Rams Week 1 snap counts: Michel plays 3 snaps, Burgess gets zero

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Considering the Rams don’t play their starters in the preseason, it’s difficult to predict who will play how much in Week 1 of any given year. We had a good idea of who the starters would be and which players would be the primary backups, but in their 34-14 win over the Bears, we learned who Sean McVay wants on the field the majority of the time.

Looking at the snap counts from Sunday’s victory, the Rams didn’t use a very deep rotation on either side of the ball. Only 13 players played more than four snaps on offense, while 17 players on defense were out there for at least 10 snaps.

Here’s a breakdown of the Rams’ snap counts in Week 1, starting with the offense.

Offense

Seven players were on the field for every single snap, and six of them weren’t the least bit surprising. All five starting offensive linemen played 100% of the snaps, as did Matthew Stafford. Tyler Higbee did, too, which is the first time in his career that he played every snap on offense. Johnny Mundt played 15 snaps as the No. 2 tight end, which shows the Rams were in 11 personnel for most of the game. Darrell Henderson Jr. is clearly the top running back as of now, playing 94% of the snaps compared to only 6% for Sony Michel. It’s likely that Michel is still getting up to speed with his new team and his role should grow as time goes on, but Henderson has a firm grasp on the RB1 spot for now. Cooper Kupp led the way at wide receiver with 49 snaps played, or 94%. Robert Woods was on the field 77% of the time, followed by Van Jefferson (69%). Jefferson looks like the No. 3 receiver behind Woods and Kupp, slotting in ahead of DeSean Jackson as of now. Jackson played just 14 snaps in his Rams debut. Tutu Atwell was a non-factor, playing only two snaps in his first NFL game.

Defense

There was more subbing on defense than there was on the offensive side of the ball, but even still, it didn’t go as deep as initially expected. Taylor Rapp played every snap in his starting role, as did defensive signal caller Jordan Fuller. Terrell Burgess didn’t play a single snap on defense, however, which was surprising. Nick Scott was the third safety, playing 10 defensive snaps. At cornerback, Jalen Ramsey and Darious Williams were on the field for every play. Williams didn’t play 100% of the defensive snaps in a single game last season, so it’s unlikely he’s going to come off the field much at all this year. David Long Jr. was the nickel corner and played 39 snaps, missing time due to cramping. Robert Rochell filled in with 27 snaps, a healthy amount for the rookie corner. Kenny Young played every snap, which is 24% more than he played in a single other game in his NFL career. The Rams were in nickel and dime packages for the majority of the game, as evidenced by Troy Reeder only getting 19 snaps (28%). Ernest Jones and Travin Howard only played on special teams. Leonard Floyd was quiet against the Bears in his 57 snaps (83%) played, only recording three assisted tackles. Justin Hollins had two sacks and eight tackles in his 51 snaps as the No. 2 edge rusher opposite Floyd. Terrell Lewis (17 snaps) and Justin Lawler (6 snaps) were the only other outside linebackers to get on the field, as Chris Garrett remained on the sideline despite being active. Aaron Donald led the way with 66 snaps (96%) on the defensive line, followed by Sebastian Joseph-Day (52 snaps) and A’Shawn Robinson (23 snaps). They were the three starters, but Robinson and Joseph-Day were subbed out for Greg Gaines (25 snaps), Jonah Williams (13 snaps) and Michael Hoecht (9 snaps) during the game. Perhaps Robinson is still getting back to full health after his minor knee procedure, limiting his snaps on Sunday.

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