clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Los Angeles Rams vs. Tennessee Titans: Report card displays a division clinch

The Rams have clinched a playoff and NFC West spot for the first time since 2003, lets take a look at the grades

Los Angeles Rams v Tennessee Titan Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images

Quarterbacks

A look at the box score stats would indicate that Jared Goff had a miraculous day, though there were multiple plays where it didn’t go as smooth. First, two fumbles give Goff a knock, albeit one was from behind on an attempted handoff. Goff also had an errant pass to Robert Woods on a screen that resulted in nothing, though it could have been worse. Now, to the positives. Goff had a beautiful dime to Cooper Kupp in the corner of the end-zone to take his first fourth quarter comeback my the horns. Not only that, but he had another dime to Kupp as well as Woods. All in all, it was a very good day in the office for Goff as he secured his first fourth quarter comeback of his career.

Running Backs

Uhh, can you say, MVP? Todd Gurley just continues to stack legendary performance after legendary performance, and the Rams ultimately rode him to victory today. On 22 carries, Gurley amassed 118 rushing yards, though that wasn’t nearly his full contributions. In the receiving game was where he did most of his damage today, with 10 receptions, 158 yards, and two touchdowns. One of those was an 80 yard screen for a TD where he was virtually un-touched. Gurley was a man possessed today, gaining chunks of yardage every time he received the rock.

Wide Receivers

With the Titans missing two of their top three corners, I suspected a bigger game from the WR group, but they still had a productive outing. Cooper Kupp per usual was the main beneficiary with a 4-65-1 line, recovering from a third down drop with a gorgeous go-ahead touchdown grab. Robert Woods was next in line with a 3-33 line, and Sammy Watkins finished it with a 3-30-1 line, mostly being involved early in the game.

Tight Ends

Like always, this group was the after-thought in the passing department. The only TE to register any stats was Tyler Higbee with two receptions for 15 yards, one of which was an absolutely beautiful back shoulder diving grab. This group was mainly involved in blocking for the run.

Offensive Line

116 total yards rushing for an average of 4.5 YPC, and Jared Goff only sacked one time for 15 yards. The major “blunder” for the unit was a running play within the Rams own 10-yard line, where Jamon Brown accidentally went the wrong way and allowed a free Jurrell Casey to blast Jared Goff from behind resulting in a fumble and scoop-and-score for the Titans. Outside of a major blunder there, the offensive line as usual played an outstanding game. Todd Gurley wasn’t even touched on his 80 yard screen that went to the house, with C John Sullivan making two key blocks on the play. Keep your eyes open on the two injuries, C John Sullivan who ultimately returned, and LG Rodger Saffold who seemed to have a side/back issue.

Defensive Line

Outside of a sack-fumble from Aaron Donald, this group wasn’t very prominent in the pass rushing department. For as much as they lacked any pass rush, the defensive line did a very solid job containing the Titans running game. The Titans only had 97 yards rushing (24 coming from Mariota), and only averaged 3.7 YPC with the QB running included. It was a great performance from a group that has been leaky versus the run all year.

Linebackers

With ILB Mark Barron sitting this contest out due to injury, replacement Cory Littleton had himself quite an eventful game. In only the first quarter alone, Littleton intercepted a pass and had a sack. After that, he was active versus the run, though he did have some trouble covering TE Delaine Walker. Alec Ogletree had two pass deflections, one of which was nearly intercepted by Trumaine Johnson. Connor Barwin and Robert Quinn, as well as the backup OLB’s, were fairly quiet.

Defensive Backs

Troy Hill was the Rams most active defender with nine registered tackles on the day. He did allow a handful of completions, some going for large gains, though he held his own, and had a great tackle on third down versus Corey Davis to force the Titans into a field goal attempt. Trumaine Johnson wasn’t targeted much at all, allowing a 25 yard reception to Rishard Matthews, and nearly intercepting a deflected pass in the Rams’ endzone. Lamarcus Joyner had six tackles, and John Johnson registered five. Johnson had a perfect hit that jarred a ball loose on a 3rd-and long.

Special Teams

Johnny Hekker had an average game, with an average of 42 yards per punt. Pharoh Cooper was completely neutralized in the game, and had a few questionable kickoff returns that would have been best served as touchbacks. The main story is newly signed K Sam Ficken, who was pretty awful. A missed extra point, a missed field goal, and a turned up opportunity for a 50 yard field goal pretty much encapsulate what his worth is right now. I’d expect the Rams to look at a new kicker this week.

Coaching

Sean McVay and the offense did enough to win the game, and with a kicker like Greg Zuerlein, they would have crossed their season average of 31 PPG. Wade Phillips stopped one of the stronger running attacks in the league, and essentially had the Titans scrap the idea of running the football. For once, coach Bones’ boys struggled, though this was suspected with pro bowl K Greg Zuerlein headed to injured reserve.