Defense watching: Trying to spot an effective LA Rams defense

Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /
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LA Rams Defense
Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /

Defensive gems

When the LA Rams faced the Buffalo Bills, wide receiver Stefon Diggs averaged eight receptions per game, and 120 yards receiving. When he faced the Rams, he caught just four of six passes for 49 yards. The next game, he was back to old form, as he hauled in six of seven passes for 115 yards. And yet, the Rams gave up 311 yards passing.  Good or bad defense? The fact is that the Rams used Jalen Ramsey against Diggs for much of the game.

So too did the Bills love to throw the ball to wide receiver John Brown. In fact, he averages five catches and 65 yards in games not facing the LA Rams. But against LA, he did not catch a single pass. So as we assess the Rams porous pass defense in the Bills game, not all parts to the defense are homogenous.

Trending. LA Rams punch list after first four games of 2020 NFL season. light

Stopping best-opposing receivers

The Rams have been holding the best receivers  The Rams held Cowboys Amari Cooper to 81 yards, lower than his 100 yards average so far this year. The Rams held Eagles TE Dallas Goedert to just 30 yards after he racked up over 100 yards the previous week.  And the Rams held Giants receiver Darius Slayton to 48 yards, below his average of 59 yards per game.

Of course, we touched base on the Rams shutting down the Bills top two high-octane receivers. And the ability of the Rams defense to neutralize the most dangerous weapons of opposing offense is something that should not be ignored or glorified. Great receivers will still get catches. Offenses will change the way they line up players to force the Rams to cover with other defensive backs. The Rams are strong at stopping top receivers so far.