There are several reasons the Los Angeles Rams acquired Jalen Ramsey from the Jaguars in 2019, but one of his biggest strengths is his ability to match up with elite receivers on a weekly basis. We saw him do a lot of that last season, all but taking away DK Metcalf, DeAndre Hopkins, Terry McLaurin and several others when tasked with covering them.
Allen Robinson beat him for one catch – a 42-yarder – in the Rams’ win over the Bears last year, but other than that, Robinson wasn’t a huge factor in the game. The Rams hope that’ll be the case again on Sunday night, but their plan for Robinson is still to be determined.
Raheem Morris said on Thursday that Ramsey won’t follow Robinson around and shadow him throughout the game, trusting that Darious Williams and David Long Jr. will be able to handle the talented receiver in coverage when those matchups arise.
“You know, you’re talking about Allen Robinson, a premier receiver in this league for a long time. He does some things very, very well. He’s a great isolation player. He’s a great player in third down,” Morris said. “He has been a great player for a long time on two different teams now and having the luxury of being able to play – if you want to look at it that way – he’s one of those guys you have to prepare for and you know he’s going to move around. They’re going to try to get him the ball in his hands, particularly in the third-down situations, particularly in situations when you’ve got to have it.
“It’s nice to have a player like a Jalen Ramsey to be able to have a got-to-have-it player on defense that you can match up with him. Not to say that he would follow him around the whole game or anything like that, but there will be times that they’ll have matchups. There will be times where he’ll be with Darious Williams and there’ll be times he’ll be on D-Long. And I’ve got a lot of confidence in all those guys holding up their end of the bargain.”
Morris wasn’t going to give away the Rams’ game plan anyway, but it would be foolish of them not to use Ramsey on Robinson for most of the game. The Bears’ other receivers are Darnell Mooney, Marquise Goodwin, Breshad Perriman and Damiere Byrd.
That’s not exactly the most threatening group of wideouts, though Mooney is an up-and-coming player for Chicago.
If the Rams can essentially take Robinson away, Andy Dalton will be left with an underwhelming group of receiving targets. Goodwin and Mooney can make plays down the field, but they aren’t players Williams can’t handle in coverage.
As Morris said, Robinson will be a go-to player on third down and in obvious passing situations. That’s when it’ll be paramount for Ramsey to be lined up across from him – or at least on his side of the field if the Rams are in zone. They can’t let Robinson beat them, especially knowing they have the ultimate eraser in Ramsey.