From the Podium: OC Kevin O'Connell talks QBs' development, creating competitive situations

Rams offensive coordinator Kevin O'Connell held a video conference with local media Saturday afternoon to discuss what he's worked on with Jared Goff and his potential backup John Wolford, among other important topics. Here are some highlights and key takeaways from that virtual conversation:

"We've worked a lot on his fundamentals."

  • Asked to describe Jared Goff, O'Connell called the Rams quarterback "incredibly talented" and went into detail on some of the things they've worked on, including Goff's base when he throws a football ("having a more athletic stance and posture through the sequence of the snap").
  • That the two of them are emphasizing the fundamentals early in training camp isn't a surprise – O'Connell in May mentioned it as one of the ways to help Goff improve upon his performance from the 2019 season.

"I don't worry too much about the experience with John, because I've seen him work already."

  • For the first time in his Rams tenure, Goff will go into the regular season without a veteran backup unless they sign someone prior to their Sept. 13 season opener against the Cowboys. However, O'Connell expressed confidence that John Wolford could capably fulfill that role when asked about Wolford specifically.
  • O'Connell's confidence in Wolford is understandable, because although Wolford hasn't thrown a pass in an NFL regular season game, he did spend the 2019 season on the Rams' practice squad and thus has familiarity with the offense.
  • O'Connell said Wolford will get "a lot" of opportunities to lead a huddle with "maybe some young players, maybe some guys that have been around here that are ready to compete."

"We got a great plan that (head) coach (Sean) McVay's laid out, which will really allow us to do everything we need to do from a competitive standpoint."

  • Because of the aforementioned unusual training camp and offseason, the evaluation process will look different for the Rams' coaching staff. With no preseason games to evaluate the back-end of the 80-man roster, the coaching staff will have to create competitive situations in practices and through a pair of scrimmages.
  • Besides the initial 53-man roster, an expanded practice squad from 12 to 16 players due to the new Collective Bargaining Agreement will also be impacting those assessments, "so there will be a lot of people fighting for a lot of jobs," according to O'Connell.
  • O'Connell said "the standard at which we practice and we play on a daily basis around here" will still create a competitive environment.

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