This article is to give the Rams’ Pov of the NFC West. The Rams are the current favorites to claim the NFC West in 2022. This won’t necessarily be easy. The NFC West has been an obstacle for a while now. All four teams have made a Super Bowl appearance in the past 15 years. That is an impressive feature. The point being this division has been wildly competitive. And right now, the NFC West is in an interesting era.
The Rams, From the Rams’ POV
First, let’s do some self-evaluating from the Rams’ Pov. The NFC West contains the defending champions, the Rams. The Rams have about 4-5 more years before their current stars move on and are left with a shell of what they once were. They still have plenty of time before Stafford, Kupp, Donald, and Ramsey all head out. This gives them some breathing room. So, there’s still time to gather players that they can build around ten years from now. Players like Van Jefferson, Cam Akers, Kyren Williams, Jordan Fuller, and Ernest Jones are all guys that can potentially be leaders in the post-McVay era of the Rams.
Though they only have a few key young pieces, the Rams are still a powerhouse. At this point in time, the NFC West is theirs to lose. On paper, this current roster in LA is one to go back-to-back with. Whether the Rams can manage to do so is an entirely different question. They are well coached and have a high amount of talent on both sides of the ball. They have the least amount of question marks in the division and have the highest ceiling going into 2022. Can the Rams repeat?
The Arizona Cardinals have just recently extended their quarterback, Kyler Murray, to be their franchise guy for the foreseeable future. Murray has been impressive since entering the league, but he has been a tad inconsistent. That could be said about the majority of Kliff Kingsbury’s tenure as Arizona’s head coach. The Cardinals often get hot, but they have yet to put it all together at the end of the season to go on a playoff run. We have seen what they can do, and now Arizona needs to maintain consistency.
From the Rams’ Pov, the Cardinals are arguably their biggest threat in the NFC West. They have reloaded their offense, reuniting Marquise Brown with his old college QB. After a strong season last year, Kyler Murray still has more to improve on. Though the Cardinals look good going into 2022, it is tough to say they are better than they were last year. There was a point last year where the Cardinals felt like they were the best team in the NFC. One crucial piece the Cardinals are missing is Chandler Jones. The loss of Jones immediately brought a hole to Arizona’s edge rush. The Cardinals have more than enough talent to make a run at the top of the division for years to come, could this year be the year they topple McVay’s Rams?
2021’s NFC runners-up are entering this season with a bit of uncertainty. Jimmy Garoppolo has recently been allowed to search for a trade. This scenario seems unlikely unless a team’s starter gets injured. Garoppolo is expected to be released, as there doesn’t seem to be much of a market for him. Garoppolo is coming off of shoulder surgery and is easing back into throwing. The last time fans saw Jimmy G, he was saying his goodbyes after the NFC Championship loss against the Rams. Deebo Samuel is another question mark for the 49ers. Deebo’s contract situation is still up in the air, and he doesn’t want to run the ball nearly as much anymore.
This means Kyle Shanahan’s offense will look quite different this year. 2021 rookie Trey Lance is expected to be the starter come week one for San Francisco. Lance has a unique skill set, he has a cannon of an arm, track speed, and the size of a linebacker. Watching this skillset added to Shanahan’s offense should be very entertaining. There is a reason the 49ers made it to the NFC championship last year. They are a dangerous team that is extremely well-coached. Go ahead and expect the 49ers to make it back to the playoffs. The San Fransisco has had the Rams’ number over the past few years, can this season be the end of the Rams’ regular-season drought against the 49ers?
This is where the level of competition in the NFC West takes a bit of a dip. From the Rams’ Pov, the Seahawks are the last team in the division to worry about. Before this season, the Seahawks were a consistent favorite to win the division for years. These expectations went up in flames around the same time that Russell Wilson was shipped off and Bobby Wagner was cut. Now, with a shell of what they once were, the Seahawks are rebuilding. Their current QB battle is not necessarily being held in high regard. Many believe Seattle will end up with Jimmy Garoppolo. This would be a move that makes sense, but an inter-divisional trade doesn’t seem likely.
The Seahawks still have key players to help them steal wins this year. DK Metcalf is one of the best young wideouts the game has to offer. Tyler Lockett is a very good wide receiver as well. Jamal Adams is exceptional at getting to ball carriers, and Quandre Diggs is great in coverage and to make up Seattle’s safety tandem. Though there is still plenty of work to be done, the Seahawks aren’t “dead in the water”. Pete Carroll is nearing the end of his coaching career, so don’t expect him to go out without a fight.
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