The Los Angeles Rams had something of a rarity during Monday night’s loss to the Cincinnati Bengals. Kyren Williams, selected in the fifth round of the 2022 NFL Draft by general manager Les Snead, was on the field for 100% of the team’s offensive snaps. The Rams have been known for their running back by committee approach over the past few seasons, making this especially rare.
The Rams running back depth chart also includes Ronnie Rivers and Zach Evans, but the two have played a small role in the offense this season with Williams’ emergence. Trading Cam Akers to the Minnesota Vikings last week could have opened the door for more playing time to Rivers and Evans, but Williams instead played every single offensive snap.
Following the loss, Snead discussed the running back room and his hope that Rivers and Evans will become more involved as the season goes along in order to keep Williams fresh, via The Coach McVay Show:
“I think going into the game, I know Sean and his staff wanted to get some of the other runners involved,” Snead said. “I’m pretty sure the way the game went, we didn’t play as many snaps on offense. Had a few drives in there where you’re three-and-out or you’re four and a turnover. Point being, the rhythm of the game kept us from rotating the backs, but I know that Sean and his staff – the objective is not to have Kyren play every Rams offensive snap and we definitely know he can’t make it… There’s a tendency not to want him off the field, but you’re well aware he’s going to have to come off. And we also like what some of the other backs are doing and looking forward to seeing Ronnie Rivers carry the ball some, as well, because he’s done some nice things from OTAs to now.”
Snead places no blame on anyone for the way things went against the Bengals. Sometimes, a game script flips and doesn’t allow for what was initially planned. But based on Snead’s commentary, it wouldn’t be surprising to see a more concerted effort to get the other backs involved in Week 4 against the Indianapolis Colts.
Rivers figures to see the bulk of the back-up carries, but the Rams have never shied away from using three running backs in a game plan.
Stafford discusses red zone miscues
Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford believes that the Rams cost themselves the game against the Bengals with some early miscues in the red zone, when they had to settle for two field goals from within the 11-yard line.
“I think the biggest thing for us tonight was missed opportunities early in the game in the red zone,” quarterback Matthew Stafford said. “If we can come away with some sevens there it’s probably a little bit of a different game later on.”