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The Los Angeles Rams have one of the best offenses in the NFL. They appear so dominant that some experts are already penciling them in the Super Bowl. However, their defense could the Achilles heel that cause them to fall short of that.
Recently, the Rams were battle tested on Monday night football and defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 54-51. That the 3rd highest scoring game in NFL history. A lot of credit can be given to the offense for putting up monster points. At the same time, the defense couldn’t stop a nosebleed.
Yes, the Chiefs offense is the best in the league. That is one reason to give the defense a bit of slack. Nevertheless, the Rams' defense invested the most money into their defense in the offseason. They need to play better if they want to advance in the playoffs.
The Rams added a ton of talent to the defensive side of the ball in the offseason. First, they traded for Marcus Peters, a talented cornerback, from the Kansas City Chiefs. The price was a 2019 second-round pick and 2018 fourth-round pick.
Next, the Denver Broncos send Aqib Talib to the Rams for a 2018 fifth round pick. Talk about a steal of the season. The Rams traded two low draft picks for veteran cornerbacks who have a combined seven Pro Bowls under their belt. Instantly, they have one of the best cornerback duos in the league.
Over the summer, Aaron Donald, the best defensive tackle in football was holding out during training camp. According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Donald signed a $135 million contract, including $87 million guaranteed.
Adding Donald wasn’t enough. The Rams signed Ndamukong Suh, a three-time pro bowler to a one-year deal worth $14 million. Initially, the idea of Suh playing alongside Donald sounded like a fantasy team. Shannon Sharpe and Skip Bayliss discussed how they viewed the addition of Suh.
When a team adds three defenders who have a combined ten Pro Bowls, giving up 50 points is unacceptable. Their run defense is garbage. “Terrible without question” Suh replied when asked about the defense.
The Rams gave up 190 rushing yards to the Seattle Seahawks. Five games prior to that, they have given up 534 rushing yards. Luckily their offense is bailing them out. At some point though, they can’t continue to give up that many yards and points each game.
LA decided to add yet another defensive stud. They traded for Dante Fowler from the Jacksonville Jaguars. Fowler was initially a first-round pick who missed his first season due to injury. The Rams have clearly made a great effort to create a line of elite playmakers.
Despite adding Fowler, they still gave up 50 points to the Chiefs. When will the Rams’ defense live up the hype? When will they play to their potential? Until they fix that side of the ball, they could be susceptible to being upset in the first round of the playoffs.