Last week’s division matchup against the San Francisco Rams did not go the way McVay and Co. thought it would go. Goff and the offense could not get much going, and the defense couldn’t shutdown Garoppolo. Los Angeles will look to bounce back this week, but it won’t get any easier against a formidable Chicago defense.
We’ve broken down three keys that could lead to the Rams getting right back into the win column.
3. Whose Pass Defense will Shine Brighter?
Both teams sport two of the top pass defenses in the league. The Bears come into this week’s matchup having only allowed a 57.1% completion rate to opposing quarterbacks, which ranks first in the league, as well as 6.5 yards per attempt (2nd in the league). The Rams on the other hand have allowed only 209.5 yards per game through the air which is 4th overall. So while both are well suited to shut down each other’s opposing quarterback, the one who shines the brightest may come out on top.
— uSTADIUM (@uSTADIUM) October 18, 2020
Los Angeles is coming off their poorest showing this season after allowing Garoppolo to throw for 268 yards and 3 touchdowns. However, Chicago’s quarterback, Nick Foles, had a pedestrian week as he threw for 198 yards and 2 touchdowns and an interception against a solid Carolina defense. The Rams have performed better this season than Carolina, so if they can revert back to what’s made them successful so far this year, they have a good chance of coming out with the win.
2. Stick with Henderson
Since piling up yardage through the air is going to be a challenge, the key for the Rams will be the backfield. So far the rotating backfield has had its shining moments, but the Rams should rely heavily on Darrell Henderson. The second-year player has thrived this season despite teams loading the box against him. He’s coming off of a 88 rushing yard performance on 14 carries.
So far on the season, Henderson has rushed 72 times for 348 yards and 3 touchdowns. The Bears, like the Rams, have struggled to contain the run game this season. Through 6 games they have allowed 678 rushing yards (113.0 per game). McVay usually rides with the hottest hand, so if he continues that trend, then Henderson should be in line for another productive week.
1. Field Goals for the Win
If both defenses show up, this very well could be a low scoring affair with both teams scrambling for points. The Bears and Rams may have to turn to their respective kickers often. However, that may not be great news to hear for Rams fans who have quickly turned on kicker Samuel Sloman.
He’s already missed 2 field goal attempts as well as 3 extra points in 6 games. The Rams made a move Tuesday and signed journeyman Kai Forbath off of, well what do you know, Chicago’s practice squad. McVay has expressed that Sloman needs to improve and having Forbath proves the team’s patience with him is running low. Whether it be Sloman or Forbath, the Rams will need every point this week in a tough defensive matchup.
Chicago Bears @ Los Angeles Rams
Monday, October 26th, @ 5:15 PM on ESPN