp, inking Allen Robinson to a $46.5 million deal. On defense, they signed linebacker Bobby Wager to shore up the middle of their stop unit.
Defending the title is not going to be. In their division, the Cardinals also made a long list of offseason moves in hopes of taking over the NFC West. The 49ers, who have given the Rams trouble in the past, are still among the favorites in the NFC this season. Their schedule isn’t an easy one either. They’ll face other title contenders like the Bills and Buccaneers, plus, they’re scheduled to face off against an incredibly tough AFC West division this year, including a road game against the Chiefs.
Here’s an early look at how the Rams might fare in 2022.
Week 1: vs. Buffalo Bills LOSS (0-1)
Week 2: vs. Atlanta Falcons WIN (1-1)
Week 3: at Arizona Cardinals WIN (2-1)
Week 4: at San Francisco 49ers LOSS (2-2)
Week 5: vs. Dallas Cowboys WIN (3-2)
Week 6: vs. Carolina Panthers WIN (4-2)
Week 7: BYE
Week 8: vs. San Francisco 49ers WIN (5-2)
Week 9: at Tampa Bay Buccaneers LOSS (5-3)
Week 10: vs. Arizona Cardinals LOSS (5-4)
Week 11: at New Orleans Saints WIN (6-4)
Week 12: at Kansas City Chiefs LOSS (6-5)
Week 13: vs. Seattle Seahawks WIN (7-5)
Week 14: vs. Las Vegas Raiders WIN (8-5)
Week 15: at Green Bay Packers WIN (9-5)
Week 16: vs. Denver Broncos LOSS (9-6)
Week 17: at Los Angeles Chargers WIN (10-6)
Week 18: at Seattle Seahawks WIN (11-6)
That’s not an easy schedule. The Rams have tough road game against the Bucs and Chiefs within a four-week span. Heck, even a road date with the Saints during that stretch is nothing to take for granted. A Week 15 road trip to Green Bay is no cake walk either. We’re predicting a win, based on the Packers’ so-so offseason, but with Aaron Rodgers and the Wisconsin weather, anything can happen.
Still games against the NFC South, a home-and-home with the rebuilding Seahawks, and the Rams still being an incredibly tough team, they should be able to finish with 11 wins or more this season.
Win total odds: 10.5 -110
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