When Robert Woods was introduced to local media back in March, he made a point of saying he wanted to get with quarterback Jared Goff and start working as soon as possible. There's more to be done, but receiver and quarterback appear to be establishing a solid chemistry through the offseason program.
"He's been great," Goff said on Monday. "He's been more than I could have really expected, honestly."
"We've been working," Woods said. "Pretty much that first week, we were throwing at Westlake High, a couple of the colleges around here. But just trying to get our timing down early so our first impression with [head coach Sean] McVay and [offensive coordinator] Matt LaFleur was a good one."
That has been the case, with McVay praising the work ethic Woods has displayed on and off the field. But it's Woods' versatility that has highlighted his value to the club so far.
"He's a guy that kind of plays a lot different spots for us, competes well in both the run and the pass — kind of what we had liked about him when we had seen him on tape in Buffalo and going back to even when he was a great player at USC," McVay said. "He's been really good so far, one of those guys that you enjoy coaching just because the way that he goes about his work every single day."
"His work ethic — you can tell how much it means to him and how bad he wants it. He's just a competitor," Goff said.
After four seasons with the Bills compiling 203 receptions for 2,451 yards and 12 touchdowns, Woods said he feels he's had a speedy transition to his new club. With a new coaching staff, he's just like the rest of the Rams receiving corps in that it's a new system for everyone.
"I mean, everybody's getting used to the new offense, everybody's installing the same thing, so it's not like I'm far behind or anything," Woods said. "But just coming out here and trying to get better on the field. We're trying to build the offense as fast as we can. We have a lot of young weapons, young players, people who will contribute early."
At age 22, Goff counts as one of those young players. And part of the benefit of Woods signing a five-year contract is that he and Goff have a chance to establish a long-term partnership.
That stands in contrast to what Woods has dealt with in the past, working with multiple quarterbacks in Buffalo.
"I've worked with a lot of different guys early on — E.J. Manuel, Tyrod [Taylor], those are the quarterbacks who were there most often, most consistently," Woods said. "But now, working with Goff, a young quarterback, seeing him communicate in the meeting rooms…the biggest thing — we're talking so much that we're seeing it apply on the field.
"We've got years and years to come, years to work on it," Woods added. "But just want to come out and start early — first year, no need to wait. Both early and young, no need to wait, just start now."
So far, both Woods and Goff have been impressed with the other.
"He wants to be the best he can be every day and you can tell that," Goff said. "It's really exciting for me to have a guy like that — multiple guys like that, but him in particular."
"Work ethic, arm, and accuracy," Woods said, listing Goff's standout traits. "You see him coming out here, always working, always first to answer the questions in the meeting rooms. Just coming out here when we work, he listens."
As McVay often points out, clear and open communication is key. Woods pointed out one play that previously fell incomplete that the pair got right on Monday as an example of how they're growing together.
"The same pass we completed today, we had the same look a few weeks ago. And this time, he threw it and it was a perfect pass," Woods said, "He just puts the ball in perfect position for the receivers to make plays."
Check out photos from the Los Angeles Rams' second day of OTAs. Photos by Jeff Lewis.