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Rams WR Tutu Atwell gaining trust as a deep-threat specialist

Rams WR Tutu Atwell gaining trust as a deep-threat specialist

  • Second-year Rams wide receiver TuTu Atwell participates in drills during...

    Second-year Rams wide receiver TuTu Atwell participates in drills during a training camp practice on Thursday at UC Irvine. Atwell is making the most of the opportunities that were presented after Van Jefferson went down with a knee injury. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams quarterback John Wolford (13) participates in drills at the...

    Rams quarterback John Wolford (13) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams wide receiver Allen Robinson II (1) participates in drills...

    Rams wide receiver Allen Robinson II (1) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) participates in drills at the...

    Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp (10) participates in drills at...

    Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp (10) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams linebacker Daniel Hardy (44) participates in drills at the...

    Rams linebacker Daniel Hardy (44) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive back Jalen Ramsey (5) participates in drills at...

    Rams defensive back Jalen Ramsey (5) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams running back Darrell Henderson Jr., left, participates in drills...

    Rams running back Darrell Henderson Jr., left, participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald (99) participates in drills at...

    Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald (99) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive tackle Bobby Brown III (95) participates in drills...

    Rams defensive tackle Bobby Brown III (95) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) participates in drills at the...

    Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive back Robert Rochell (31) and wide receiver Lance...

    Rams defensive back Robert Rochell (31) and wide receiver Lance McCutcheon (82) participate in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams linebacker Anthony Hines III (57) and linebacker Jacob Hummel...

    Rams linebacker Anthony Hines III (57) and linebacker Jacob Hummel (59) participate in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams offensive guard Logan Bruss (60) participates in drills at...

    Rams offensive guard Logan Bruss (60) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams quarterback Luis Perez (14) participates in drills at the...

    Rams quarterback Luis Perez (14) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams running back Darrell Henderson Jr. (27) participates in drills...

    Rams running back Darrell Henderson Jr. (27) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) participates in drills at the...

    Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams offensive guard Logan Bruss (60) participates in drills at...

    Rams offensive guard Logan Bruss (60) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams tight end Kendall Blanton (86) participates in drills at...

    Rams tight end Kendall Blanton (86) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald (99) participates in drills at...

    Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald (99) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford participates in drills at the NFL...

    Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams linebacker Travin Howard (32) participates in drills at the...

    Rams linebacker Travin Howard (32) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams linebacker Brayden Thomas (98) participates in drills at the...

    Rams linebacker Brayden Thomas (98) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams players participate in drills at the NFL football team’s...

    Rams players participate in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams tight end Jamal Pettigrew (81) participates in drills at...

    Rams tight end Jamal Pettigrew (81) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams wide receiver Allen Robinson II (1) participates in drills...

    Rams wide receiver Allen Robinson II (1) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams quarterback John Wolford (13) participates in drills at the...

    Rams quarterback John Wolford (13) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams running back Raymond Calais (30) participates in drills at...

    Rams running back Raymond Calais (30) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive lineman Elijah Garcia (69) participates in drills at...

    Rams defensive lineman Elijah Garcia (69) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams kicker Matt Gay participates in drills at the NFL...

    Rams kicker Matt Gay participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams wide receiver Ben Skowronek (18) participates in drills at...

    Rams wide receiver Ben Skowronek (18) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams tight end Brycen Hopkins (88) Los Angeles Rams offensive...

    Rams tight end Brycen Hopkins (88) Los Angeles Rams offensive linebacker Brayden Thomas (98) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp (10) participates in drills at...

    Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp (10) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive tackle Bobby Brown III (95) participates in drills...

    Rams defensive tackle Bobby Brown III (95) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive tackle Bobby Brown III (95) participates in drills...

    Rams defensive tackle Bobby Brown III (95) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Second-year Rams wide receiver TuTu Atwell participates in drills during...

    Second-year Rams wide receiver TuTu Atwell participates in drills during a training camp practice on Thursday at UC Irvine. Atwell is making the most of the opportunities that were presented after Van Jefferson went down with a knee injury. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams quarterback Bryce Perkins (16) participates in drills at the...

    Rams quarterback Bryce Perkins (16) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams wide receiver Ben Skowronek (18) participates in drills at...

    Rams wide receiver Ben Skowronek (18) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive tackle A’Shawn Robinson (94) participates in drills at...

    Rams defensive tackle A’Shawn Robinson (94) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams tight end Tyler Higbee (89) participates in drills at...

    Rams tight end Tyler Higbee (89) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams head coach Sean McVay, left, wide receiver Cooper Kupp...

    Rams head coach Sean McVay, left, wide receiver Cooper Kupp (10), and quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) participate in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams running back Cam Akers (3) participates in drills at...

    Rams running back Cam Akers (3) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams tight end Brycen Hopkins (88) participates in drills at...

    Rams tight end Brycen Hopkins (88) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive tackle Bobby Brown III (95) participates in drills...

    Rams defensive tackle Bobby Brown III (95) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive back Jalen Ramsey participates in drills at the...

    Rams defensive back Jalen Ramsey participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams wide receiver Brandon Powell participates in drills at the...

    Rams wide receiver Brandon Powell participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams kicker Matt Gay participates in drills at the NFL...

    Rams kicker Matt Gay participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams kicker Matt Gay (8) participates in drills at the...

    Rams kicker Matt Gay (8) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive back Jalen Ramsey, left, participates in drills at...

    Rams defensive back Jalen Ramsey, left, participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive back Jalen Ramsey participates in drills at the...

    Rams defensive back Jalen Ramsey participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive lineman Elijah Garcia (69) participates in drills at...

    Rams defensive lineman Elijah Garcia (69) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive tackle Greg Gaines (91) participates in drills at...

    Rams defensive tackle Greg Gaines (91) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive tackle Marquise Copeland (93) participates in drills at...

    Rams defensive tackle Marquise Copeland (93) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams quarterback Bryce Perkins (16) participates in drills at the...

    Rams quarterback Bryce Perkins (16) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive specialist Russ Yeast II (43) and linebacker Jake...

    Rams defensive specialist Russ Yeast II (43) and linebacker Jake Gervase (39) participate in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams quarterback John Wolford (13) participates in drills at the...

    Rams quarterback John Wolford (13) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams linebacker Benton Whitley (51) participates in drills at the...

    Rams linebacker Benton Whitley (51) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams linebacker Chris Garrett (48) and offensive lineback Keir Thomas...

    Rams linebacker Chris Garrett (48) and offensive lineback Keir Thomas II (96) participate in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams wide receiver J.J. Koski (17) participates in drills at...

    Rams wide receiver J.J. Koski (17) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams quarterback Luis Perez (14) participates in drills at the...

    Rams quarterback Luis Perez (14) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams tight end Brycen Hopkins (88) and offensive linebacker Daniel...

    Rams tight end Brycen Hopkins (88) and offensive linebacker Daniel Hardy (44) participate in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams linebacker Jacob Hummel (59) participates in drills at the...

    Rams linebacker Jacob Hummel (59) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams linebacker Bobby Wagner (45) participates in drills at the...

    Rams linebacker Bobby Wagner (45) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams quarterback Bryce Perkins (16) participates in drills at the...

    Rams quarterback Bryce Perkins (16) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams running back Raymond Calais (30) participates in drills at...

    Rams running back Raymond Calais (30) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams linebacker Brayden Thomas (98) participates in drills at the...

    Rams linebacker Brayden Thomas (98) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams linebacker Brayden Thomas (98) participates in drills at the...

    Rams linebacker Brayden Thomas (98) participates in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams head coach Sean McVay speaks to reporters at the...

    Rams head coach Sean McVay speaks to reporters at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald (99) signs autographs for fans...

    Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald (99) signs autographs for fans at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams fans have footballs signed by linebacker Bobby Wagner, left,...

    Rams fans have footballs signed by linebacker Bobby Wagner, left, at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams head coach Sean McVay signs autographs for fans at...

    Rams head coach Sean McVay signs autographs for fans at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Second-year Rams wide receiver TuTu Atwell participates in drills during...

    Second-year Rams wide receiver TuTu Atwell participates in drills during a training camp practice on Thursday at UC Irvine. Atwell is making the most of the opportunities that were presented after Van Jefferson went down with a knee injury. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Rams helmets sit on the sideline while players participate in...

    Rams helmets sit on the sideline while players participate in drills at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

  • Pads and helmets from Rams players lay on the ground...

    Pads and helmets from Rams players lay on the ground at the NFL football team’s practice facility in Irvine, Calif. Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

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IRVINE — Some receivers take offense if they’re not described as an all-around playmaker, but not Tutu Atwell and he doesn’t care that he’s being labeled as a deep-threat specialist.

Atwell is focused on gaining trust from his Rams coaches and teammates and he’s doing that by stretching the field with his blazing speed.

“I can do it all, but I have to gain that trust,” Atwell said Wednesday. “I’m working on gaining that trust and showing coaches that I can do a little bit of everything, so I can have more opportunities.”

Atwell has gained trust in the past week by making the most of the opportunities that were presented after wide receiver Van Jefferson went down with a knee tweak. He’s been on the receiving end of multiple deep touchdown passes from backup quarterback John Wolford.

The first one came Wednesday on a rollout from Wolford, which bought the speedy second-year wideout enough time to get downfield. The second deep touchdown occurred Thursday and that was just Wolford trusting Atwell to make a play by letting the ball fly.

Atwell is receiving more opportunities, but it also helps that the Rams are designing plays that suit his strengths. The 5-foot-9 Atwell also connected with Matthew Stafford on a deep strike during Thursday’s 7-on-7 period.

“I’ve seen it,” Atwell said about the designed plays for him. “We have talks about it in meetings, we look at it, read the script and they let me know what plays I’m in. When I get the opportunity, I just gotta show everybody what I can do, so they can trust me and I can make more plays.”

Expectations remain high for the 2021 second-round pick from Louisville, despite a shaky rookie season that was cut short because of a shoulder injury. Star wide receiver Cooper Kupp has raved about Atwell and he spent most of his rest day on Thursday coaching Atwell on the sideline during team drills. A few plays after meeting with Kupp, Atwell caught his touchdown bomb from Wolford.

With Atwell making the most of his opportunities as a deep threat, he’s gotten more snaps to showcase his full skillset. He’s at a disadvantage with his slim frame, but he’s shown toughness and reliable hands by making receptions in the middle of the field.

“He’s been great,” Kupp said. “Seeing him out here, he’s slowed down mentally, but physically he’s able to do all the things that you want. He’s flying around, making some tough plays. I think there’s just a little bit of growth that you have to go through. Unfortunately, (he) didn’t get the whole season last year. There’s that growth you have to go through matching the physicality of what this game is.

“I think he’s done a really good job stepping up to the plate to this point. There’s a lot of camp left and I’m looking forward to seeing him kind of continue to grow in that role.”

CAMP NOTES FROM THURSDAY

Wide receiver Jacob Harris didn’t practice because of a groin strain and he’s expected to be sidelined for a couple of weeks, according to Rams coach Sean McVay. The 6-foot-5 Harris started his career as a tight end last season before moving to wide receiver. …

Outside linebacker Terrell Lewis received a rest day as a precaution because of his history with knee injuries. The third-year player has had a strong camp and recently received praise from McVay and starting edge rusher Leonard Floyd. …

Rookie Decobie Durant saw action as the slot cornerback with the first-team unit. He recorded another takeaway after jumping in front of Atwell near the right sideline for an acrobatic interception. Durant and fellow rookie cornerback Derion Kendrick have received first-team snaps this week.

“Guys that aren’t afraid,” McVay said of the rookie cornerbacks. “It’s not too big for them, they come in there, I think when you’ve got veteran leaders like Bobby (Wagner), like Aaron (Donald), Leonard Floyd. You’re seeing great communication on the back end from some of our veteran safeties.

“There’s a lot of different things that we’re doing defensively but it’s not too big for them. They’re very confident and what I like as much as anything is their ability. If a play doesn’t go the way we want, hit the reset button with a short memory, but still have that swag and confidence to be able to make the play on the next one.” …

Second-year wide receiver Ben Skowronek managed to haul in a touchdown reception after being hit by multiple defenders during red-zone drills. Along with Skowronek and Atwell, Brandon Powell and J.J. Koski received opportunities with the first-team unit. Allen Robinson received a light workload during team drills and joined Kupp on the sideline.


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