3 surprise discoveries revealed during the LA Rams opening win

Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports /
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LA Rams News
Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports /

Okay. It’s that morning after, the Monday after football Sunday where we ponder about the football game. Perhaps you are asking yourself – what did we just see? Perhaps you are trying to tap the brakes today after an overly euphoric season opener.  Maybe you see the LA Rams in a much more favorable light today?  Perhaps you’ve talked yourself out of the warm fuzzy feeling, convincing yourself that the team was not as brilliant in the aftermath as the team appeared to be in the heat of the battle.

Wherever your emotional mixture has come to rest this Monday morning after, we’re glad that you are here. That 2021 NFL season opener was about as good of a performance that could have been expected. In many ways, this was the perfect test for the LA Rams to start the NFL season. The Chicago Bears offered a historically stingy defense and a balanced offense that had a star receiver in Allen Robinson and a star rusher in David Montgomery.

The LA Rams face three 2020 NFL Playoffs teams as their first three September opponents. But the greatest challenge, at least from head coach Sean McVay’s standpoint, was the Chicago Bears. It was the Bears that first shut down the McVay offense at its peak, holding the 2018 Rams to just six points. That amazing performance became the foundation for their Super Bowl loss, and that became the foundation for the offensive struggles ever since.

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But the Rams offense didn’t struggle in this one.

In this opener, the Rams didn’t play particularly good defense against the run. The Rams offense didn’t run particularly well. Special teams were clearly a work in process, as the Bears’ Khalil Herbert returned four kickoffs for 106 yards. But punt coverage did well, allowing just a three-yard return on a 50-yard punt off the foot of Johnny Hekker.