The Arizona Cardinals are a legitimate threat in the NFC and the Los Angeles Rams are learning about their weaknesses and how to keep momentum from week to week over the long haul. This is part of what we learned after the Cardinals beat the Rams 37-20 on Sunday at SoFi Stadium. It was not a good day for the Rams as the Cards controlled the game for all four quarters thanks in part to the porous LA defense and misfires on offense. But there were some positive takeaways for the Rams and here are three.
THE OFFENSIVE LINE
In this matchup, the offensive line’s assignment was to protect Matthew Stafford against five time pro bowler JJ Watt and Chandler Jones who recorded five sacks in a single game in week one. To that end, the Rams offensive line gave up zero sacks in the game and provided Matthew Stafford enough time to make reads and get off clean releases. The blockers up front also created good push to facilitate an effective running attack. The Rams finished with a total of 121 yards rushing and Darrell Henderson Jr had a 6.4 yard average per attempt.
DARRELL HENDERSON JR
Returning from injury, Henderson looked good while running the ball up the middle and off the edges. He had a total of 89 yards on 14 attempts for a 6.4 yard average and a longest run of 15 yards. He also had five catches for 27 yards. Wish we could say the same for the running backs as a group but as for Henderson, he gave up no fumbles during the game. It seems like at some point the run game was a focal point of the game plan and given the production it can be viewed as a strength at this point.
This game won’t go down as the Rams better passing games but Jefferson was able to make of it one of his better games as he grabbed six catches on six targets for 90 yards and a touchdown. With his dad on the other sideline working as the Cardinals receiver coach, Jefferson is showing growth in his second year and continues to show up as an integrated target for Stafford.
And now for today’s links:
Game Recap: Rams fall to Cardinals 37-20 (Rams.com)
LA Rams humbled by Arizona Cardinals at SoFi Stadium (RamblinFan)