Stepping away from the LA Rams perspective, and taking on the view for the NFL as a whole, is not an easy task. What is good for the NFL as a whole, may not be good for one NFL team. And what may be good for the Rams may not be good for the NFL. But a victory by the LA Rams in Week 14 is good for both.
Right now, the Arizona Cardinals have the equivalent of a three-game lead on the LA Rams in the NFC West Division, with just five games remaining. If the Cardinals win on Monday Night Football, well that all but seals their claim to the NFC West Championship. A win will give them another week of leading both the Green Bay Packers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers and a two-game lead on the Dallas Cowboys. Of course if the Rams win out, and the Cardinals lose out, the Rams could claim the NFC West, but that is a very faint possibility.
Ho hum. Same ole, same ole.
But a loss to the Rams and suddenly the NFC first-seed could plummet to the third seed. That’s a change in playoff seeding, and that is great for television ratings.
NFC teams benefit from a Rams win
Suddenly, the Green Bay Packers at the Baltimore Ravens have huge significance in terms of playoff seeding. So too does the New Orleans Saints, a team with uncanny mastery in the NFC South Division, versus the Buccaneers. Suddenly, the Cardinals face two teams that could beat them in the Indianapolis Colts and the Dallas Cowboys.
But best of all, the LA Rams have a chance, however remote, to play a very meaningful game on Week 18 against the San Francisco 49ers. Not just for wild card seeding, but perhaps for the say as to whether the Rams represent the NFC West Division.
Of course, the odds are against it. The Arizona Cardinals are the home favorite, are the best team in the NFL, and have the benefit of home-field advantage. But a win by the LA Rams would make things far more interesting. And for the NFL as a whole, interesting is a fun direction to take.