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Rams-49ers INSTANT REACTION: 45-1

Despite some great Rams performances, Sean McVay has no answers for Kyle Shanahan in second half

San Francisco 49ers v Los Angeles Rams Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images

When Sean McVay’s “45-0 when leading at halftime” graphic came up on the Fox broadcast on Sunday, my first thought was about how many times that record has been mentioned up until now; then I considered that surely the streak would eventually come to an end; but then thought that people probably wonder this every time the graphic comes onto the screen and that today wouldn’t be the day that McVay lost a game when leading at halftime.

The Rams led 17-0 and the 49ers had only gained 22 yards of offense prior to their final drive before the half. Then San Francisco cut it to 17-3 and tied the score in the third quarter, but following one of the best “juggle plays” in NFL history by Jalen Ramsey and a heroic effort by Cooper Kupp in the fourth, it again seemed certain that McVay would win when leading at halftime.

But the 49ers moved down the field to force overtime and then ran down more than seven minutes of the clock when getting the ball to start the extra period. There were plenty of good things that happened on Sunday — The Los Angeles Rams won the NFC West, Matthew Stafford added three more touchdowns to his history of touchdowns, Cooper Kupp had another 100-yard effort, and they will be hosting the Arizona Cardinals in the playoffs next week — and yet this somehow felt like the Rams’ first real “playoff game” of 2022.

In this week’s Instant Reaction podcast, Blane Dydasco and I cover the good and the bad of the game, then preview the Cardinals.

The Good

Win NFC West, not that far off from top record in NFL

Cooper Kupp (7/118) is still great, and Jalen Ramsey, Von Miller, Tyler Higbee

In good shape with health

The Bad

Didn’t lose to the right teams or beat the right teams

Matthew Stafford’s turnovers

Secondary