Last Sunday was a disaster for the Rams as they lost to the San Francisco 49ers for the second time this season. However, this week Los Angeles has a showdown in the desert with the Arizona Cardinals (6-5). The good news for the Rams is that during the Sean McVay era, they are 6-0 against the Cardinals.
While they will certainly try and make it 7-0, we’ve broken down three keys that could go a long way in ensuring that happens.
3. Eliminate the run game
The Cardinals have been very productive on the ground this season. They’ve averaged 155.9 rushing yards per game (4th) and 5.0 yards per carry (2nd). With a backfield held down by Kenyan Drake and Chase Edmonds, the Rams will have their hands full. We also can’t forget about Kyler Murray who is a threat with his legs as well. Keeping him in the pocket will be crucial.
Kyler Murray is just ridiculous 🤭
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) November 15, 2020
The Rams on the other hand have allowed only 93.2 rushing yards per game. If the defense contains the run, then it’ll have a trickle-down effect on the offense as a whole. With Jalen Ramsey slated to matchup opposite of Deandre Hopkins and the Rams pass defense arguably the toughest this year, the Cardinals could struggle to get anything going for them.
2. Open up the field
The Rams can’t solely count on Jared Goff to lead the offense, not without an explosive run game. Lately, Sean McVay hasn’t been depending on his running backs like he used to. That’s led to Jared Goff being constantly under pressure which has yielded some not so promising results. He’s given up 10 turnovers in the last 4 games alone.
WHAT. A. RUN.
— Los Angeles Rams (@RamsNFL) November 29, 2020
While the Cardinals’ defense isn’t on the same level as the Rams’, they shouldn’t be ignored. Their pass rush is ranked 9th in sacks with 28 and also has 65 QB hits. Opening up the field with a great run/pass mixture would allow for Goff to have a bounce-back performance. The defense has been doing its job, now it’s time for Goff to do his.
1. Win in the Red Zone
If the Rams do end up limiting the pressure on Goff, then that’ll only be half of the battle. The Cardinals have been very good at preventing teams from scoring in the red zone. On the year they have allowed teams to score 52.6% of the time once they reached the Red Zone (5th).
Cam Akers seals the drive with his first rushing TD! The Rams are back on top, 20-17 #RamsHouse
— ESPN Los Angeles (@ESPNLosAngeles) November 29, 2020
Los Angeles counters with some success of their own. In fact, they have scored 66.7% of the time while in the Red Zone. (11th). With so many weapons on offense, there’s no excuse not to score.
Los Angeles Rams @ Arizona Cardinals
Sunday, December 6th, @1:05 PM on Fox