The Rams won against the Cardinals on Monday night in a close game, 30-23. LA held on and capitalized on Kyler Murray’s 2 turnovers. The offense was again turnover free and took some more deep shots to set up scores. The defense contained Murray and put pressure in his face all game. The Rams will look to continue their good streak against the Seahawks at home next week. Now let’s break down the Good, the Bad, and the Meh of the Rams win over the Cardinals in prime time.
The wide receiver room had a great game against Arizona with a total of 287 yards. Cooper Kupp had a career high 13 receptions and a crucial touchdown in the 3rd quarter. He had a big impact all game and racked up the yards after catch. Van Jefferson caught a 52 yard deep bomb from Stafford that set the tone for the rest of the game on offense. Odell had another great game and has now caught a TD in the last 3 games. He’s starting to get more comfortable in the offense and find his stride as a Robert Woods replacement.
Stafford continued to build upon his good performance last week against Jacksonville and had 3 TDS with no interceptions and a 139.2 passer rating. He made some exceptional throws including a no-look pass and a tight touchdown throw to Kupp. The Rams got back to more play action and running the ball which opened up the field for some deep shots. The Rams have now gotten back on a streak and should look to continue it next week at home versus Seattle.
The Defensive line got after Kyler Murray all night and pressured him consistently. Aaron Donald had possibly his best game of the season, sacked Murray 4 times and had 3 TFL’s. Greg Gaines continued his great play with a sack and a good stop while Kyler was on the move. The consistent pressure on Murray is what helped win the game and create those 2 interceptions from Murray.
After Ramsey was ruled out hours before the game due to Covid, the rest of LA’s secondary depth had to step up, and they didn’t have the best performances. They gave up a total of 383 passing yards with an average of 12 yards per catch. Kyler Murray was picking on the inexperienced guys like Kareem Orr and David Long. They weren’t the reason that LA lost the game, but did give up big chunks of yards. Christian Kirk and AJ Green both caught deep shots of 47 and 36 respectively, while the DBs covering them looked confused. The Corner depth outside of Ramsey doesn’t look too good, and with Darious Williams a free agent this offseason, it’ll be a position of need.
Michel had another solid game leading the backfield but didn’t flash as much as he did against the Jaguars. Arizona is a more solid defense than the Jags, and he still did all he was asked to do. He averaged 4 YPC and had a couple of good runs with 19 yards being the longest of the night. Michel seemed to be stuffed a couple of times at the line, and other times found his holes for a good gain. When Henderson returns from injury, I’d like to see them in a role similar to McKissic and Gibson in Washington.
The Run Defense has struggled a bit this season, but did alright against a strong Arizona rushing offense. The main reason for their troubles being missed tackles and the absence of a great middle linebacker. They had some struggles with Conner at the goal line and his pass catching ability. However, they were able to contain Murray in the pocket and limited him when scrambling. The Run defense will face another similar challenge when Russel Wilson comes to LA, so let’s see if they can keep it up.
The rookie linebacker showed out against Arizona with another pick on the season from Kyler Murray. He had a solid game with 7 tackles and a pass defended. I think that he could have done a better job against the run like the rest of the team which is what landed him in the meh section. I’m excited to see his development as he gets more playing time and hopefully fills the void at MLB.
Week 15 Outlook
Overall, this was a good win against a division team that the team can keep building off of. They rediscovered their identity on offense and the defense had some game changing plays. They learned from week 4’s loss and attacked the Cardinals weaknesses. If the Rams continue to play this way for the rest of the year along with the adjustments, they’re Super Bowl contenders. Next up is Seattle at home where they’ll have to have another strong defensive performance to win.