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Bigger, Faster, Stronger: Saints’ have advantage vs Rams thanks to changes Payton made after return in 13’.

The Los Angeles Rams have a team full of “exceptions” and that bodes well for New Orleans

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Baltimore Ravens Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

It’s been said that the Rams are like a younger version of the Saints, specifically they borrow from the 06-09 iterations of the team.

From the 09’ team the dynamic between Wade Phillips and Sean McVay is very easily comparable to that of Sean Payton and Gregg Williams in that all are aggressive coaches.

Well minus the drama

Offensively they are lead by a young gun slinger in Jared Goff who has a knack for getting the ball to the open receivers that McVay schemes up within his system, and is adept at pushing the ball downfield on the called shot plays.

Heck, one Todd Gurley equals the combination of a healthy 06’ Deuce McCallister and Reggie Bush.

Defensively they are lead by a talented defensive line that is headlined by star defensive tackle Aaron Donald who wrecks games in a way that former Saints 1st round pick Sedrick Ellis was meant to.

I almost feel like Blades tagline fits here “All of their strengths, but none of their weaknesses”.

Keyword there is ALMOST

Inherently they actually suffer from a few of the Same issues New Orleans suffered through during that time and the biggest issue is their lack of size, and simply put - big people beat up little people.

In the midst of his bounty gate suspension Sean would have a conversation with mentor Bill Parcells and return with a bigger, faster, stronger mantra as it pertained to drafting and free agent acquisitions.

Every now and again New Orleans will make an exception(Brandin Cooks and Sheldon Rankins), but it’s rare because, as Parcells often said, if you let a few in, pretty soon you’ll have a team full of them. In order for an “exception” to win them over he must have an overwhelming trait available that compensates for what would be considered short comings (no pun intended).

In respects to the aforementioned, it would be speed for Cooks, and intelligence/character for Rankins and as it pertains to the former he is now the feature wide receiver on a Los Angelas Rams team who’s cup runneth over with exceptions.

He joins Robert Woods (both under 200 lbs) as undersized speed threats on the offensive side of the ball. Conversely, New Orleans doesn’t have a corner on the roster under 6’0 195 lbs with the exception of Crawley.

That same problem also manifest on the defensive side of the ball where both Rams’ inside line backers Mark Barron (a former safety) and Corey Littleton barely tip the scales at 230 lbs. Aaron Donald, while amazing, is only 290 lbs (small for a defensive tackle) and their free safety Lemarcus Joyner is 5’8 191.

I’ll say it again, big people beat up little people.

Payton’s teams of old were considered finesse for a reason and while a lot of it had to do with style of play there was a tiny singe of it that had to do with how the team was built. They just weren’t physically imposing to go along with not really playing a physical brand of football.

It was those teams that would go against NFC North or AFC North squads like the Bears and Ravens and get squashed because stylistically they weren’t great matches.

Guess what brand of ball the Rams play?

Am I saying it’s a significant advantage? No...because there are guys like Cooks (who burned Rams for 2 TD’s in 2016), Barry Sanders, Darren Sproles, Sam Mills, and Tyrann Mathieu that make you look at and value smaller players a differently

Still, David triumphing over Goliath is such a miraculous tale simply because the feat doesn’t happen very much.