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Sat Mar 17, 2018 7:21 pm

1. Rams flipping the script. All the ideas to be aggressive and make changes and not rest on the 11-5 breakthrough of 2017 looked great on paper to Rams GM Les Snead. But then he actually had to make the walk out to the team’s practice fields with coach Sean McVay to tell linebacker Alec Ogletree, out doing routine conditioning work a few weeks back, that he was being dealt to the Giants. Separating from 2017 and actually going to 2018 got pretty real.

“You make that 20-yard walk, and it goes through your mind,” Snead said, driving home Wednesday night. “You drafted him, you met his family, you saw his fiancé become his wife, you saw them have their first kid, you saw him become a leader. So over here, you’re the GM trying to make moves to improve the architecture of the team. And you take that walk to communicate it to him, and it’s more about the human being.”

There’s a lot Snead, McVay and everyone in Los Angeles will remember fondly about 2017, but the team’s brass isn’t acting with any trepidation now, hard as it might be. The commitment was made after the season to sink resources into renovating the defense this offseason the way the Rams had with the offense and the coaching staff a year ago. And Snead knew exactly what coordinator Wade Phillips wanted—studs to man the perimeter of the secondary and his 3-4 front.

Work on the former started with a call from Chiefs GM Brett Veach on a Sunday in February, a call that Snead missed during a workout. When Snead called back on his ride home, Veach told Snead that Marcus Peters was available. A little over a week later, while Snead was on vacation in Hawaii, the deal was consummated. And that led to the Rams’ interest in Aqib Talib, who would provide a veteran bookend, and by then was known to be available. Of course, it was the $11 million Talib was due that necessitated the trade of Ogletree, who joined Robert Quinn and Trumaine Johnson as key elements of the 2017 defense on their way out. That, in turn, leaves work to be done in a front seven that’s fronted by reigning Defensive Player of the Year Aaron Donald. But the offseason’s not over yet, and as Snead sees the difficult steps the team’s taken this winter should prove significant in the fall.

“The defensive backfield in Wade’s scheme, those are very important positions,” Snead says. “We like our safeties, we like our corners. We have more to do. But we already have a good attacking offense. And we wanna get that defense suffocating.” Standing pat wasn’t going to get them there.

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Sat Mar 17, 2018 7:40 pm

Good read Bro...thanks for sharing

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Sun Mar 18, 2018 6:08 am

Thank you for posting the article. Some of the news stories are so full of ads that they have trouble loading and then pop ups get in the way. I appreciate the way you shared the story without the bs. Great share Bro.

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Sun Mar 18, 2018 6:28 am

Do you have a link for this?

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Mon Mar 19, 2018 7:25 pm

Thanks. Appreciate all of your posts.

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