4-Time Pro Bowl WR a Potential Emergency Fit for Depleted Rams

Sean McVay

Getty Sean McVay during the fourth quarter of the Rams' November 13, 2022 home game.

Let’s be honest here: The 3-6 Los Angeles Rams need emergency help.

An injury pileup that began on the offensive line then added quarterback Matthew Stafford last week snatched its latest, and certainly biggest, name to the injured reserve list on Tuesday, November 15: Cooper Kupp.

Now, the defending Super Bowl champions are facing the inevitability of not having the man who makes this offense explosive for the next four games, per ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter…and possibly beyond that due to a high ankle sprain and surgery required.

Hate to sound like the Rams have to send out a distress signal. But it sure looks that way.

And Rams fans clinging to the hope that Odell Beckham Jr. can come back to the “Rams House” may have to let that go like a balloon in their hand. Beckham, per Schefter on Saturday, November 12, has four NFL contenders listed as potential suitors and not one of them were the Rams — signaling that OBJ is heading east or north of L.A.

But, while Beckham is considered the popular choice for teams looking to add a last-minute spark to their offense, turns out there’s one other multiple Pro Bowler still out there on the free agent market who fits the emergency help mold for this current Rams predicament.

Rams Could Look to 4-Time Pro Bowler

The other prominent name still out there? Four-time Pro Bowl receiver T.Y. Hilton.

Yes, the veteran wide receiver and longtime beloved fixture for the Indianapolis Colts during the Andrew Luck era is still without an NFL home. In fact, he hasn’t played a down in 2022, but there’s no report of him sending his retirement papers, making him eligible for a return.

Even back on July 21, 2022, Mike Kaye of the Pro Football Network called the man who is 309 yards away from 10,000 career receiving yards a possible Rams fit.

“T.Y. Hilton’s trademark deep speed isn’t what it used to be. That said, he’s still a sharp route runner and an impressive leader. It’s possible Hilton returns to Indianapolis over the next few weeks, but he could also look to latch onto a contender like the Rams or Kansas City Chiefs, just to chase a ring at this point in his career. He caught 23 passes for 331 yards and three touchdowns last season,” Kaye wrote.

While Colts general manager Chris Ballard made the decision to part ways with the multiple Pro Bowler before the regular season, he said back in August that he believes Hilton, 33, can still play.

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Add ClutchPoints to the list of those who believe that Hilton can contribute to the Rams — writing on Tuesday, November 15 how Hilton can impact the depleted franchise from an experience and leadership standpoint.

Making Realistic Sense of the Rams WR Room Without Kupp

Sure, Sean McVay and the Rams have had to operate without Kupp before: During the 2018 run to the NFC title.

However, that was a Rams team that had Robert Woods still plus featured a versatile running and receiving threat in Todd Gurley. This Rams team has struggled with running the ball amid the offensive line injuries and has no one else in the WR room reaching past 30 receptions yet.

This unit is a major question mark without Kupp. Allen Robinson is among those WRs who has yet to surpass the 30-catch mark and hasn’t produced his first 100-yard game yet as a Ram. But now “A-Rob” has a great chance of handling the No. 1 WR duties like he did in Jacksonville and Chicago. Then there’s Van Jefferson who reached the end zone for the first time this season against the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday. But Jefferson is slowly returning from the knee ailment that took him away for six games in 2022.

Meanwhile, the 2021 class of wideouts have either held different roles or haven’t received much action. Ben Skowronek has been used more in a flex tight end/fullback role while Tutu Atwell has been listed as a non-injury inactive for three games. Fellow draft mate Jacob Harris has spent most of his time on the practice squad. Undrafted 2022 free agent Lance McCutcheon found his way to the huddle for the Cards game ahead of Atwell and Harris.

Hilton may not be the dynamic versatile threat he was at Florida International University or in his prime with the Colts. But at this stage, he can be an emergency rental for a team suddenly appearing to need WR help, plus add some needed veteran leadership to navigate through this torrid start in L.A.

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