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Repeating as Super Bowl champions won’t be easy for the Los Angeles Rams to do. It never is for the team that won it all the previous season. But heading into the regular season, expectations remain high for Sean McVay’s team.
They have some of the best Super Bowl odds in the NFL and even though they lost the likes of Von Miller, Darious Williams and Austin Corbett, they added Bobby Wagner and Allen Robinson. It’s a (slightly) new-look team in some respects, but still one of the best in football.
Nate Davis of USA TODAY Sports released his preseason power rankings and sitting at No. 1 are the Rams.
Rams (1): Reigning champs have several key departures and newcomers, WR Odell Beckham Jr. currently somewhere in between. But factoring a guy like LB Bobby Wagner into the equation certainly won’t hinder the quest of a team trying to become the first in 18 years to successfully defend a Super Bowl crown.
The Bills moved up from No. 3 to 2, and they’ll be the Rams’ Week 1 opponent. The Bengals are now third, followed by the Packers and Chiefs in the top five.
You have to scroll a bit further down to find another NFC West team. The Rams are the only ones in the top 10, though the 49ers moved up from 14th to 11th as the second-best team in the West. The Cardinals remain No. 22 and the Seahawks slipped three spots to No. 25.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize how difficult the Rams’ schedule will be this season. They’ll face five of the top-eight teams in these rankings and nine of the top 15 teams. If they’re going to win the NFC West again, it’s going to require a bunch of tough victories against quality teams.