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Rams lose 15-6 to chicago; The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

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  • Rams lose 15-6 to chicago; The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

    The Rams dropped to 11-2 tonight with an ugly 15-6 road loss to the chicago bears. Tonight's loss had nothing to do with the extremely loud bears home crowd and nothing to do with the 29 degree weather, and everything to do with a dominant bears defense and a horrible night for Goff. The Rams were unable to find any method of getting Gurley to be a factor in this game, and that, more than anything else, is the common factor in games the Rams have lost in the McVay era. The Rams offensive woes wasted a solid effort by the defense which intercepted the bears 3 times, gave the offense some solid field position and every chance to win the game with even a mediocre performance. The bears played great defensively and deserve a ton of credit, but there is plenty to be seriously concerned about if the Rams really want to make a run at the super bowl as they are going to face other tough defenses ahead. In fact, tonight's game had many common elements to last week's showing against detroit, with the difference being that the bears are a really good team and the lions are lousy.

    The Good

    The defense had three interceptions (Peters, Robey-Coleman and Johnson) and twice those interceptions gave the Rams the ball in the red zone or close to it on strong runbacks. The rams held chicago to 19 first downs, less than 300 yards of total offense and 110 yards of passing. Nice sack for Fowler/Franklin-Myers early in the game. The defense also played well in the red zone for the most part keeping the bears from getting way ahead while the offense was doing absolutely nothing and hung in there despite the time of possession problems caused by the pathetic offense. This included a stop after the first goff int where the bears had a first and goal at the four and only managed a field goal. In short, while the defense could have done better against the run, the defense absolutely played well enough to win if the top offense in the league had even remotely showed up.

    The fake punt was effective, although it took a review to prevent the Rams from getting screwed on the spot for the second time this year.
    Saffold and Sullivan both made it back into the game after injuries knocked them out for a play or two each.
    Leg made two field goals, including a 50 yarder (but see below on the costly miss)

    The Bad

    Hard to say where to start. The Rams had 14 first downs and only 23 minutes time of possession. Only 214 yards of total offense, about 230 below our average. Four turnovers on interceptions plus a fumble by goff that we recovered. No room at all for gurley to run the entire game and we gave up way too soon on the running game. Gurley wound up with 11-28 and 3 catches for 30 yards. We had 93 yards of offense in the first half and zero first downs in the third quarter. We were also an awful 3-12 on third down.

    9 penalties for 57 yards including some terrible pre snap penalties. Stupid holding penalties on kickoffs, one of which help lead to the safety.
    Terrible play calling over and over by McVay, abandoning the running game, not throwing to gurley, calling no plays to get the ball out of goff's hands quickly when we were struggling so badly against the chicago pass rush. Awful play calling right before half when we had a chance to get into field goal range. I simply can not understand why mcvay can not make adjustments to give goff a better chance at success when helen keller could see that goff is struggling terribly against the pass rush. I dont see how anyone thinks you can win a super bowl giving your qb all day to throw. Your qb has got to be able to throw under pressure and that means slants, more runs, actual screen passes at key points of the game to give yourself a chance with play action, rather than deep drops and deep routes over and over and over again.

    Mcvay's use of time outs is ridiculous and martz like. He burned 2 timeouts at the 11 minute mark of the 4th quarter and we got absolutely nothing out of either of them. Some of that is on goff, see below.
    We gave up 194 yards rushing on 35 carries, albeit some of that on qb runs, but still got gashed too often. Not enough pass rush. Aaron donald was triple teamed and no one else with the possible exception of fowler early really stepped up to help him. Suh continues to disappoint as a pass rusher.

    Red zone 0-2. Not acceptable and that won't be good enough in the playoffs
    Reynolds needs to run sharper routes and turn up field and run with the ball. He was lousy tonight, we really missed kupp. He dropped a ball by bobbling it on a rare good throw by goff in the fourth quarter. He ran a lousy route on the Goff int. He failed to convert the third down by running sideways rather than upfield.
    Everett had a couple of drops (also had a couple of nice catches). Higbee was invisible.
    Leg missed a 40 yard field goal in the 4th quarter that would have made it a one score game on a terrible hold by hekker.
    Hatfield likely out for the year, taken off on the cart with leg in the cast. Another blow for the special teams.

    The Ugly

    Goff was ugly all night. Sure, the offensive line play was not great, but he had plenty of chances to make throws and almost never did so, including some horrible judgment calls. The first interception happened when whitworth stepped on his foot, but so what? Goff was throwing to a receiver that was not remotely close to open and the throw was awful. Goff threw four interceptions and you are not going to beat playoff caliber teams, on the road or on the moon, throwing four interceptions. He wound up 20-44-180-4 int's and a passer rating below 20. He looks rattled to me and it is serious cause for concern that he appears to be getting worse as he gets under pressure. His audibles remain terrible and he is constantly on the verge of having the play clock expire which is causing the time out problem. He is not taking what the defense gives him. The second INT was a hail mary, but why not a quick short throw to get a short gain, a receiver out of bounds and give leg a chance at a field goal? Terrible judgment. The third INT was a real backbreaker. Johnson runs it deep into chicago territory, we have a chance to jump right back into the game and he throws a horrible ball on the first play after the turnover to reynolds who was not open. His worst throw of the night may have been on the early third and two when he missed a wide open crossing robert woods. Just an awful night and frankly, it looked a lot like the performance against detroit, with the bears defense being that much stronger than the lions. Again, he didnt get a lot of help tonight, but if the Rams want a shot at the title, there is simply no way around the fact that their qb is going to have to play a LOT better.

    You could really put the entire offensive effort in the ugly column tonight, with a total of 6 points. but i left the non-goff stuff in the bad column because i think if Goff plays just a decent game and makes a few throws, a lot of other stuff may have opened up and we would have had a great chance to win the game anyway because the bears offense really didnt do much at all. I could very easily have put the mcvay play calling in the ugly section as well since i just don't think he is putting goff in the best position to be successful against the pass rush when our offensive line struggles. Our offensive line also needs to play a lot better.


    You have to give chicago a ton of credit. They followed the blue print for beating the Rams by running the ball just enough and pressuring goff all night, which lead to lots of mistakes and bad throws. Chicago most importantly took gurley out of the game and that is the #1 thing you need to do to beat the Rams. This game was virtually identical to what happened to new orleans in their loss to dallas. Defense plays well enough to win, but the offense is just awful in part because of the strong defense against it and in part because of lousy execution and poor red zone play when chances were available.

    On the plus side, it's encouraging that the defense is playing much better. If i told you at the start of the night that the Rams would hold chicago to 15 points and intercept three passes you surely would have thought that the Rams would win the game and win it convincingly. That is something to build on as the Rams look to rally, finish the season strong as they head into the playoffs, and hope that new orleans stumbles again so the Rams regain a shot at home field throughout the nfc playoffs. If they dont play a lot better offensively than they played tonight and against detroit last week, home field is not going to matter much.

    The Rams look to rebound next sunday night against a desperate philadelphia team that allowed 586 yards of offense today to dallas losing in overtime. Philadephia features a stout defense line and terrible corners since their starting corners and some backups are out for the year. Let's all hope the McVay can game plan and play call to take advantage and knock Philly out of the playoff race. The Rams have never lost two in a row under McVay and next week is going to tell us a lot about the character of both the team and our young and suddenly badly struggling qb. It is in all liklihood a must win if the Rams want a shot at home field throughout the playoffs, but more importantly, its super important in terms of the Rams learning from their offensive struggles over the last couple of weeks and seeing what we can do to reverse that trend as we head down the stretch approaching the playoffs. Sure, the Rams should beat both Arizona and the whiners to clinch the second seed and the bye even if they lose to philly, but i dont think any of us want to depend on limping into the playoffs with consecutive losses and then depending on beating two lousy teams with no margain for error.

    The Rams are 11-2 and that is a terrific record, but for tonight, they looked like an overmatched team without much promise in the playoffs and certainly not a super bowl contender. Chicago is a very good team, but they showed very little offensively tonight and i see no reason that the Rams can't beat them if they see them again at home in the playoffs. Of course, that would require an entirely different offensive performance than we saw tonight. This is the time of the year that championship teams build momentum and play their best football, and that certainly has not been the case for the Rams over the last two games coming out of the bye week.

    Ramming speed to all

    general counsel

  • #2
    Thanks GC for accurately capturing the GBU (mostly the B&U).

    I wasn't feeling well while watching the game. It is one of a handful of games I've given up on (radio / TV) since I began following the Rams in the late 50s. Again, this game was mostly 'B&U'.

    Our 11-1 record going into Soldier Field was very misleading. Our performance vs Bears, terribly disappointing. Anticipation of playoffs at this point ... quite concerning.

    Rams must regroup, renew, revamp.


    • #3
      Maybe this was addressed during the broadcast, but I stopped watching after the sack on fourth down. Having said that, I'd like to be a fly on the wall in the film room on that last interception by Goff. When I go back and watch the play a couple of times, it looks like Woods really rounds that route rather than crispy cutting to the outside. Considering Goff threw farther to the outside than where Woods ended up being, it's almost like he expected him to be more outside. I'd love to hear McVay and company break that down to see if that was on Goff for missing or on Woods for not being where he should have been.
      Last edited by Nick; -12-10-2018, 04:36 AM.


      • #4
        I commented on a lot of your points in a thread I posted separately, so I won't cover old ground. But among the valid points you make from this debacle, one stands out: Goff needs to be able to do a better job under duress. ANY QB in this league who is NFL starting material can make throws from a clean pocket. To me, the guys that stand out at the position are the guys who can get rid of the ball quickly, accurately and effectively when they are under pressure. You simply cannot expect your offensive line to give you 5-6 seconds to throw every down- a luxury Goff has had (along with having the game's best back) much of the season. And it's not like he has poor receivers.

        One has to simply hope Goff grows from this, because tonight, he provided a blueprint for the entire league to follow on how to stop the Rams offense.
        Last edited by NJ Ramsfan1; -12-10-2018, 06:11 AM.


        • #5
          I really dont think the blueprint surprises anyone. I think that is common knowledge. The key is that the bears have the personnel to execute on that game plan.

          Ramming speed to all

          general counsel


          • #6
            Can we stop returning kick-off please? We get the ball on the 25 yard line. The start of the second half score was 6-6. The return, penalty, put us at the 9 yard line. Then the safety......


            • #7
              Originally posted by macrammer View Post
              Can we stop returning kick-off please? We get the ball on the 25 yard line. The start of the second half score was 6-6. The return, penalty, put us at the 9 yard line. Then the safety......
              At least when your 5 to 7 yards deep in the end zone. It'd also be nice to not have a penalty every other kickoff.


              • #8
                Originally posted by Ewreck View Post
                At least when your 5 to 7 yards deep in the end zone. It'd also be nice to not have a penalty every other kickoff.
                I would say anytime ball carries into end zone. Why risk the field position? Why risk injury? Why risk a special teams "all too often" penalty Just let it go and give the offense the 25 yard line


                • #9
                  Thank you, GC. Your analysis is, once again, comprehensive and spot on. So, just to augment/respond:

                  · McVay has wandered away from his successful offensive formula: featuring run/pass balance and a variety of effective weapons and plays in both aspects. We’ve got Todd Gurley and a very good offensive line. As the season progresses toward the championship tournament, we should be building on our ability to feature the running game to move the chains and crash into the end zone, setting up the play action/passing game. Instead, McVay has steadily moved away from the running game, and even away from the short passing game. He has become more and more over-reliant on downfield passing. This is too one-dimensional, is putting too much stress on a young QB, and is disabling us from controlling the clock and the flow of the game. This was a night to feature running the ball (I disagree that the cold weather was not a factor at all. I believe it played a part in Goff’s passing difficulties). Yet, we rush the ball 13 times (And one those was Goff and another was Davis when the game was over). Gurley gets 11 carries?! Just ridiculous, and McVay was right to be so self-critical in his press conference. (Though that act is going to get tired fast if he doesn’t actually improve his game planning and play calling.) At this point, I am seeing signs that the O line is losing its initiative and Gurley is becoming frustrated. Things are going in the wrong direction as the season is reaching its crescendo, and McVay has his work cut out for him to re-balance his offensive approach, get things moving in the right direction, and get the offense confident and up to speed again.
                  · The significance to this offense of the loss of Kupp cannot be overstated. He is a key piece, critical to effectively meshing the various parts of the offense, and his loss has upset and rattled McVay and his offense. Reynold may develop into a good WR, but he cannot begin to replace Kupp’s thinking approach to the slot or his run blocking. (And we all saw Reynolds make a couple of terrible plays last night, including a mental error in not immediately diving upfield into open territory for a first down on a critical third down play.) The fact is: former Ram, Darian Stewart, put a big dent in the Rams’ chances this season with his out of bounds/face mask/horse collar tackle of Kupp (for which he was not fined). I know Kupp came back to play after that, but that injury must have been a contributing cause of that knee giving out, without contact, a few weeks later.
                  · Pharoh Cooper is an idiot. Since he came back and resumed returning kickoffs, I have watched in horror as he has chosen to run back kick after kick, taking all the risks that come with that, rather than do the obvious thing that every kick returner with an IQ of 90 has figured out: the ball comes out to the 25, risk free, on a touchback. They changed the rules on this to discourage kickoff returns. It’s a gift. But Cooper doesn’t get it. And last night, it blew up in his/our face. The safety/TD the Bears got on our critical opening possession of the second half (which we chose when we won the toss and deferred at the start of the game) was the key point of the game, and Cooper’s decision to return that kick initiated the chain of events that led to it. He returns the kick to the 26 (so best case scenario, his risk-taking nets us another yard), but of course we have an illegal blocking penalty on the return (another recurrent problem for this team, and one of the risks that comes with choosing to return). So, we start on the 9 instead of the 25. A loss on the first play, and now Goff is dropping back several yards into the end zone. Safety, poor punt, then Bears TD. Down by 2 scores. Momentum to open second half to the Bears. Etc. I understand that Cooper was a pro bowl kick returner last season. But he was terrible in our playoff game, and has been sh*t for brains all this season. He’s what, our 5th or 6th receiver, even after the loss of Kupp? I am not expecting or wanting to see him on the team next season. Natson makes much better kick return decisions.

                  How frustrating for the offense to lay a big egg on a night when the defense gives a solid, winning effort.

                  I don’t want to overreact to this loss. We are 11-2, have won our division, will almost certainly be a 1 or 2 seed with a first round bye, and everything is in front of us. We’ve played and beaten good teams. Even championship teams have poor games, and sometimes zig zag to a title. If we put things back together and get back on track, this game won’t matter (though the loss might wind up critical to our seeding). So, let’s see how the team responds before concluding how significant this loss was to the story of the season. But let’s also be realistic about where we are. McVay’s Rams came into the season with an 0-1 playoff record, having lost a home playoff game as #3 seed to the #6 seed. They have lost their games to the other two of the top three NFC seeds this season. They have a weak home field advantage. At this point, I don’t believe the other NFC contenders are intimidated by the prospect of a playoff match up with the Rams in L.A. McVay and the Rams still have everything to prove. And it starts with this next nationally televised home game against the defending champ Eagles. Though the Eagles have had a tough season and are unlikely for the playoffs after losing to Dallas, they will play hard and with pride on national television against a top NFC seed. How the Rams respond and play in this game will tell us a lot.


                  • #10
                    Excellent evaluations from both GC and Seacone, who touches on a point I felt while watching the game that Goff is missing his "security blanket" with the absence of Kupp. His football IQ is likely the best of any receiver on the team and when the QB needs help Kupp has always been around for Goff.

                    Another valid point is the post game presser by McVay taking the blame. I couldn't help wondering if this was a replay of the presser following the New Orleans game. "Putting the players in bad spots" isn't something that requires a change in philosophy to remedy. I'm almost certain that Gurley's ankle hasn't fully healed and Sean is worried that too many running plays will place TG is jeopardy. My only question is where is John Kelly who ran constantly and successfully during the pre-season, albeit vs. 2's and 3's.

                    No one else has raised it, but I do wonder if we are witnessing the inevitable slow decline of Andrew Whitworth. At age 36 he can be expected to feel a bit fatigued reaching this point in the season. At LT he faces the best edge rushers of each team. I'm not saying he's not playing well, but there are a few more edge rushers getting past him and there is a holding call or two more than we've seen previously.

                    Having touched on these negatives, let me say we are having a great season and I fully expect we'll be playing better by the playoffs. I continue to hope we avoid Seattle as beating a team 3x in a year is tough. Having the Vikes lose last night opens the door for Philly and I fully expect them to bring their A-game. We better do the same. If we run the table we will be 14-2 and that is where several analysts expected us to be. No shame in losing to playoff teams during the season on the road. No stupid losses in the last 3 games, please.

                    Go Rams!


                    • #11
                      That was hard to read because of the accuracy and cold hard truth. I still trust McVay and love him as our coach so I know he'll adjust. I did not like this game from the jump, and that was before Chicago started heating up as a team. The limited use of Gurley made no sense to me especially with how he's been playing all year. Goff was really in a slump; those interceptions were horrific (also sick of the hail mary throws into the end-zone that turn into INTs). People were saying the Saints loss humbled us, I think it was this one. We really looked mediocre out there. I have faith they will adjust, but we definitely need home field.


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by general counsel View Post
                        The Bad

                        ... 9 penalties for 57 yards including some terrible pre snap penalties.
                        I'm going to go further and say this should start falling into the Ugly category ... not simply because of the number of them that keep disrupting drives one way or the other, but because in this game Suh just got his 7th of the year. Which isn't necessarily that remarkable in itself, but because not only does he have more penalties than the rest of the Rams DTs combined, but because he has more penalties than anyone else on the team ...


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by mde8352gorams View Post
                          No one else has raised it, but I do wonder if we are witnessing the inevitable slow decline of Andrew Whitworth. At age 36 he can be expected to feel a bit fatigued reaching this point in the season. At LT he faces the best edge rushers of each team. I'm not saying he's not playing well, but there are a few more edge rushers getting past him and there is a holding call or two more than we've seen previously.
                          The same thought had occurred to me after the game, I'm glad you voiced it here. Whitworth carries a near $16M cap figure next year. I would not be surprised if that was renegotiated somehow or if he was released. I thought he played pretty poorly on the left side Sunday night, and he had at least one drive-stalling penalty as well.


                          • #14
                            Like I said in another thread, one would hope that they will look at those positions going forward. I believe they have two good back up linemen coming up so maybe they will look and these other "older" positions.
                            Lets face it, its a juggling game these days between the older chaps and the young bucks

                            Keeping the Rams Nation Talking


                            Related Topics


                            • general counsel
                              Rams lose to philadelphia 30-23; The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
                              by general counsel
                              For the second sunday night in a row, the Rams laid an egg on national television, losing at home to philadelphia 30-23 to drop their record to 11-3. The Rams are simply not playing like a super bowl contender and frankly have looked just lousy since coming out of the bye week. Tonight marks the first time in the mcvay era that the Rams lost two in a row, and the knee injury to Todd Gurley, along with continued subpar play from Goff and the offensive line leaves the Rams reeling at the most important point of the season. Once again, it is clear that championships can not be won in september, october and november. The Rams were 9-0 and rolling and 10-1 heading into the bye week after a huge win against Kansas City (in which they got incredibly lucky because if Skandrick catches the ball that hit him in the hands late in the 4th quarter the Rams lose that game as well). Since that point, they are 1-2 and have been effectively getting worse every week. Tonight's opponent was not a dominant chicago team playing at home in cold weather. It was a sub .500 team playing with a backup qb that had been torched for 586 yards last week by a team that got shut out earlier today. Furthermore, philadelphia is so banged up in the secondary there are no words to describe their situation. However, when your qb can not seem to throw accurately with guys in his face and your offensive line does not give your qb time, generally speaking, bad things are going to happen. Throw in no functional pass rush as Donald was once again double teamed on every play and no one else was able to get pressure along with losing the turnover battle 3-1 and going 2-6 in the red zone and you have another bad loss. I was highly confident the Rams were going to win this game and win it big, but i guess Dragoon was the only one on the board that saw this coming so kudos to him, although i am sure he would love to have been wrong. The Rams now have to beat both arizona and the whiners to clinch the #2 seed (unless chicago loses a game) and while that might seem simple on paper, with the gurley injury and the way goff is playing, nothing is a sure thing right now in any way.

                              The Good

                              The Rams rallied at the end and had a chance to tie it up. They also had a nice 75 yard drive on their second possession of the game for a td. Gurley had 2 td runs and caught 10 balls for 76 yards in a valiant effort playing with the injured knee. He had a really nice first half running with 49 yards, and then of course mcvay gave up on the running game as the Rams dug themselves a big hole field position and turnover wise and were forced to throw all the time.

                              Johnson had a terrific game in the secondary, saving a td against ertz (who we did a nice job on) and making 14 tackles.
                              Goff made one real nice throw down the field all night, the almost td to reynolds in the fourth quarter.
                              The defense got some stops and kept us in the game with a chance at...
                              -12-16-2018, 09:41 PM
                            • general counsel
                              Rams choke chiefs 54-51; The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
                              by general counsel
                              The Rams pushed their record to 10-1 with a dramatic 54-51 monday night football victory over kansas city in one of the most exciting NFL games ever played. Led by a signature performance from Jared Goff that included some late game heroics, the Rams scored plenty of points, but it was the five turnovers and two touchdowns scored by the defense that made the difference in this game. In fact, in the history of the NFL, no team has EVER played better defense than tonight's Rams while still allowing 51 points! The Rams overcame six Mahomes touchdown passes, 546 yards of offense, give sacks on Goff, two Goff fumbles, one of which resulted in a kansas city touchdown, a missed extra point, an incredibly lucky break late in the fourth quarter when Skandrick dropped an easy interception that probalby would have put the game away for the chiefs and some bizarre play calling by McVay, especially at the end, to emerge with the signature win. Make no mistake about it, this was a championship caliber win and while NFL fans around the world were all screaming great game all night, all of us Rams fans were in cardiac arrest mode for almost the entire game as the lead switched hands multiple times as each team marched up and down the field. Tonight belongs to Goff, Ebukam and Donald, although it was certainly a team effort. Absolutely sensational way for both the Rams and all of us to head into both Thanksgiving and the bye week.

                              The Good

                              Samson Ebukam was a man possessed tonight. Off the charts phenomenal athletic play to intercept Mahomes and run the ball back 25 yards for the touchdown, running over two kansas city players for the last five yards. He also recovered the fumble late in the first half caused by the Donald sack and scored on the play. In addition, he hit Mahomes on the arm leading to a critical interception by Peters late in the fourth quarter. He also had a sack in the game. By a HUGE margain, his best game as a Ram.

                              Aaron Donald was sensational, especially in the first half where he had two sack fumbles, one of which led to the ebukam touchdown and the other of which was recovered by John Franklin Myers after a mad scramble where we got lucky when the kansas city lineman could not fall on the ball that was directly in front of him.

                              Sometimes its just as important to be lucky as good. Critical play late in the fourth quarter, Rams out of timeouts. Goff makes a terrible throw that hits Skandrick in the hands and he drops it. If he makes that catch, the game is probably over and we lose. Skandrick got burned all night, but that one play probably cost kansas city the game.

                              Goff had a great night with 31-49-413 4 touchdowns throwing and one running for a qb rating of 117.1. Most importantly, after stumbling a couple of times late in the game, Goff got it done with no timeouts by driving the Rams down the field to score what proved to be the winning touchdown with under...
                              -11-19-2018, 11:20 PM
                            • general counsel
                              Rams vanquish vikings 38-31; The Good, Bad and Ugly
                              by general counsel
                              The Rams pushed their record to 4-0 for the first time since 2001, riding a near perfect performance by Jared Goff to a 38-31 playoff caliber victory over Minnesota. The Rams had 556 yards of offense, but were unable to close it out at the end and it was their defense that held on to clinch the victory. Playing on a short week and without Talib, the defensive line finally stepped up with the game on the line with Donald and Suh both playing very well and John Franklin-Myers getting the deciding sack/fumble for the only turnover of the game for either team. It was certainly high stress level for all Rams fans in the Coliseum after the Rams went 3 and out with a little over 3 minutes left in the game and Hekker getting off a lousy punt after McVay decided not to go for it on 4th and inches from his own 35 yard line. A missed 28 yard kick by Ficken and our failure to stick in the end zone after a 1st and goal at the 6 kept the game alive far too long, but the bottom line is the Rams got it done tonight against a really good opponent in a game that has to give the Rams and their fans real confidence that they truly have a legitimate chance at a special season and a real franchise quarterback for many years to come.

                              The Good

                              Goff had his best game as a pro with a perfect 158.3 passer rating on 26-33-465 and 5 touchdowns. He passed for over 250 yards and 4 td's in the first half and was perfectly on target all night. Some of the throws were really spectacular and the throw into the corner of the end zone to Kupp over two defenders was absolutely perfect. He hit receivers dead in stride all night, including TD's to Kupp for 70 yards (ok zimmer, putting a linebacker on receivers might not be such a great idea), gurley, cooks 47 yards, woods and Kupp again. He made some nice audible calls at the line, including a couple of really nice screen calls. If i want to be picky in the absolute extreme, i will say that he could still do a better job checking off when he sees a run blitz, but with the game he played tonight, there is no way any sane person can complain about him, call him a system quarterback, or second guess the draft pick. Absolutely sensational, no other way to put it.

                              Donald finally showed tonight why he gets the huge money with five tackles and two big sacks. The Rams had four sacks, one by Suh and the game winner by Myers (the fumble was recovered by Suh) in addition to the two from Donald. I thought Suh played pretty well, as did Johnson with 11 tackles, littleton with 9 and sam shields, who had a huge pass break up that saved a td. The run defense was good, 54 yards allowed on 17 carries, 20 plus of which came on one run and 10 plus of which came on a scramble by Cousins. Peters played a gutsy game, he certainly didnt look 100 percent to me but he was out there and will now have ten days to rest.

                              Gurley was excellent with 17-83 and 4-73 receiving. The offensive line was great...
                              -09-27-2018, 09:49 PM
                            • general counsel
                              Rams lampoon lions 30-16; The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
                              by general counsel
                              The Rams overcame a subpar performance by Jared Goff, pushing their record to 11-1 with a 30-16 road win against detroit by riding Todd Gurley, outstanding red zone defense, and an another otherworldly performance by Aaron Donald. The Rams win today clinched the NFC west title for the second year in a row and gave the Rams a one game lead over new orleans in the race for home field in the nfc with four games remaining. The giants win over chicago in overtime (aided by huge defense plays by former Rams Tree and Janoris) gives the Rams a three game lead over chicago in terms of the week one bye in the playoffs. Today was far from the Rams best game, but keep in mind that detroit has been strong defensively under patricia, especially of late against the run, and beat new england at home earlier in the year. The performance of the defense today was encouraging, albeit against a detroit team that is offensively challenged at the skill positions. To state the obvious, there are no style points in the NFL and the win is what counts. This was a game that could have gone either way in the fourth quarter, and once again the Rams found a way to get it done.

                              The Good

                              There are no words any longer to describe the impact that Aaron Donald is having on a weekly basis. He had two sacks today, one of which was a strip sack fumble recovered by Ebukam that was the critical play in the game when the Rams had a three point fourth quarter lead and detroit had the momentum. He had a third sack called back for a penalty. He had 5 overall tackles which included four tackles for loss. He drew three holding penalties and was held another ten or more times. I have watched 50 years of football and i have never seen an interior lineman play the way Donald is playing week in week out and while he is surrounded by other first round draft picks, he is not surrounded by other linemen who are exactly lighting it up. Just another incredible performance and he was as or more responsible for this win today as anyone.

                              Red zone play. The Rams were 3-4 in the red zone today offensively and held detroit to 1-5. The one time the Rams were stopped in the red zone, Reynolds was clearly held in the end zone on the third down play. The td pass to woods on 3rd and goal from the 8 before half gave us a 10-3 lead and was huge.

                              Todd Gurley had an excellent game with 23-132 and 2 td's rushing along with 3 catches for 33 yards. It was tough going most of the day for gurley, especially with malcolm brown out early with the shoulder injury and Gurley being the only active back on the roster. Very tough for him to get any room up the middle with snacks harrison clogging things up. He had two huge runs, the td run from the 13 with great blocking and the game clinching long run where he alertly fell down on the one yard line forcing detroit to use the rest of their time outs and putting the Rams into a position where even if they don't...
                              -12-02-2018, 05:47 PM
                            • general counsel
                              Rams stop saints 26-23 in OT; The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
                              by general counsel
                              The Rams overcame an extremely hostile road environment and rallied from behind to defeat new orleans 26-23 in overtime on a booming dead center 57 yard field goal from The Leg to advance to super bowl LIII for a super bowl xvi rematch against new england. The Rams dug themselves an early 13-0 hole with some ugly play and frankly, the score could have been a lot worse if not for some outstanding red zone defense. A fake punt completion from Hekker to Shields got the Rams moving and a sensational throw from Goff to Cooks followed by a six yard run by Gurley (one of his only five touches for the day) closed the gap to 13-10 at half. Despite going down 20-10 late in the third, the Rams rallied again with 212 yards of offense in the fourth quarter to tie the game on a 48 yard field goal by The Leg with 15 seconds left in regulation, forcing overtime. In overtime, new orleans won the toss but a qb hit by fowler forced a wobbly fly ball from brees which johnnie johnson made a sensational interception on while lying flat on his back, giving the Rams a first down at their own 45. Two sensational throws and plays by Goff, both short gains, but both critical, put the Rams close enough for the Leg to bomb in the game winner. We can now add "The Kick" to "The Catch" and "The Tackle" in Rams folklore of sensational plays. I am so incredibly proud of the resilence that the squad showed today. True, we got a huge break at the end on the non-interference call on Robey-Coleman that may well have ended our season, but if anyone wants to say that non-call in the reason new orleans lost just point out the obvious missed facemask on the Goff scramble at the goal line that cost us four points. Games don't turn on one call. There were lots of close calls and plays in this game. No class at all out of new orleans in their post game comments, but at this point, i could not care less, just looking ahead to the super bowl and our chance to avenge the darkest day in Rams history, at least since the brutal loss in the 1950 title game.

                              The Good

                              The Rams as a team never gave up, left it all out on the field and fought their hearts out. Digging a 13-0 hole in that environment and then getting down 10 again at the end of the third was a huge mountain to climb, but we never stopped fighting our hardest and we made enough plays to get it done against a really good team in just about the loudest stadium anyone could ever imagine, against a first ballot hall of fame quarterback.

                              Goff was not perfect today, he certainly missed some throws and was indecisive when he had a chance to run the ball into the end zone for the go ahead touchdown in the fourth quarter. However, with the game and the season on the line, he outplayed first ballot hall of famer brees and got the job done with some spectacular plays. The third and three scramble late in the fourth quarter that led to the 39 pass to everett was an all-pro...
                              -01-20-2019, 09:30 PM