Los Angeles Rams Power Ranking Tumbles After Aaron Donald’s Retirement, Yet Silver Lining Exist

Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Losing the greatest defensive player of all time certainly wasn’t going to help the Los Angeles Rams in the eye of the national media. Now in the post-free agency/ way-too-early power rankings, they are putting ink behind just how detrimental Aaron Donald‘s retirement was to the team.

Both NFL.com and Sharp Football Analysis have the Rams dropping five spots to 16th and 17th respectively. Both cite the loss of Donald as the primary reason for the dramatic dip. As Raymond Summerlin of Sharp Football puts it,

“There are some quality defensive line prospects the Rams can target in the draft, but there is no replacing Donald, and the knock-on effect on some of those promising now sophomores will be interesting.”

ESPN had a far less dramatic drop, going from 12th to 15th. Although Rams beat reporter, Sarah Barshop focused on the positive addition of backup quarterback, Jimmy Garoppolo, rather than the loss of Donald

Other Views of the Los Angeles Rams Free Agency

NFL: Detroit Lions at Kansas City Chiefs
Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Opinions of analysts and journalists are certainly credible ways to judge a team, there are other ways to skin the catfish.

Las Vegas odds maker’s initial odds for the Rams making the Super Bowl was +3000. Post-free agency there has been some deviation, but nothing significant. Draft Kings moved them to +3500 and Fan Duel to +3200. Sharp Football hasn’t moved off +3000. And BetOnline increased their chances of winning the Super Bowl to +2500.

Los Angeles Rams Opening Odds For Super Bowl 59 Contemptably Low

The likely reason for the optimism (muted optimism, but optimism nonetheless) is the Rams additions to their offense. They secured WR Demarcus Robinson for another year and they beefed up their blocking by re-signing right guard Kevin Dotson and adding left guard Jonah Jackson and blocking tight end Colby Parkinson.

This to a team that in 2023 had the league’s 6th-highest rushing success rate. According to PFF, the Rams added the 5th most Wins Above Replacement in the league on offense, more specifically, to their blocking ability on offense.

While there are serious questions about the pass rush, depth in the secondary, and on special teams, the Ram’s offense will likely pur like a well-oiled machine.

Syndication: Arizona Republic
Los Angeles Rams RB Kyren Williams: Rob Schumacher/The Republic / USA TODAY NETWORK Credit: Rob Schumacher/The Republic / USA TODAY NETWORK