Get the linebacker unit settled
The Los Angeles Rams made a number of defensive upgrades this offseason, but it came at a bit of a cost as they had to make hard decisions at other spots, most notably linebacker, where Alec Ogletree and Robert Quinn were traded and Connor Barwin was not brought back as a free agent. Finding replacements for all three will be key in training camp, although they seem to have a leg up as Samson Ebukam and Matt Longacre are the leading candidates to replace Barwin and Quinn and Cory Littleton is the front-runner to take over for Ogletree. That said, all three will have to justify their positions and others will be given a long look to unseat them.
After losing long-ball threat Sammy Watkins in free agency, the Rams traded a 2018 first-round pick to New England to acquire Cooks, a highly productive wide receiver who flourished over his first four seasons with the Saints and Patriots. While Watkins and Goff never seemed to get on the same page last year after Watkins arrived late in training camp, Cooks and Goff worked extensively during the full offseason and looked comfortable together during OTAs and minicamp. Their bond will be further solidified during training camp, and that background work coupled with Cooks' experiences in high-powered offenses in New Orleans and New England, should result in him developing into a much more consistent weapon for Goff compared to Watkins.
Get Aaron Donald signed to a long-term extension
The Rams and their star defensive tackle and reigning NFL Defensive Player of the Year, Donald, have been dancing now for more than a year trying to come to terms on a long-term extension that reflects his elite status. He missed all of training camp last year and sat out all of the Rams' offseason activities this year in pursuit of a new contract. But thus far, to no avail. And while there are signs that the two sides might be inching closer to a deal, history has shown how fragile these things can be. So, until it actually happens, the Rams run the risk of another prolonged holdout and potentially damaging their relationship with a player they desperately want in the fold for the long term. And for a team with a legitimate eye on a Super Bowl run, that is no way to start a season.
Cory Littleton vs. Ramik Wilson at inside linebacker
Littleton will get the first crack at replacing Ogletree at inside linebacker and as the defensive play-caller, and rightfully so given the playmaking ability he continually flashed last year on special teams and in regular playing time. That said, Wilson, who the Rams acquired as a free agent this offseason, opened eyes during OTAs and minicamp opposite Littleton and in place of Mark Barron, who was held out of team activities for rehab purposes. With Barron entrenched at his spot, don't be surprised if Wilson pushes Littleton for playing time and/or the starting job across from Barron.