2019 NFL Power Rankings Summary - Week 2
|Average ranking (# of rankings)||4.25 (8)|
|Average change from last week||0.50|
|Highest ranking (source)||2nd (multiple sources)|
|Lowest ranking (source)||9th (USA Today)|
|Biggest positive change (source)||+2 (multiple sources)|
|Biggest negative change (source)||-1 (multiple sources)|
Rookie who flashed: Taylor Rapp, S
How the newcomer starred: The versatility of the second-round pick was on display throughout the 32 snaps (48%) he played on defense. Before the game, defensive coordinator Wade Phillips said Rapp would not be used only as a backup and noted his “short-area quickness” and tackling ability. Against the Panthers, Rapp took the field often as a third safety, alongside John Johnson III and Marqui Christian (Eric Weddle left the game due to injury) and lined up in multiple spots. He finished with three tackles.
A very nice start for the Rams, who picked up a road win against a tough Panthers team on an afternoon where quarterback Jared Goff was not overly sharp, their special teams were uncharacteristically sloppy and defensive tackle Aaron Donald had perhaps the quietest day of his career. Their heroes came elsewhere. Rams linebacker Cory Littleton stuffed the stat sheet with 14 tackles, an interception and forced fumble, which he recovered. (The fumble came on one of those plays where the defender straight up punches the pigskin out of the ball-carrier’s hands, always an underrated feat of savagery on the field.) Todd Gurley was part of a committee attack in the backfield, but still rushed for nearly 100 yards on 14 carries and iced the game with a pair of rushes coming out of the two-minute warning. This was a win that showed off Los Angeles’ enviable depth. The Rams have a lot of people who can beat you.
Winning on the road to open the season against a good Carolina team says the Super Bowl hangover won’t be an issue. Getting Todd Gurley going in the second half was big.
There weren’t a lot of big plays in the Rams’ passing attack. Jared Goff averaged less than 5 yards per attempt. L.A. had some issues passing late last season, so it’s worth keeping an eye on.
Pro Football Talk: 5th (7th)
It wasn’t pretty, but a win in Carolina is still a pretty big deal.
USA Today: 9th (11th)
Quite a start by LBs, Dante Fowler and Clay Matthews combining for three sacks while Cory Littleton tied for league lead with 14 tackles.
They weren’t quite the clockwork offense of midseason 2018, but a road win against a tough conference rival is nothing to sneeze at.
The Athletic: 5th (4th)
One game isn’t enough of a sample size to make a definitive declaration about Todd Gurley, other than to say in his 14 carries Sunday against the Panthers, he was effective. In the fourth quarter, he was fantastic. That might not be enough for fantasy players who want Gurley to be a bell-cow back, but the reality is if he can churn out 97 yards on those 19 carries and Malcolm Brown can contribute 11 effective carries of his own, Sean McVay will be happy.