LA Rams are discovering that 2-1 can be better than 3-0

(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /

LA Rams fans learning that their 2020 record of 2-1 can be better than their 2019 record of 3-0

Wins and losses mean quite a bit in the NFL.  The LA Rams know that first hand.  After all, it was the 9-7 record from 2019 that ultimately determined that the LA Rams were not going to the NFL Playoffs. When you play in the NFC West division, you need to be very good to win the division crown. The San Francisco 49ers were 13-3 last year. The Seattle Seahawks were 11-5 last year. The only path to the playoffs for the Rams left was the last wild card spot, which was awarded to the 10-6 Vikings last year.

But this year feels a bit different, right? I mean, the Rams are not 3-0. This team is 2-1. But the team’s offense seems far more capable this year than 2019. And while the Rams defense is still learning its schemes, the team has managed to play three very capable offensive powerhouses so far. So things are only going to get brighter on that front, right?

A better place?

And so, I am feeling much better about this 2-1 team than I felt about the 3-0 2019 start.  To be honest, I can see the LA Rams boasting a  7-1 or 6-2 record by the time they get to the bye week. The Rams will have played five road games, three home games, and only one division game.

In 2019, they entered the bye week battered and bruised and possessed a record of 5-3. But the season felt labored. That is not the way it seems in 2020.

Right now, the LA Rams offense seems to be firing on all cylinders. And while the Rams defense works out the bugs over communication and coordination, they have done a fairly solid job of keeping three running backs  Ezekiel Elliott, Miles Sanders, and Devin Singletary in check.

What is the Rams’ next challenge?

The LA Rams enter their first NFL game as the odds-on favorite as they host the visiting New York Giants. On paper, this should be a decisive win for the Rams. The Giants rushing attack has struggled this year, and they are without star running back Saquon Barkley. They do have a passing attack worth monitoring, particularly as they have spread the ball around to 11 different receivers so far this year. For comparison purposes, the LA Rams have only used nine different receivers in their passing attack.

The Rams then travel back east to face the one win Washington Football team.  While that could be a challenge, offensive coordinator Kevin O’ Connell knows quarterback Dwayne Haskins intimately and should be able to help the defense frustrate him all day.  And with facing two offenses that are struggling at a rushing offense, the Rams defense should be able to tighten up their production.

A better 2-1 record than first glance

The LA Rams emerged with a record of 2-1 after facing three teams originally projected to compete in the 2020 NFL Playoffs. The Rams face six more games against playoff-caliber teams.  If the Rams can win two of three against playoff teams, and defeat non-playoff teams, the Rams could end the season at 13-3.  Can the Rams pull that type of a season off? Well, we had predicted such a season for the Rams this year. Of course, the Rams do not yet know just how good their competition has been.

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Be that as it may, we know that the Rams should be 4-1 by the time that the Rams travel to face the 49ers. Should the team win that game, the Rams need to travel east one more time.  The Rams offense is surprisingly adept already. And with two games to work out the bugs before the 49ers games, I am confident that the defense will be much improved.  As long as the Rams get healthier as the season goes along, this is a dangerous team that can certainly do something that the 2019 version could not.

Earn a playoff berth.