NFL Reporter Discusses Los Angeles Rams, San Francisco 49ers

The Rams have "a parade of stars and personalities," Evan Washburn said, but will they meet expectations in 2018?

The DA Show
November 01, 2018 - 12:15 pm

USA Today Images

Video of Reporter & Analyst for CBS Sports Evan Washburn

A pair of NFC West teams enter the 2018 season with high, albeit different, expectations. The Los Angeles Rams are expected to contend for – and possibly win – the Super Bowl, while the San Francisco 49ers, who won their final five games of the season last year with Jimmy Garoppolo, are expected to contend for a playoff spot.

Ultimately, which team will better handle the expectations?

“I think the 49ers handle it better because . . . their expectations aren’t what the Rams have,” CBS Sports and CBS Sports Network reporter Evan Washburn said on The DA Show. “I just saw the Rams yesterday in Baltimore as part of this joint practice with the Ravens, and it’s like the Dream Team showing up. It really is a parade of stars and personalities – from Aqib Talib to Marcus Peters to Ndamukong Suh. There were moments in this joint practice where, especially up front – even without Aaron Donald – they were dominant. They were running through that Ravens offensive line.”

While a parade of personalities can bring talent and headlines, it can also bring drama and negative attention.

“I remember doing a game last year where Marcus Peters threw a flag into the stands and then left the field,” Washburn said, referring to Kansas City’s December loss to the Jets. “Stuff like that may happen with this team. And if you have the bookend that this is Super Bowl-or-bust or NFC Championship-or-bust, that, to me, becomes an unsafe bet. I think the 49ers have shown some marked improvement, but they’re not being labeled as a team that we should really worry about or think about as a true NFC contender to win the Super Bowl. I just think that’s the safer bet for this thing not kind of going south.”

Both the 49ers and Rams open the season on the road. The 49ers will play the Vikings on Sept. 9, while the Rams will face the Raiders on Sept. 10 on Monday Night Football. Kickoff is at 1 p.m. and 10:20 p.m. ET respectively.