The Los Angeles Rams had a bye in Week 7, but that doesn’t mean that they weren’t impacted by what happened in the NFL on Sunday. There are plenty of places you can find full game recaps, this is just a report on how each game effected the Rams.
Cardinals 42, Saints 34 (TNF)
The Rams play the Cardinals in Week 10 and the Saints in Week 11. Arizona improved to 3-4, keeping pace with the NFC West. Former Ram Greg Dortch started the season hot but has mostly disappeared from the offense and DeAndre Hopkins returned this week.
Ravens 23, Browns 20
The chances of Lamar Jackson being traded next year (potentially an NFC team) still look very slim. But after a hot start, Jackson hasn’t been as productive in the last four games. John Johnson had a tackle for a loss for the 2-5 Browns.
Panthers 21, Bucs 3
Stunning. The Rams have a better chance in the NFC than maybe expected as Tom Brady falls to 3-4. Carolina rebounds from a Rams loss to beat Tampa Bay. The Panthers are only one game out of first place and might decide to keep their best players rather than sell. Cory Littleton had a batted pass for the Panthers.
Bengals 35, Falcons 17
The Falcons had won three of four since losing to the Rams. Atlanta is still tied for first place in the NFC South at 3-4. Cincinnati had been “the other Super Bowl team that is struggling” but now the Bengals have won four of their last five games.
Cowboys 24, Lions 6
The NFC East has the early lead on two of three wild card spots in the NFC, as Dallas is now 5-2. In that context, including L.A.’s earlier loss to the Cowboys, it means the Rams could need to win the division to make the playoffs, even if there isn’t a winning team in the NFC South. But this is not even the midway point of the season quite yet and some of these records today will turn over in the future. Every year around this time I usually go back and research best records from last year (Cardinals were 7-0) but it’s so consistently the case, what’s the point? I can guarantee that every year some hot team will be bad and some bad team will get hot at the right time.
Anyway, Jared Goff went 21/26 for 228 yards but threw two interceptions and was sacked five times. The Lions are 1-5 and probably see a “top-ranked quarterback” at the end of the tunnel by now.
Giants 23, Jaguars 17
At 6-1, New York now holds the top wild card position in the NFC. Is it an illusion? I don’t think anybody would want to face the Giants in a playoff game win-or-go-home scenario right now, so it’s real enough.
Titans 19, Colts 10
Robert Woods had three catches for 26 yards. Woods has 20 catches for 230 yards and one touchdown over six games.
Commanders 23, Packers 21
The Packers are 3-4. Washington is also 3-4 and in last place in the NFC East, but the only other NFC teams with a better record are the Vikings and Seahawks. I had given some praise to former Rams coach Joe Barry for his Green Bay defense earlier in the year. But now I would have to say they’ve been underwhelming given the personnel.
Jets 16, Broncos 9
The Broncos are sending their first and second round picks to the Seahawks, with the first of those currently slated at sixth overall. Denver is 2-5 and Russell Wilson missed this game. The Rams play the Broncos on Christmas Day. The Jets are 5-2 but lost star rookie running back Breece Hall to a torn ACL, so the Rams won’t be the only team searching for a running back. LaMarcus Joyner had an interception for the Jets. Greg Zeurlein made all of his kicks.
Raiders 38, Texans 20
The Rams play the Raiders, now 2-4, on Thursday Night Football in Week 14. Brandin Cooks had four catches for 46 yards for Houston. The Texans would be slated to pick second in the draft, after the Lions. I reckon both of those picks would be used on quarterbacks.
Seahawks 37, Chargers 23
Seattle is in first place in the NFC West at 4-3. Offensive coordinator Shane Waldron, a former Rams assistant, could be getting head coaching interviews after this season. Another former assistant, Brandon Staley, seems to be another person getting an “Aaron Donald boost” to his career. The Chargers defense has not been vaunted, though they’ve dealt with some injuries. The Rams play the Seahawks in Weeks 13 and 18, and the Chargers in Week 17.
Morgan Fox had a sack, Sebastian Joseph-Day had a tackle for a loss for the Chargers.
Chiefs 44, 49ers 23
San Francisco’s defense didn’t seem so stout against Patrick Mahomes. The 49ers fell to 3-4 and face the Rams next week. Brock Purdy made an appearance at quarterback for San Francisco. Christian McCaffrey made his 49ers debut and had eight carries for 38 yards with 24 receiving yards. The winner of Rams-49ers will at worst be in striking distance of first place. The loser, especially of the Rams get swept by San Francisco, will be looking up at least two other teams in the division. Maybe all three. Important game.
The game mostly lacked having an impact on the Rams, which would be my biggest criticism of it.