THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. — Los Angeles Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford was requested how he and large receiver Cooper Kupp might probably high their success from final season.
Stafford joked, “You possibly can’t sit there and go, ‘Effectively, the one factor to do now could be go for two,500 yards and I am going to throw for 7,000. That is unrealistic.”
However offensive coordinator Liam Coen is aware of one of many Rams’ offseason strikes couldn’t solely make this offense extra harmful, however assist Kupp as nicely. Whereas Kupp and now-Rams large receiver Allen Robinson II have been utilized in another way of their careers, each receivers are so versatile, Coen stated, the Rams can use variations of formations to maneuver each round to totally different spots and create favorable matchups.
“Getting Cooper [Kupp] on a nickel, getting Allen [Robinson] on a backer after which switching these guys,” Coen stated. “And vice versa. We predict it will likely be troublesome to defend and it was clearly troublesome to defend [Kupp] over the previous few years and having the form of guys that we had. However provided that range that Allen brings to us, I positively assume that it’s going to current some challenges to the protection.”
Coen stated Robinson’s route tree is “extraordinarily expanded from most likely years in the past, or possibly what we have had our different receivers do.”
“I imply, he can run quite a lot of routes that Cooper can, you already know — a few of these choice routes and selection routes and issues that we requested Cooper to do — as a result of he simply has an unbelievable capability to play beneath himself,” Coen stated.
Kupp had the most effective seasons a large receiver in historical past — successful the receiving “triple crown” with 145 receptions for 1,947 yards and 16 touchdowns — and did so working 58% of his routes out of the slot, with Robert Woods or Odell Beckham Jr. taking part in reverse Van Jefferson on the skin. Nonetheless, Kupp was capable of stretch seams and break via for giant performs out of a place that is not recognized for them.
Final season with the Chicago Bears, 37.4% of the routes Robinson ran have been within the slot. If the Rams are assured Robinson might take up among the duty on the within, it might give Kupp extra room to sometimes function on the skin. With out Woods or Beckham — at the very least to begin the season — there will likely be a necessity for one more vertical menace reverse Jefferson.
Whereas Robinson is able to doing that himself — he had 102 receptions for 1,250 yards and 6 touchdowns in 2020 earlier than struggling via an illness- and injury-plagued 2021 — maybe Coen and coach Sean McVay get inventive, with Robinson and Kupp splitting that duty greater than anticipated.
“He is a type of greater receivers that has physique management of a smaller man,” McVay stated. “I’ve stated this earlier than, I guess you he is actually good whenever you play pickup basketball as a result of he can get parallel, he can double-up, he has nice physique management. He has nice ball abilities.”
Robinson, who signed a three-year, $46 million contract with Los Angeles this offseason, spent the final 4 seasons with the Bears after breaking in with the Jacksonville Jaguars. The veteran receiver stated he spent the spring exercises transferring round and “studying the offense from many alternative spots on the sector.”
“Now,” Robinson stated throughout OTAs, “it is nearly constructing chemistry and studying extra so of the nuances of issues.”
Stafford did not throw throughout the offseason program as he recovers from a proper elbow harm. Nonetheless, the quarterback stated, one profit to not with the ability to take part in each drill is he is had extra time to speak to Robinson on the sidelines and between performs.
“I have been very, very impressed along with his capability to understand our offense, his function in our offense,” Stafford stated. “His understanding, even when he would possibly miss one thing or mess one thing up, the reason being so sound on why he did one thing — he heard this and thought that, and I am like, ‘That is an important thought.’ It is actually productive development for him in our offense.”
Coen stated apart from Robinson’s versatility, the receiver’s “unbelievable capability to double you up on the level of assault” stood out to him this spring.
“He actually can work edges on you,” Coen stated. “Lean and press away from you on the high of the routes. He has actually good particulars, each within the launch recreation and on the high of the routes.”
Robinson stated he has already gotten quite a lot of assist from Kupp, saying the pair is “at all times speaking via these various things and actually being very particular.” Final season, the Rams ranked seventh within the NFL in Soccer Outsiders’ passing DVOA. And though the Rams traded Woods and have not re-signed Beckham — at the very least not but — Kupp stated it has been “nice” to work with Robinson.
“It has been a lot enjoyable to have the ability to collaborate with him,” Kupp stated. “There’s quite a lot of potential for us to have the ability to do some actually particular issues, however we have now to stack the blocks day-by-day and construct into that.”