With all of the pomp and circumstance surrounding QBs in today’s NFL, Rams head coach Sean McVay is an innovator extraordinaire and while maintaining somewhat of a throwback mindest regarding the run game.
With Rams QB Jared Goff quick to get the ‘yips’ when pressured, maintaining balance on offense will be crucial for McVay. He has been prone to abandon the run at times early in his career, and he’ll have to be doubly careful with LB Khalil Mack ready to wreak havoc on the Rams.
As far as McVay is concerned, all offensive production starts with Gurley. After Jeff Fisher showed that he could bury a truly transcendent talent during Gurley’s second season, McVay arrived and promptly made Gurley the focal point of the Rams offense - taking some pressure off of Goff’s shoulders.
The Bears are holders of the 2nd best run defense in the NFL. This will be a classical case of unstoppable force vs. immovable object.
I’m looking forward to seeing how the Rams respond.
Rob Havenstein / Andrew Whitworth
In addition to having a difficult match-up in the run game, the Rams OTs will have their hands full with one of the best pass rushers in the NFL. Mack and Broncos LB Von Miller are about the only pass rushers who can hold a candle to Rams DT Aaron Donald.
It will be a team effort to block Mack, but it will ultimately fall on Whit’s and Hav’s broad shoulders to keep Goff upright Sunday night.
Fowler might still be fighting the ‘bust’ label - even after his trade to the Rams, but he has been able to make an impact in his time under Wade Phillips.
The Bears will undoubtedly devote copious resources to blocking Donald, so Fowler will see a lot of one-on-one opportunities that elite pass rushers dream of.
Will he be able to take advantage of the situation and put some pressure on Bears QB Mitchell Trubisky?
Your first reaction to this is probably along the lines of : “Really?! the punter?”
Yes, I realize Jeff Fisher isn’t the Rams coach anymore.
Yes, Hekker doesn’t punt 10 times per game anymore.
But this game could boil down to field position.
Hekker excels at pinning opposing offenses deep in their own territory. The Rams will need him at his best to keep the pressure on the Bears.