THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – For an idea of how valuable cornerback Darious Williams is to the Rams' secondary, consider that head coach Sean McVay and defensive coordinator Raheem Morris have both said his positional flexibility plays a critical role in how fellow cornerback Jalen Ramsey is deployed.
In other words, Williams is difficult to replace, and won't be by just one player while he's on injured reserve with an ankle injury. According to Morris, it will take a committee approach as the Rams prepare to be without Williams for the next three weeks starting this Sunday against the Giants (10 a.m. pacific time, FOX).
"Not to steal a (Patriots Head Coach Bill) Belichick (line), but he's a wonderful football player and he's a dream to coach," Morris said of Williams. "He's one of those guys that you can put all over the field. He's one of those guys that provides that versatility for not just AD (DL Aaron Donald) but everybody around him, some of the safety's, some of the guys that he's able to communicate with and how he moves about his business, how he goes about his process during the week. He really enables some of the other guys to get better and better as they go. And it's very difficult, but it's something that we're all built for, and it's something that this team is built for."
Initially, the Rams chose to keep rookie Robert Rochell on the outside, with third-year cornerback David Long stationed inside after Williams exited last week's game against the Seahawks with an ankle injury.
Morris and Ramsey wouldn't go into detail about what exactly the secondary would look like, understandable as not to tip off the Giants well in advance of kickoff, but Morris mentioned needing Rochell and Long, as well as safety Terrell Burgess (who has positional versatility) potentially stepping up into a bigger role after being used almost exclusively on special teams through the first five games. Donald mentioned Donte' Deayon potentially getting a bigger role as well.
No matter what the group looks like, Ramsey and Morris have full confidence in the players who will be asked to step up.
"We got people in place ready to step up, and I think they will," Morris said.
"I mean, I've been around the guys, you know what I mean?" Ramsey said. "I've been around the guys. I done worked with them. (I) grind with them, seeing them put the work in, challenged them myself, had them challenge me, and that's it. So, I'm confident going into the game."