Three areas that Rams must improve


In week 2 of the NFL regular season, the St Louis Rams traveled to FedEx Field to face the Washington Redskins, where the Rams fell short in their attempt to begin their season with a 2-0 record. Following a fine performance in St Louis against the reigning NFC champion Seattle Seahawks, the Rams followed up with a sub-par performance. Here are three focus points which lead to the downfall of the Rams on Sunday.

More from Rams News

To begin, the offensive line was bullied at the line of scrimmage on offense and defense, which was surprising, given last week’s performance. The offensive line struggled to create safe lanes for running back Tre Mason to run through, with Mason averaging 3.7 yards per carry.

The offensive line continually collapsed on the run play, making Rams’ offensive plays highly inefficient. The Reskins’ defensive front pushed the pocket in close to Foles regularly, putting the quarterback under pressure. The defensive front in St Louis was not at it’s best either, allowing rookie running back Matt Jones to average an impressive 6.7 yards per carry, and giving quarterback Kirk Cousins too much time with the ball.

Another aspect which contributed to this loss is the amount of errors that were committed by players on both the defensive and offensive side. As Rams fans may recall, penalties have been a massive downfall for this team in the recent years, and evidently, continue to serve as a demon for the team.

Sep 20, 2015; Landover, MD, USA; St. Louis Rams quarterback Nick Foles (5) attempts a pass against the Washington Redskins during the second half at FedEx Field. The Washington Redskins won 24 – 10. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Whether the Rams were called for holding, face mask, false start or other penalties alike, it eventually killed the offensive momentum, as the game slipped away. An example of these careless errors is Isaiah Pead’s infringement, as he was penalized for running out of bounds as a gunner on a punt play, and although the punishment of this penalty was not colossal, these are penalties that are simply not up to standard if St Louis is to build a winning record this season.

A last point of observation is Nick Foles’ inaccuracy on the pass play. As the pocket closed in on Foles, he seemed to struggled in his decision making, and when he did make the right play, the pass was often over or under thrown to the receiver. There were ample amount of plays that many would expect to result in a completion, which in this game was often not the case. Foles completed a mere 17 of 32 attempts, resulting in offensive gridlock for the Rams.

“St Louis continued to pile the pressure on them selves as the penalties consistently pushed the Rams back into a second and 20 or third and 30 play, making it difficult to gain any sort of momentum”

In commenting on the poor performance displayed by the Rams, it must be acknowledged that the Redskins played exceptional, with running back Matt Jones’ 123 rushing yards and Kirk Cousins’ 85 percent completion percentage.
Rams’ fans have seen what Foles is capable of, and on Sunday he was not representative of that. If the Rams are to stand any chance against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 3, the offensive line must maintain its composure and must limit the errors. It is also essential to recognise that Le’Veon Bell is set to return to action next week, and the defensive line must find a way to contain this talented running back, along with lethal wide receiver Antonio Brown.