No excuse needed. LA Rams win 3rd title in 5 seasons for HC Sean McVay
Rams offense is the key
I hate to oversimplify something as complex as the Wildcard Round of the NFL Playoff, but when it comes down to the Arizona Cardinals versus the LA Rams, the deciding factor has been turnovers. In the loss on Week 4, the LA Rams turned the ball over twice. In the win on Week 14, the Arizona Cardinals turned the ball over twice. So the Rams will need to be very good at ball security in this one.
The Cardinals will likely dedicate two defenders to shadow WR Cooper Kupp in this game. That should give plenty of opportunities for Odell Beckham Jr. to have a breakout game, and I think he will do exactly that. Another key target will be TE Tyler Higbee, who scored two touchdowns along with catching six of eight passes for 55 yards.
Cam the Ram Akers is back
Also, RB Cam Akers debuted with 13 offensive snaps. While the 49er run defense was quite stingy all game, Akers did manage five rushes, as well as three receptions in the game. Are 13 yards enough to get excited about? No, of course not. But his debut was not about working him to death. The LA Rams wanted to see how he might handle the workload, and all lights are green.
The Rams will commit to the running game against the Cardinals and will run the ball effectively. I would look for the Rams to run the ball from 25-30 times against the Cardinals. Unlike the 49ers run defense, I believe that the Rams can get some running lanes opened up, and in doing so keep the Cardinals offense off the field.
I like the LA Rams chances. While the team must sort out the secondary, that could bait the Cardinals into a pass-heavy attack on offense, which could play right into the LA Rams’ hands.
The Rams faced the Cardinals in the last game of the season in 2020 and emerged with an 18-7 victory. While the Rams seem to forget how to play football whenever they face the 49ers, they seem to remember how to win against the Cardinals.