LOS ANGELES – That magical night time towards Kansas Metropolis is one which Rams followers will always remember, which is sweet, as a result of it’s beginning to really feel extra like a interval than a comma, notably for quarterback Jared Goff.
The Rams, proper now, are damaged. The extent of exterior panic might be elevated past necessity, as a result of poor play is popping right into a development, not a blip. The Rams may be fastened, and they’ve sufficient time to do it, however there’s numerous work to be down after their principally dismal 30-23 loss to Philadelphia on Sunday on the Coliseum.
The Rams (11-Three) have misplaced consecutive regular-season video games for the primary time in two seasons underneath Coach Sean McVay and virtually definitely have misplaced their probability to declare the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoffs with two video games left till the playoffs.
“We’ve got to be able to figure this out, and figure it out fast,” McVay stated, “because these last couple weeks, we’re doing things that are totally uncharacteristic of what good football teams do, what we’ve done.”
Philadelphia (7-7), which got here in as a 13-point underdog, broke open a recreation that was tied 13-13 at halftime with 17 consecutive factors, as Goff threw a horrible second-half interception that brought about the sport to snowball.
The Rams (11-Three) tried to scramble again into it in the ultimate minutes, pulling to inside a landing on Todd Gurley’s 1-yard scoring run with four:06 to play. The Rams’ protection held Philadelphia to a three-and-out on the following possession, however JoJo Natson fumbled the ball away on a punt return, giving the Eagles the ball on the Rams’ 36.
“Fluke play. I tried to switch the ball and it came out. Fluke play,” Natson stated. “I’m just trying to make a play for the team. You know what I’m saying?”
Once more, the Rams’ protection stiffened, and Goff and the offense obtained another probability after the Eagles missed a 53-yard area aim try. The Rams took over with 1:08 to play and no timeouts, and Goff shortly acquired them down to the Eagles 18 yard line. However his cross meant in the top zone for Josh Reynolds sailed excessive and incomplete on the sport’s ultimate play.
However till these two last-ditch drives, the Rams have been clearly out of sync, particularly on offense.
“We’ve got two weeks until the playoffs,” Goff stated, “so we’ve got two weeks to figure it out. I don’t think it’s much. It’s little things here and there. I need to do a better job and we need to do a better job across the board.”
The place even to start? The Rams adopted that breathtaking victory over the Chiefs final month with a bye, and they’ve been bye-bye ever since, definitely on offense and with combined outcomes on protection.
Goff, beset by extra porous offensive-line play that he’s develop into accustomed to because the begin of 2017, appears misplaced and the receivers, who not way back dazzled with zig-zag routes everywhere in the subject, now look fairly primary. Gurley, who returned from a mid-game knee damage Sunday, not is dominating video games.
Maybe that is some extended rope-a-dope by the Rams, since they’ve already clinched the NFC West and can safe a first-round playoff bye by profitable season-ending video games vs. Arizona and San Francisco. But it positive doesn’t really feel that means for a staff that appears to have misplaced its means, and that begins with Goff.
Because the bye, Goff has appeared extra just like the tentative, battered 2016 rookie than final yr’s All-Professional participant and the MVP candidate of this season’s first two-plus months. Goff accomplished 35 of 54 makes an attempt for 239 yards, zero touchdowns and two interceptions, one week after an terrible displaying towards Chicago.
“We’ve all got to be better,” McVay stated when requested about Goff. “He’s got to make some better decisions. … He’s trying to make plays. We learn from all our mistakes, and that’s players and coaches alike, but there’s certainly some things that we can look at and we’ve got to be better. Everybody.”
Too typically, an uncomfortable-looking Goff both threw off his again foot, appeared like he was anticipating to be sacked, or each. An offensive line that has allowed an excessive amount of strain to come up the center definitely carries some duty, however for a 3rd consecutive week, the Rams seemed out of types on offense.
The worst second got here late in the third quarter, when Goff had his foot stepped on by middle John Sullivan, then tried an ill-advised, off-balance heave that was intercepted. The Eagles scored two performs later to take a 30-13 lead.
The Rams truly led the Eagles 7-Three on the finish of the primary quarter Sunday. Then they failed to rating a landing for the remainder of the sport, and their protection didn’t look notably spectacular both.
For the remainder of the sport, the Eagles – with backup quarterback Nick Foles in for Carson Wentz – carved the Rams’ protection with off-tackle runs and deep balls to wide-open receivers. Foles, final season’s Tremendous Bowl MVP, seemed like a relaxed veteran in his first begin since September and, after the sport was tied 13-13 at halftime, the Eagles scored 17 consecutive factors.
The Rams nonetheless can clinch the No. 2 seed in the NFC, and a first-round bye, with victories over Arizona and San Francisco — even when Chicago finishes 2-Zero — however for the Rams, the ultimate two video games appear to be extra about regaining their momentum.
“I think we’re in a slump right now, but it’s been worse over here,” guard Rodger Saffold stated. “Around this time last year, we had four or five losses. That’s something to think about. At the end of the day, everything is right in front of us and we still control our own destiny. We still have the playoff picture in mind.”
The Rams generated some hope late in the primary quarter once they truly scored a landing. They’d gone 14 consecutive possessions with out one, and it appeared they’d discovered a move with a Gurley-led assault.
Not a lot. Gurley had seven carries and three receptions on the Rams’ first two drives, in contrast to a complete of 14 touches final week, and the Rams held the ball for eight:55 in the primary quarter, nevertheless it didn’t final.
The Rams led 7-Three after Gurley’s 9-yard landing run with 1:16 left in the primary quarter, and then 7-6 after a pleasant red-zone stand by the protection. The Rams then marched to the Eagles’ 14, however on first down, as an alternative of giving the ball to Gurley, McVay referred to as a cross play and the Rams have been referred to as for cross interference.
After that, Goff took a sack, the Rams went nowhere and they settled for a subject objective and a 10-6 lead. The Eagles took the lead at 13-10 with a landing on their subsequent possession, and the Rams tied the sport with a area aim as time expired on the finish of the primary half.
These in search of a bounce-back recreation from Goff, who threw 4 interceptions every week earlier at Chicago, have been left ready. Goff did be a part of Jim Everett, Kurt Warner and Marc Bulger as the one Rams quarterbacks to throw for four,000 yards in a single season, however Goff not often appeared snug in the pocket.
Maybe it’s the cross rush, as groups more and more appear to be getting inside strain towards the Rams’ line. Maybe it’s the lack of receiver Cooper Kupp to a knee damage, as a result of since he went out, Goff hasn’t appeared solely snug with any goal besides Robert Woods and hasn’t proven a lot chemistry with Josh Reynolds. Maybe it’s simply good protection and some malaise after the Rams clinched a playoff spot.
FINAL: The @Eagles defeat the Rams on Sunday Night time! #FlyEaglesFly#PHIvsLAR
(by @Lexus) pic.twitter.com/3IabVIlDrE
— NFL (@NFL) December 17, 2018