5 Keys To Victory: Revisited – Rams At Chargers


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Make the Chargers offense one-dimensional

The Rams failed spectacularly in this particular aspect after doing a great job against the Broncos’ running game last week. They allowed battered RB Ryan Matthews to rush for 105 yards and a touchdown on only 12 carries. However, the Rams defense did a good job of limiting RB Branden Oliver. He only produced 40 total yards on ten touches.

Focus on Antonio Gates in the redzone

Gates was effectively taken out of the game. He posted only two catches for 14 yards on the day. This was his worst performance since week three against the Buffalo Bills in which he only managed one catch for eight yards. Unfortunately, WR Keenan Allen broke out of his slump and picked up the slack for the Chargers offense. He finished with six catches for 104 yards and a score.

Cover the check downs and flats

Yet again Rivers utilized short passes into the flats, as he does so often under center. Oliver caught four passes for 23 yards out of the backfield, but the other two backs were limited by St. Louis. Matthews caught two passes for eight yards and RB Donald Brown had two receptions for 20 yards. The Rams contained these plays and didn’t allow any long plays to result from them.


Keep Tre Mason rolling

Mason had an average performance against San Diego. He ran 16 times for 62 yards and he also caught a pass for 26 yards. It was clear the Chargers were focused on taking him out of the game and they limited his effectiveness, forcing QB Shaun Hill to make plays with his arm. Mason now has 108 carries for 445 yards and a touchdown on the season. He gets to take on the Raiders defense next week.

Win the turnover battle

Both teams had three turnovers. Rivers threw a 99 yard pick six to CB Janoris Jenkins and Allen fumbled twice. The Rams also made a few mistakes of their own, as Hill threw two interceptions and lost a fumble. The fumble was returned for a score and his second pick happened in the end zone when the Rams had the Chargers on their heels at the goal line in the games’ final minute.

Check back with us next week before the Rams take on the Oakland Raiders to see our keys to victory.