Rams personnel report: the Sean McVay era

Eric D. Williams

Owners of one of the most dynamic offense in the NFL, Los Angeles Rams head coach and offensive mastermind Sean McVay hit a bump in the road in 2019.

An offense that led the NFL in points scored during the 2017 and 2018 seasons at 31.4 points per contest dropped to 24.6 points per game in 2019, as the Rams failed to reach the postseason after reaching the Super Bowl the previous year, missing the playoffs for the first time in three seasons.

You could point to a handful of issues for the Rams’ dip in production. Among them: A banged-up offensive line that struggled to consistently make running lanes for an aging Todd Gurley and a league that had caught up to the innovative McVay.

But every team’s offensive production starts at the quarterback position, and by most measures Jared Goff had a down year.

Goff finished with career-low 86.5 passer rating and threw a career-high 16 interceptions for a full, 16-game season.

And Goff struggled in situational football, completing just 58 percent of his passes for 11 touchdowns and six interceptions on third down, and finishing with a 79.7 passer rating in the fourth quarter.

While he scuffled last season, McVay still believes Goff’s issues are solvable.

“You look at the good and the bad and you say ‘How can we get better?’” McVay told reporters at the NFL Scouting Combine in February. “He’s a resilient guy. He’s got a great track record of being able to respond. I think he demonstrated that this past season and we’re very confident in Jared.”

The following numbers provide a deeper look at the Rams’ statistical leanings on both sides of the ball during McVay’s tenure with the team. The Rams play-action percentage of 31.7 percent is tops in the league over the last three years. Also, the Rams’ 7.26 yards per play on screens leads the NFL over the last three seasons.

PERSONNEL GROUPING (OFFENSE)
Source: Next Gen Stats

Total plays: 3,081 (excluding penalties)
01 (Zero RBs, 1 TE, 4 WRs) Pass – 18. Run – 39. Total: 57.
10 (One RB, Zero TE, 4 WRs) Pass – 18. Run 9. Total 27
11 (One RB, One TE, 3 WRs): Pass – 1,517. Run – 926. Total: 2,521
12 (One RB, Two TEs, 2 WRs): Pass -- 137. Run -- 276. Total: 413
13 (One RB, 3 TEs, 1 WR). Pass – 10. Run – 57. Total: 57
22 (2 RBs, 2 TEs, 1 WR) Pass – 0. Run – 6. Total: 6

PASSING BY PERSONNEL GROUPING
Jared Goff
01: 11 for-18 (61.1 percent) for 68 yards, 1 TD and zero INTs. Golf was sacked zero times and posted an 87.3 passer rating.
10: 16-for-226 (61.5 percent) for 190 yards, 3 TDs and zero INTs. Golf was sacked once and posted a 122.3 passer rating.
11: 945-for-1478 (63.9 percent) for 11,666 yards, 69 TDs and 32 INTs. Golf was sacked 79 times and posted a 94.8 passer rating.
12: 79-for-132 (59.8 percent) for 1,112 yards, 7 TDs and 2 INTs. Golf was sacked zero times and posted a 98.4 passer rating.
13: 3-10 (30.0 percent) for 94 yards, 2 TDs and 1 INT. Golf was sacked zero times and posted a 66.3 passer rating.

RUSHING BY PERSONNEL GROUPING
01: 39 for 129 yards (3.31 avg.) Long: 27. 1 TD
10: 9 for 14 yards (1.56 avg.) Long: 7. 1 TD
11: 926 for 4,447 yards (4.8 avg.) Long: 57. 49 TDs
12: 276 for 1,054 yards (3.82 avg.) Long: 46. 7 TDs
13: 57 for 40 yards (0.70 avg.) Long: 27. 2 TDs
22: 6 for minus-6 yards (minus-1.00 avg.). Long: minus-1. 0 TDs
Pre-snap motion: 43.5 percent
Play-action: 31.7 percent
Screens: 110 (102-110 for 799 yards, 6 TDS and 2 INTs).

PERSONNEL GROUPINGS (DEFENSE)
Total plays: 2,981 (excluding penalties)

Base (4 DBs): Pass – 543 (40.74%). Run – 790 (59.26%). Total – 1,333.
Nickel (5 DBs): Pass – 642 (70.09%). Run – 274 (29.91%). Total – 916.
Dime-plus (6 or more DBs): Pass – 591 (80.74%). Run – 141 (19.26%). Total – 732.

PASS RUSH
Total plays: 1,789

Rush 3 – 114 (6.37%). Sacks – 5. Yards per play – 6.57.
Rush 4 – 1,054 (58.92%). Sacks – 80. Yards per play – 6.84.
Rush 5 – 461 (25.77%). Sacks – 43. Yards per play – 8.11.
Rush 6+ -- 131 (7.32%). Sacks – 11. Yards per play – 7.72.

Here’s the snap counts for the Rams since 2017, when Sean McVay took over as head coach:

Source: Pro Football Reference

OFFENSE (Based on 3,101 snaps)

Quarterback – Jared Goff 2,954, Sean Mannion 135, Blake Bortles 11.

Running back – Todd Gurley 2,291, Malcolm Brown 471, C.J. Anderson 96, Darrell Henderson 88, John Kelly 52, Lance Dunbar 37, Justin Davis 11.

Wide receiver – Robert Woods 2,554, Cooper Kupp 1,962, Brandin Cooks 1,609, Josh Reynolds 1,303, Sammy Watkins 747, Tavon Austin 221, Pharoh Cooper 203, Mike Thomas 130, Khadarel Hodge 84, Nick Williams 20

Tight end – Tyler Higbee 2,121, Gerald Everett 1,067, Johnny Mundt 247, Derek Carrier 180.

Offensive line – Andrew Whitworth 2,915, Rob Havenstein 2,567, Austin Blythe 2,184, Rodger Saffold 1,933, John Sullivan 1,840, Jamon Brown 1.021, David Edwards 656, Brian Allen 568, Austin Corbett 513, Bobby Evans 451, Joe Noteboom 431, Jamil Demby 141, Darrell Williams 116, Cornelius Lucas 63, Aaron Neary 63, Coleman Shelton 21, Chandler Brewer 17.

DEFENSE (Based on 3,035 snaps)

Line – Aaron Donald 2,492, Michael Brockers 2,064, Ndamukong Suh 845, Morgan Fox 658, Robert Quinn 601, Ethan Westbrooks 493, Tanzel Smart 466, Sebastion Joseph-Day 461, Tyrunn Walker 288, John Franklin-Myers 283, Greg Gaines 178.

Linebacker – Cory Littleton 2,172, Samson Ebukam 1,531, Dante Fowler 1,233, Alec Ogletree 873, Conner Barwin 625, Matt Longacre 623, Clay Matthews 585, Troy Reeder 288, Bryce Hager 263, Ramik Wilson 150, obo Okoronkwo 109, Travin Howard 98, Dominique Easley 57, Carlos Thompson 50, Justin Lawler 31, Ejuan Price 20, Garrett Sickels 17, Natrez Patrick 16, Trevon Young 11, Cameron Lynch 10.

Secondary – John Johnson 1,967, Nickell Robey-Coleman 1,823, Lamarcus Joyner 1,514, Mark Barron 1,319, Marcus Peters 1,257, Troy Hill 1,179, Eric Weddle 982, Trumaine Johnson 884, Taylor Rapp 788, Marqui Christian 728, Aqib Talib 684, Jalen Ramsey 552, Kayvon Webster 520, Sam Shields 320, Cody Davis 265, Mauric Alexander 215, Blake Countess 214, Darious Williams 211, David Long 101, Kevin Peterson 94, Dominuque Hatfield 72, Donte Deayon 40, Isaiah Johnson 31, Nick Scott 15, Jake Gervase 13.

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