I’m going to do the power rankings with a slight twist: ranking the power rankings based on how much I agree with what they say about the LA Rams. In the aftermath of the Los Angeles Rams dreadful 28-16 home loss to the Tennessee Titans, fans are curious to know how far the team has fallen in the national power rankings.
Power rankings are a great way to measure the national media’s reaction to any particular team. However, they don’t always tell the full story but I suppose it’s my job to sort through it (how lucky for you). Shall we go ahead and start going through this nonsense?
5.) Sports Illustrated
Rams Placement: No. 3
“The Von Miller trade likely pushes the Rams over the edge. By design, this is a roster meant to win immediately and consistently. The Matt Stafford trade has been every bit the revelation we thought it could be, despite a sloppy, uncharacteristic performance on Sunday against the Titans. We’ll look at this as an outlier for sure and we’ll more than likely see this Rams team hosting a Super Bowl.” per MMQB staff at Sports Illustrated
This was far too generous of a ranking by SI. There should be no way that the Rams should be placed ahead of the team that is ahead of them in the standings. Arizona not only holds the tiebreaker over LA, but they were able to obliterate a Titans team that had Derrick Henry to open the season. I didn’t agree with the teams placed ahead of the Rams either. Tom Brady and the Bucs were rewarded the top spot despite going into their bye week with a loss to the Saints. (By the way, the Rams have a half-game lead on the Bucs in terms of playoff standings and hold the tiebreaker thanks to a week four win.) Green Bay was slotted in the second spot even though they lost a close battle in Kansas City. However, I do agree that the Von Miller trade will help push the team over the top. I also agree that the team’s loss to Tennessee will be an outlier in the end when looking back at the season. Regardless, I’m not sure who exactly ranks the teams at SI but they might need to get their heads checked after.
4.) Bleacher Report
Rams Placement: No. 3
“The Titans thumped the Rams in a game that wasn’t as close as the final score. The Rams dominated most statistical categories, including outgaining the Titans by 153 yards. But Tennessee took full advantage of two Matthew Stafford interceptions, building a 21-3 halftime lead and never looking back.
The loss drops the Rams a game back of the NFC West-leading Cardinals (with a head-to-head loss to the Redbirds). And with two NFC West games (including a rematch with Arizona) and a trip to Green Bay looming over the next four games, Stafford and Co. need to shake off this loss and tighten things up before the division gets away from them.” per NFL Staff at Bleacher Report
I agree with the notion that the Rams need to tighten up with a few tough matchups on the horizon which includes a rematch with the Cardinals and a playoff rematch with the Packers at Lambeau Field. Much like the SI rankings, I believe having LA at number three is much too high of a ranking for this team right now.
Rams Placement: No. 4
“Rams receivers were bound for a big season with the offseason addition of quarterback Matthew Stafford, but few could have predicted that fifth-year receiver Cooper Kupp would lead the NFL with 1,019 receiving yards and 10 receiving touchdowns at this point of the season. Kupp is Stafford’s go-to target and has continued to prove not only that he can tack on yards after the catch but also that he has the ability to get wide-open for intermediate and deep completions. With Kupp’s Week 9 performance, which included 11 catches for 95 yards, he became only the fourth player in NFL history — the first since Jerry Rice — to tally 1,000 receiving yards and 10 receiving touchdowns in his team’s first nine games of a season.” per Lindsey Thiry of ESPN
In this edition of ESPN’s power rankings, team reporters were asked to make a bold second-half prediction about each of their respective teams. Thiry predicted that Cooper Kupp would win NFL Offensive Player of the Year. Anytime that a player is mentioned in the same breath as Hall of Famer Jerry Rice, they’re probably having quite the special season and that is definitely the case with Kupp. The odds of Kupp getting the award is pretty slim as it typically goes to either a running back or the quarterback who doesn’t win MVP. In fact, Jerry Rice and Michael Thomas are the only two pass catchers to ever win the award so Kupp has the odds stacked against him. I wouldn’t rule it out especially if he continues his monstrous 2021 tear.
Rams Placement: No. 7
“Sometimes you just don’t have it. Better in November than January, right? The Rams were an undisciplined mess on Sunday Night Football, committing a season-high 12 penalties for 115 yards in a 28-16 loss to the surging Titans at Hollywood Park. An extremely suspect roughing-the-passer call on Aaron Donald was the nail in the coffin for L.A., but Sean McVay’s team never seriously threatened once the Titans reeled off 21 points in the second quarter — 14 of them coming off Matthew Stafford interceptions, including a killer pick-six by Kevin Byard. An ugly performance, no doubt, but even great teams can deliver a dud during a long season. The Rams hope this was it.” per Dan Hanzus of NFL.com
This was a ranking that was more reflective of the Rams’ performance on Sunday night. They were an undisciplined shiitake show and Stafford made the worst mistakes of all. I will say that the Rams are still a great team even after the loss. There is absolutely no need to hit the panic button yet as long as they venture back onto the winning path. If they don’t, then hit the panic button but this is the right spot for them at this time.
1.) Yahoo Sports
Rams Placement: No. 3
“The Los Angeles Rams have a quality win. They looked very good against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 3. So we can’t say the Rams haven’t beaten anybody. They just haven’t beaten anybody else, and the two other good teams the Rams played embarrassed them.
Sunday proved, yet again, that almost every NFL team is going to look bad a few times per season. The league is competitive and even good teams can get beat any week. Parity is not just a buzzword. A terrible loss doesn’t mean a team is bad. It just reminds us to never fully trust any NFL team. They’re all flawed.” per Frank Schwab of Yahoo Sports
I know how hypocritical I’m going to appear by ranking an outlet that ranked the Rams so high number one. The NFL ranking of the team was far more accurate, but Schwab hit the nail right on the head. No one can say LA hasn’t beaten anyone, they clearly have in the Bucs, but have faltered badly in the two other matchups against quality teams. I suppose we as fans should trust no team as a team can lose on any given week. I mean the Jaguars beat a Super Bowl contender in the Bills this weekend, anything’s possible. Hide your clubs Jacksonville...Urban is coming.