One of the rare joys I find now with the arduous task of authoring so many insightful articles (okay, that is admittedly debatable) about the LA Rams is the ability to simply sit and enjoy a football game for what it’s worth. And I made a pregame decision to watch the Week 2 Thursday Night Football game that featured two opponents of the LA Rams: The LA Chargers versus the Kansas City Chiefs.
It was an incredibly thrilling contest, a game that was every bit worthy of the nation’s prime time television time slot it was awarded. Not only that, but it was the inaugural broadcast of Thursday Night Football for Amazon Prime streaming, and the game had to please its producers.
It was a very dramatic game, one that saw the visiting Chargers jump out to lead, and then expand it to a ten-point lead that seemed to spell doom for the Chiefs. But the Kansas City Chiefs roared back, ending the game with a hard-fought victory by the score of 27-24. Try as I might to simply enjoy the game, the aftermath triggered
Candid conclusion III: Rams need to get better to compete
One of the first candid conclusions that jumped out at me as I watched the second Thursday Night Football game was the difference in their level of play to that of the LA Rams in Week 1. Both the LA Chargers and the Kansas City Chiefs were efficient on offense and effective on defense. How can both be true?
Offensively, the Chargers put up 419 yards of offense, including 326 yards of passing offense. Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert was 33 of 48 passing for 334 yards, three touchdowns, and one interception. That one interception was a pick-six, a 99-yard interception run back. Herbert was sacked twice for a loss of eight yards. The Chargers rushed 24 times for 75 yards. Not great, but they rushed enough to keep the Chiefs’ defense honest.
The Chiefs quarterback, Patrick Mahomes, was 24 of 35 passing for 235 yards, two touchdowns, and no interceptions. Mahomes was sacked once, for a loss of nine yards. Their rushing was a bit more effective, as they turned 18 rushes into 93 rushing yards.
Neither offense was particularly good at converting third downs. The Chargers converted just five of 16 third down opportunities, while the Chiefs converted just four of twelve third downs. The Chargers, however, were a perfect four of four on fourth down.
From what we witnessed from the LA Rams in Week 1, the Rams would have lost to either team. The Rams need to improve quickly, as this year’s schedule is loaded with the NFL’s most competitive teams.