The Los Angeles Rams lost in disappointing fashion on Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals. After losing 37-20 to a division opponent at home, there are always going to be overreactions. Here are the top-5.
1. Matthew Stafford is Who We Thought He Was
There are some who were down on Matthew Stafford before he came to the Los Angeles Rams. He was someone who could never win the big game and the narrative that he had bad teams in Detroit was overblown. However, Stafford proved last week that he could win the big game.
It’s hard to fathom how you watch yesterday’s game in which the defense allowed touchdowns at will and blame Matthew Stafford. Stafford didn’t have his best game, but he had a passer-rating of 89.5. In games in which Goff had a 89.5 passer rating or better under Sean McVay, the Rams were 32-3. In games in which Goff had a 50.2 QBR or better, the Rams were 31-6.
2. The Los Angeles Rams Defense Is Bad and Raheem Morris is in Over His Head.
Raheem Morris hasn't had a defense rank in the top-10 in points allowed since 2010 and has never had a defense rank better than 17th in yards allowed.
Might be a good time to remind you of that.
— Sosa Kremenjas (@QBsMVP) October 3, 2021
This isn’t to call out Sosa or anything. It’s just a very misleading stat. Raheem Morris has spent exactly one year as a defensive coordinator in his career in the NFL. In that one year, the Falcons defense ranked 14th on DVOA despite finishing 4-12.
We currently have a four-game sample of the Los Angeles Rams defense. In games 1-3, they allowed 20 points just once and that came in garbage time against the Buccaneers. We’ll learn more about this season as we get more of a sample. However, as it stands, Sunday seems to be the anomaly.
3. The Cardinals Will Win The NFC West
It’s Week 4. The season isn’t won or lost in Week 4.
Coming up, the Cardinals have the Packers, Browns, and 49ers in three of the next four weeks. Not to mention, the Rams will get another crack at the Cardinals later in the season. Arizona looked good, but they also started 5-2 last season before missing the playoffs.
This Cardinals team looks different, but how do they handle success?
4. The Los Angeles Rams Miss John Johnson III and Other Free Agents
It’s very easy to look at the starters that the Los Angeles Rams lost in free agency and say that those players are missed. Yes, John Johnson III, Michael Brockers, and Troy Hill were good players for the Rams. However, those players were replaceable. Johnson III is the 118th graded safety right now on Pro Football Focus. He ranks 121st in coverage.
Troy Hill is the 70th graded cornerback in coverage and 35th overall cornerback via Pro Football Focus. Hill has allowed eight receptions on 15 targets this season. Brockers is the 123rd ranked defensive lineman. These guys aren’t necessarily lighting it up on their new teams.
Some of the guys like David Long and Taylor Rapp aren’t playing much better than those players. However, give them time and they could improve as the year goes on.
5. The Rams Super Bowl Hopes Are Lost
You don’t win the Super Bowl in Week 4. In most years, the team hot in Week 4, isn’t the team that’s hot when Week 18 and the playoffs come around. The Buccaneers lost 20-19 to the Bears last year in Week 5. The Chiefs lost 19-13 to a 7-9 Colts team in 2019.
The Los Angeles Rams were considered the best team in the NFL exactly one week ago. One loss will not define them. If the Rams bounce back against the Seahawks on a short week, they are right back on track. Most fans had the Rams going 3-1 in the opening four games. Many thought the loss would come to the Buccaneers, but it came against the Cardinals. The Rams are on track and they just need to fix the error and stay the course.