5. Indianapolis Colts, Week 1
Normally, a matchup against the Indianapolis Colts wouldn’t seem like a big deal, but the main reason for this game making the list is due to the fact this will be Sean McVay‘s first official regular season as head coach for the Los Angeles Rams. For McVay, the Rams opening the 2017 season at home in front of their own fans will hopefully take some of the pressure off the new coach, and be an early test for the Wade Phillips‘ defense.
When healthy, Andrew Luck has proven to be one of the most dangerous quarterbacks in the NFL throughout his career. And with the Colts missing out on the playoffs in each of the last two seasons, chances are the former Stanford star is motivated more than ever to make sure Indianapolis returns to being playoff contenders in the AFC.
If Los Angeles is going to have any chance at defeating Indianapolis in this one, the defense is going to need to apply as much pressure to Luck as possible to make life difficult for the quarterback on offense. But then again, a strong defensive performance will be meaningless if Jared Goff and the offense can’t come through on their end, which is why it’s important for the Rams to start off the year on a high note against the Colts.