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Unlikely backup QB Sean Mannion 'a perfect fit' for Rams' offense

September 11, 2016 10:02AM
Unlikely backup QB Sean Mannion 'a perfect fit' for Rams' offense
By Alden Gonzalez


THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. -- Case Keenum is the incumbent starting quarterback and Jared Goff is the No. 1 overall pick, but Sean Mannion, recently named the backup, is "a perfect fit for our offense," Los Angeles Rams quarterbacks coach Chris Weinke said. The number of adjustments required at the line of scrimmage, the heavy dose of throwing from the pocket and the reliance on play-action passing are all aspects Mannion believes fall right in line with his strengths.

"I feel really comfortable in this offense," Mannion said. "Really I felt coming out of college last year with a similar scheme I was a good fit, just with what we did in college. And I think with what we're doing now, it fits really well."

Mannion was a third-round pick in 2015 after being a four-year starter at Oregon State, leaving as the Pac-12's all-time leader in career passing yards. He threw all of seven NFL passes as a rookie and entered this season looking like a lock for third-string duties, because Keenum won three of four games to finish the 2015 season and because the Rams moved up 14 spots to draft Goff.

But Goff struggled in the preseason, completing 22 of 49 passes while committing four turnovers, and now Mannion is next in line.

"It means a lot," Mannion said of being named the backup. "I’m going to do whatever I can to support Case and support the team and help us throughout the week. The reality about playing the [No.] 2, the old saying is, you’re a play away. For the coaches to put me in that position, that if something happens I have to come in and win a game, that means a lot to me. It’s something I’ve worked really hard for. I’ve felt really happy with the way I’ve been playing, really all the way back to the first week of [organized team activities]. For me to get this opportunity means a lot."

Mannion was born and raised about 25 minutes east of where the Oakland Raiders play, but he grew up a fan of the Jeff Garcia-led San Francisco 49ers and will have family in the stands for the Monday Night Football opener from Levi's Stadium.

Now 24, Mannion led the Rams to a come-from-behind victory over the Dallas Cowboys in the preseason opener from Los Angeles Coliseum, throwing for 147 yards and three touchdowns in the second half. He didn't play in Week 2, then went 6-of-12 for 43 yards in Week 3 and 15-of-23 for 135 yards in Week 4. Since last season, Mannion believes he's more "consistently accurate" and "quicker with the reads."

"Really I think quarterbacking is about knowing where to go with the ball and putting it in the right place, and I think in both of those areas I’ve made a lot of strides from last year to this year," Mannion said. "And I think, too, is just the comfortability; getting a year’s worth of reps. Maybe not as much on the field, but more mental reps in the meeting and stuff. You’re no longer thinking about what you’re doing; you’re kind of reacting to the defense."

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  Unlikely backup QB Sean Mannion 'a perfect fit' for Rams' offense

RamBill381September 11, 2016 10:02AM

  I wouldn't care if Mannion ends up the starter...

TonyHunter87122September 11, 2016 10:28AM

  Do we get our draft picks back if we fire Fisher?

max140September 11, 2016 10:31AM

  Re: LOL

TonyHunter87124September 11, 2016 10:34AM