The LA Rams know what 49ers will do. Now, can they stop them?

Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports /
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LA Rams News
Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports /

The LA Rams have been beaten by the San Francisco 49ers in their past five matchups. Over that time, the 49ers were the better team on that day, but the LA Rams were arguably the better team in that season.  Over the past two seasons, the LA Rams have earned a record of 22-10, while the San Francisco 49ers have been no better than 15-17. Now, keep in mind that three of the Rams’ losses were to the 49ers, as were three of the 49ers’ victories.

With that factored into the picture, the Rams have run a 22-7 record, while the 49ers have run a 12-17 record.  By comparing the records alone, the Rams have been the far more superior team in terms of winning NFL games. So clearly, the 49ers must have some strategy that has baffled the Rams coaching staff. So what is it? Let’s break it down:

Jimmy Garoppolo success

There is something about quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo that defies explanation when he plays against the LA Rams.  Of course, it starts with a pass rush that simply hasn’t shown up.  In the past two seasons, the LA Rams have gotten to Garoppolo just once in two games for a loss of three yards.

That’s pitifully ineffective.

That lack of pass rush, and a strong commitment to their running attack, has allowed the 49ers quarterback to cherry-pick his throws, and keep the Rams defense guessing.  That, in turn, has given the 49ers an outstanding 50 percent conversion rate on third and fourth downs with Garoppolo under center.

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The 49ers will use either tight end George Kittle or WR Deebo Samuel to exploit the middle of the Rams’ defense. While the Rams have DB Jalen Ramsey, the offensive formation has refined the ability to commit Ramsey into coverage of one of their top targets, and then simply throw to the other guy.