(News4usonline) – The Los Angeles Rams got a boatload of players from the 2023 NFL Draft. Judging from the players they selected, it’s clear that the Rams drafted for need. It also appears that head coach Sean McVay and general manager Les Snead went through a painstaking process of adding players to the team roster that will both compete and contribute.
The Rams added a total of 14 players to their team by way of the draft. The sheer number of players selected is expected to help improve a team that went 5-12 last season.
“We got a lot better in terms of the depth of our football team,” McVay stated. “Now how these guys come in and earn their opportunities, what that looks like, but there’s a handful of these guys that are going to come in and have legitimate chances to be starters on opening day, but that’s all going to be earned.
“We’ve got some guys that are in-house that we expect to take steps in the right direction, especially a handful of those guys that are going into their second year that got their feet a little bit wet as a result of the amount of injuries. And so when you look at it from a positive lens, I think that’ll be a good thing, but we’re a much more competitive football team by the nature of these 14 players.”
The Rams added three players to their roster on Day 2 of the draft. Their fourth pick on Day 3, the Rams brought both intrigue and excitement to their fan base when they made former Georgia Bulldogs quarterback Stetson Bennett the 128th overall draft pick (fourth round).
“People take for granted that this guy is just a really good football player,” McVay said. “Because of the background and the way that he became the starter at Georgia is a little bit unconventional and it wasn’t the five-star route, but I think it minimized the athleticism, the ability to create off-schedule. He’s a natural thrower of the football. He can play with great anticipation, throws the ball with accuracy, plays within the timing.”
It was a great move by McVay and Snead to pick up Bennett on several fronts.
First, the Rams sorely needed a capable backup to starter Matthew Stafford. And they needed a quarterback that Stafford would be able to groom to take over once his watch as the team’s starting quarterback is over. Stafford led the Rams to a win in Super Bowl LVI. The veteran quarterback had his 2022 season cut short due to a neck contusion. He’s back and ready to go.
However, with Bryce Perkins and John Wolford both not around, McVay and Snead had to get someone else in the quarterback room. After drafting an offensive lineman with the 36th pick (TCU guard Steve Avila), picking up an edge rusher (Tennessee outside linebacker Byron Young) with the 77th pick, and grabbing a defensive lineman (Wake Forest’s Kobie Turner) with the 89th selection, the Rams went after Stafford’s heir apparent.
There’s not a whole lot not to like about Bennett. He’s mobile-friendly. He has good pocket awareness. He throws a pretty decent ball. And by the way, he’s also a two-time national champion.
So he knows how to win. Bennett sounds like the perfect fit for McVay’s offense. During the 2023 College Football Playoff National Championship game played at SoFi Stadium, Bennett led the Bulldogs to a 65-7 crushing win over TCU, wrapping up a successful collegiate career.
If you’re looking for numbers, Bennett has them. In his two years as a full-time starter, Bennett threw for a combined 6,989 yards and 56 touchdowns. During his senior campaign, Bennett passed for 4,27 yards and 27 touchdowns while completing 68 percent of his passes.
The numbers thing is cool, but an added benefit for Bennett is the fact he’ll be groomed by Stafford, a Georgia alum himself. McVay is a great opportunity for Bennett.
“I think what a great opportunity for him to come in and learn from a perennial All-Pro, a great football player who’s been doing it at a high level,” quipped McVay. “And it’s not exclusive to just the great things you see (QB) Matthew (Stafford) do on Sundays, but the level of preparation and professionalism that exists throughout the course of the week. His rhythm and routine, the way that he just seamlessly, naturally interacts with guys. I think there’ll be a lot of good things that Stetson will be able to see what it looks like.”
Dennis has covered and written about politics, crime, social justice, sports, and entertainment. Dennis currently covers the NFL, MLB, NBA, NCAA, and Olympic sports. Dennis is the editor of News4usonline.com and serves as the publisher of the Compton Bulletin newspaper. He earned a journalism degree from Howard University.