Saturday, July 13, 2024

Rams say CB Jalen Ramsey is ‘supporting his guys’ after critical comments

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THOUSAND OAKS  — Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey doesn’t regularly speak to reporters after losses because his passion can be mistaken for anger.

Two days before he criticized the Rams’ offense for not closing the game with a first down in Sunday’s loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Ramsey had talked about his leadership style.

“It’s not that I get angry, it is all out of passion and love because I know what I want to be and I know what I want to be for this team because I am a captain of this team,” Ramsey said. “So yeah, hope that makes sense.”

It didn’t make sense to everyone, because Ramsey’s Sunday comments about the Rams’ sluggish offense were used for dissection on debate shows and generated click-bait headlines online.

Ramsey tried to make it clear that he wasn’t creating a divide in the locker room and it was more about holding teammates accountable during a rough stretch with the Rams losing four of their past five games and dropping to 3-5 on the season. Ramsey spoke with TV reporters and had one-on-one interviews with beat reporters, including this reporter, after the loss and challenged not only the offense, but the entire team with hopes of creating urgency for the reigning Super Bowl champions.

“We still all a team,” Ramsey said. “We going to support each other. We win together, we lose together. That’s a fact. We the Rams at the end of the day. But we gotta challenge them (the offense) and push them and convince them because they would be doing the same thing if we was out there really struggling. It’s not divided. We keep it real with each other.”

Those quotes, obviously, didn’t make the rounds because these comments from Ramsey took the spotlight: “Gotta have some dogs who are like, man, (expletive) all that, we are going to end this game right now. Good stop. We are going to end the game for y’all. We gotta play off each other in that sense. You know what I mean? That’s what I mean by we should not have had to go out there. It is what it is. It ain’t the first time that this has happened. This has happened multiple times this year, really.”

Ramsey has explained his brutally honest leadership, but he doesn’t need to with his teammates. They want him to be straightforward and center Brian Allen and star receiver Cooper Kupp agreed with Ramsey. They were just as critical of the offense.

Ramsey also challenged his defense and said he would do the same with special teams if they were struggling.

“We gotta correct this (on defense) and go,” Ramsey told this reporter in Tampa Bay. “We gotta have dogs. We gotta have people playing with passion and heart and ready to go get that (expletive). Wanting all the smoke. Like at the end of the game, put me on (Bucs wide receiver) Mike Evans if I get a chance. We gotta have people like that.

“Put that (expletive) in my hands, coach. That’s what we gotta get out of these people, because we got some dudes, we got some dogs who could do it, but it ain’t happening right now, so that’s what we gotta get.”

Rams star defensive lineman Aaron Donald said he appreciates Ramsey’s authenticity.

“I don’t think he went about it in a wrong way,” Donald said. “That’s just who Jalen is. He ain’t going to hold back. I think he’s in the right mindset to say certain things. I don’t think he mean it in a way to try to pull the team apart. If anything, he’s trying to bring guys together.”

Outsiders might not like Ramsey’s leadership style, but the Rams welcome it and maybe Ramsey’s remarks can help the team turn the season around.

“When Jalen speaks now it comes from a different place,” Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris said. “I didn’t know young Jalen, I didn’t work with young Jalen. Young Jalen probably just spoke from sheer thoughts and feelings, how he felt at that moment. Right now, he’s speaking in a good place. I think he’s talking to his guys. I think he’s supporting his guys.”


Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford traded his No. 9 practice jersey for a white hoodie and watched fellow quarterbacks John Wolford and Bryce Perkins lead the offense during practice Thursday.

Stafford is currently in the concussion protocol and it’s unknown whether he’ll play Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals at SoFi Stadium. Wolford would likely be the starter if Stafford isn’t cleared to play.

“Obviously, we’re going to miss Matthew if he’s not able to go,” Kupp said. “That’ll be tough. He’s such a great player for us. Me and ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ (Wolford), we go way back. We’ve had some time playing with each other. If that’s what it is, it’ll be fun to be out there with him. He’s got great command. He’s ran this offense for a while.”


Rams wide receiver Van Jefferson had been waiting since Super Bowl LVI in February to get a target in a game, but when the ball finally came his way, Jefferson dropped a downfield pass in the first quarter during last week’s loss to the Buccaneers.

Jefferson has started the past two games after missing the first six with a knee injury, but all Jefferson has to show for it is five targets, zero catches and one dropped pass.

“It was sickening, of course,” Jefferson said about the drop. “But that’s something I gotta have. That’s something I gotta make and I make that play 10 out of 10 times. I just gotta knock some of the rust off and get some of the reps I didn’t get coming off injury, but it’s all good, though. I’ll make that play.”

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