Logan Ryan praises Cooper Kupp, explains why he’s the key to the Rams’ offense
After an injury-riddled season, the Los Angeles Rams are going to get a bunch of key players back for the 2023 campaign. Aaron Donald, Matthew Stafford and Cooper Kupp will all be returning from injuries that caused them to miss the end of last season, and all three are critical to the team’s success this year.
But if you were to ask NFL defensive back Logan Ryan, he would say Kupp is the key to the Rams offense, not Stafford. He was on “Good Morning Football” this week and heaped praise on the Rams receiver, explaining what makes him so good and such an important part of Los Angeles’ operation.
He thinks with Kupp coming back, the Rams will recapture at least a little bit of their 2021 “fear factor.”
“I think they do somewhat and that’s gonna be because the guy’s back, and that’s not Matthew Stafford. That’s Cooper Kupp,” Ryan said. “In 2021, Cooper Kupp is No. 1 in receptions, No. 1 in receiving yards, No. 1 in receiving TDs, No. 1 in catching the game-winning touchdown in the Super Bowl. So I feel this guy is a security blanket. He and Matt Stafford, they’re peanut butter and jelly, and he’s gonna find him. He can get open in zone coverages, he’s beaten man-to-man. The whole defensive game plan is to stop Cooper Kupp. I think he’s tough after the catch, and he’s one of the most willing blockers out there in football. So he doesn’t take a play off. He powers their running game because of how he blocks, he powers their passing game. And playing against him, our whole game plan – he kept our defensive coordinator up – was, ‘How do we slow down Cooper Kupp?’ And if we don’t slow him down, it’s going to be a long day. I think he opens everything for McVay, he opens up Van Jefferson, he opens up the running game. Cooper Kupp is the key to the LA Rams.”
"The whole defensive game plan is to stop Cooper Kupp. I think he's tough after the catch, and he's one of the most willing blockers out there in football so he doesn't take a play off. He powers their running game because of how he blocks…"
– @RealLoganRyan pic.twitter.com/9BQoipneST
— Good Morning Football (@gmfb) May 9, 2023
Kupp led the NFL in receptions, receiving yards and touchdown catches in 2021, winning the receiving triple crown. He was also named Offensive Player of the Year and claimed Super Bowl MVP honors, putting together one of the best seasons ever by a wide receiver.
He was on a terrific pace last season before getting hurt, too. Excluding his three-catch, minus-1-yard game against the Cardinals when he injured his ankle, Kupp had 72 catches for 813 yards and six touchdowns in just eight games, putting him on pace for more than 140 catches and 1,600 yards.
With Kupp and Stafford back to full health, they could be in for another massive season together in 2023. Their chemistry together is off the charts, and Kupp’s feel for defenders makes him so tough to cover.
“It’s really tough because you can’t take away everything,” Ryan said. “So if he knows what your leverage is, he knows where you’re trying to take him away, he just goes the other way. He has so much freedom in their offense to find space and I think he’s great at finding space.”
He even compared Stafford and Kupp to a pick-and-roll play with James Harden and Joel Embiid.
“I look at it like an NBA pick and roll with Embiid and Harden,” Ryan added. “They both know how to play off each other. It’s hard to stop. It’s a two-man game and I think that’s what Kupp and Stafford are doing.”
Ryan isn’t worried about Kupp’s supposed lack of speed after he ran a 4.62 in the 40-yard dash at the combine. He still finds ways to make plays and get open despite not being the fastest player out there.
“He’s not a track star but you know what? When you’re in great shape, you run 4.6 every play,” Ryan said. “I know 4.3 and 4.4 guys that aren’t in great shape and they’re running 4.8, 4.9 out there because they’re tired. Cooper Kupp is elite shape, he takes care of his body, he knows the game and it’s easy for him.”
Suffice to say, Ryan is a big fan of Kupp and always finds it difficult to take him away in the Rams offense.
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