In spite of their struggles throughout the season, the Los Angeles Rams had some standout performers in 2022.
In what will be remembered as a forgettable season, the Los Angeles Rams finished 5-12 in 2022. The Rams failed to qualify for the postseason, due largely in part to enduring a rash of injuries to some of the team’s most prominent players.
While a disappointing end to their Super Bowl LVI championship defense may have soured L.A.’s prognosis for the 2023 NFL season, a handful of standout performers helped to add a bit of dignity to an otherwise dismal showing.
Accordingly, three Rams were selected by Pro Football Focus to their annual list of top 101 NFL players for their performance in 2022: linebacker Bobby Wagner, cornerback Jalen Ramsey and defensive end Aaron Donald.
30. BOBBY WAGNER, LOS ANGELES RAMS
“On opening night, Wagner looked like he may be well into his decline in his Rams debut. But for the rest of the season, he bounced back to show that he’s still an elite linebacker, tallying 50 defensive stops and missing just four of his 137 tackle attempts on the season.”
In a season riddled with injury on both sides of the ball, Wagner was perhaps L.A.’s most durable player. The 32-year old played in all 17 games, finishing with 140 total tackles, two interceptions, six sacks, five passes-defensed and one blocked kick. Despite a stellar season, the Rams and Wagner have parted ways as a cost-cutting measure. As Wagner now heads to the open market, the Rams will undoubtedly miss his reliability and versatility on the field.
37. JALEN RAMSEY, LOS ANGELES RAMS
Ramsey was good as a cover corner from his inside alignment for the Rams, but he was otherworldly against the run, where his 91.8 PFF grade was the best in the league. Ramsey spent a lot of time lined up in the box or in the slot, putting him closer to the action than he used to be as a boundary corner.
Despite a stellar showing in 2022, Ramsey finds himself at the center of several trade rumors. Still, L.A.’s secondary had the ability to force turnovers in the passing game, thanks largely in part to Ramsey’s shutdown style. The 28-year-old logged 88 total tackles, 18 passes defensed and four interceptions, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery in 2022. While it remains unclear as to whether Ramsey is moved by the Rams this offseason, he will continue to be among the elite players at the position, no matter which uniform he wears in 2023.
48. AARON DONALD, LOS ANGELES RAMS
This year, Donald suffered the first significant injury of his NFL career, but in a little more than 600 snaps, he was still one of the league’s most destructive players. Donald posted 40 pressures and 33 defensive stops in a fraction of the snaps that it took other dominant players.
In addition to being one of the league’s most fearsome defenders, Donald has been remarkably durable throughout his nine-year pro career. The seven-time All-Pro has not missed a game since 2017. Unfortunately, a high ankle sprain suffered in late November limited him to playing in only 11 games for Los Angeles this season. Still, the 31-year-led finished the season with 49 total tackles (10, for loss), 11 quarterback hits, five sacks and two passes defensed. Though Donald continuously flirts with retirement, the prevailing narrative surrounding him is that he will be back in Los Angeles for the upcoming season.
Follow Mike D’Abate on Twitter @mdabateNFL.
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