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'All or Nothing' showcases Rams' up-and-down season

How much you'll be interested by the new season of All or Nothing might correlate directly with how intrigued you are by a car crash.

The 2016 Rams blew past fender-bender status by about Week 6. By Week 10, they were a high-velocity T-bone. By Week 15, it was a head-on collision, flames shooting to the heavens. Look away, children!

It was a wreck that cost coach Jeff Fisher his job, and endangered the reputation of general manager Les Snead and everyone around him. On one level, it had to be a worst-case scenario for the All or Nothing crew embedded with the team since the summer. After all, what could be worse than the tireless documentation of a 4-12 NFL afterthought?

Then again, this very bad Rams squad represented a unique opportunity. We've watched NFL Films document great teams for decades. But what happens when you set loose Films' powerful storytelling ability on a season gone rancid? There were no happy endings in L.A., but that doesn't mean there wasn't a compelling story to be told.

All or Nothing: A Season with the Los Angeles Rams will land on Amazon Prime Video on Friday, a run of eight episodes that begins with the team's relocation process to Los Angeles and culminates with the hiring of Sean McVay as the team's new head coach.

Last year, All or Nothing debuted with a detailed look at the NFC West champion Arizona Cardinals, a talented team that came one win from advancing to the Super Bowl.

All or Nothing is pretty much the only connective tissue between the '15 Cardinals and '16 Rams. The Rams lost 11 of their last 12 games, after all. But as we watched the first two episodes of the series, we were reminded how much hope was in the building at the start of the year.

You could say that about all teams, of course, but the Rams had legitimate reason for optimism. Their defense, led by all-world talent Aaron Donald, was a unit on the rise. Their offense was led by running back Todd Gurley, who was coming off NFC Offensive Rookie of the Year honors. It also included first-overall pick Jared Goff, the guy the team hoped -- and still hopes -- will develop into the face of the franchise at quarterback. The move west meant an energized fan base and home games that feature 90,000 screaming Los Angelenos.

The Rams -- somewhat strangely, in retrospect -- were featured on Hard Knocks last summer, and it felt at times that Goff's development was being sugarcoated for the audience. Goff had never even taken a snap under center before turning, but you would have thought the young passer was ready to move mountains by the Hard Knocks season finale last September.

So consider All or Nothing something of a do-over for NFL Films producers, who get another shot to show us what kind of challenge a quarterback of Goff's experience is facing, both behind-the-scenes and on the field. Fisher didn't even dress Goff for the season opener -- a grisly 28-0 loss to the woeful 49ers that gets a beefy post-mortem in the premiere -- and Goff remains affixed to the bench in the season's early going even as it becomes apparent that Case Keenum is not the answer.

We want to learn more about Goff. All or Nothing could be a great teaching tool.

Though it's easy to forget now, the Rams actually started the season 3-1 before things went sideways. The beginning of All or Nothing tells that story, as the defense carries an offense that simply wasn't ready for prime time.

From a viewer standpoint, the real intrigue will come in later episodes, as the losses mount, Gurley and Goff struggle, and it becomes clear that Fisher's job is in serious jeopardy. Fisher's firing feels like the centerpiece moment -- at least it should be -- and it's crazy to think something as sensitive as the dismissal of a very famous head coach was documented from every possible angle.

So we're in. Consider us rubberneckers, watching a slow-motion car crash with morbid fascination. Jon Hamm -- the series narrator -- is in backseat. Hop in ... if you're into this sort of thing.

Stream the Amazon Original Series "All or Nothing: A Season with the Los Angeles Rams" on Amazon Prime now on

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