The Los Angeles Rams have no shortage of superstars on the defensive side of the ball. From cornerback Jalen Ramsey to defensive tackle Aaron Donald, the Rams boast talent across the board on defense.
However, while Ramsey and Donald undoubtedly get most of the media spotlight, Ramsey made his case last season to defensive coordinator Raheem Morris for another Rams defender to see the field more.
Ramsey saw something special in linebacker Ernest Jones, a third-round rookie, and implored Morris to get him more playing time, which he talked about on his Straight off the Press podcast.
“I remember last year, a couple of us, we were going to Rah like, ‘Hey, Ernest is gonna be the one. Ernest gotta play. You gotta put him in there. Ernest gotta play,’” Ramsey said.
Morris listened, and while Jones didn't become a starter until Week 8 of the season, his impact was immediate. Jones became an integral member of the Rams' defense in their Super Bowl run, recording seven tackles, two of which were for a loss and a sack in the Rams’ win.
Not only did Ramsey make an effort to get Jones more playing time, this offseason he went to bat for the signing of linebacker Bobby Wagner, knowing the impact he could have on the defense and Jones himself.
“I’m like, we gotta get Bobby Wagner because what Bobby Wagner is gonna do for this team and not only this team, but what Bobby Wagner is gonna do for Ernest Jones,” Ramsey said.
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Wagner, who joined Ramsey on this episode of his podcast, concurred with his assessment of Jones.
“I was really excited to play with Ernest,” Wagner said.
As the season goes on, Jones will continue to see increased snap counts alongside Wagner to help the Rams' defense gel. Once they do, though, this defense has the potential to be special, and Jones will be a big reason why.
You can find Connor Zimmerlee on Twitter @Connorjz98
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