GET ON THE HORN: Rams Maul Bears on Monday Night Footballcsudhbulletin October 30, 2020 0 COMMENTS
The Mob Squad stood tall all night long shutting out the Bears offense and showing off in front of a national crowd. Photo by Los Angeles Rams.
By Matt Barrero, Assistant Sports Editor
LOS ANGELES 24, CHICAGO 10
The Los Angeles Rams (5-2) finally earned their first statement win of the 2020 season and on Monday Night Football, no less, after defeating the visiting Chicago Bears (5-2) 24-10. The Bears had come into Monday riding a two-game winning streak but were outmatched on all three elements of play by the host Rams.
OFFENSIVE PERFORMANCE –
Jared Goff and company regained their offensive prowess and helped Los Angeles maintain their undefeated streak at their new home, SoFi Stadium. After a punt on their first drive, Goff led a 7-play, 52-yard drive culminating with a Josh Reynolds 4-yard reception to give the Rams the first points of the night. The offense would stay quiet the rest of the first half, only gaining points on a 22-yard field goal from now former kicker Sam Sloman and the Rams took a 10-3 lead into halftime. Following yet another drive ending with a punt to open a half, another Goff-to-Reynolds connection, this one for 21 yards, and the rushing attack of Malcolm Brown led the Rams down the field 55 yards and ended with a 1-yard rush by Brown to put Los Angeles up 17-3 midway through the third quarter. An interception by Taylor Rapp in the endzone stopped the Bears from getting back into the game and this time it was Goff leading the way once again, driving 80 yards and capping off the drive with a 12-yard pass to Gerald Everett to put the Rams up big 24-3. A missed field goal followed by a fumble by Robert Woods allowed Chicago to score their final points of the game as the Rams held on to win by 14.
Goff ended his fourth appearance on Monday Night Football with a solid outing overall, throwing for 220 yards and two touchdowns. It was his first game since Week 4 without throwing an interception. He also threw the first touchdown pass of 10-plus yards allowed by the Bears formidable defense all season. Reynolds was the leading receiver on the night making four catches for 52 yards and a touchdown. Cooper Kupp finished with six catches for 43 yards and surpassed 3000 yards receiving for his career, becoming the third-fastest Rams wide receiver to achieve the accomplishment. The running game stepped it up on the big stage of national attention. Brown and Darrell Henderson Jr. combined for 25 carries, 121 rushing yards and the score from Brown. The offense did its job thanks in large part to perhaps, the best defensive performance the Rams have had so far this season.
DEFENSIVE PERFORMANCE –
Last week, I mentioned how the Rams had played their worst game of the season on both sides of the football. I’m not sure if we have some avid readers of the GET ON THE HORN blog inside that fresh locker room at SoFi Stadium, but the Rams I watched play on ESPN Monday night was a complete 180 of the team I watched play in San Francisco just a week prior. The offense showed off, as mentioned above, but the Mob Squad made sure they didn’t miss their opportunity to shine on the national stage. The Bears had done well to win games and have five wins through six weeks of play but in every game they played, they only won by no more than seven points and scored no higher than 30. On paper, yes, Chicago seemed like an elite, powerhouse. On the field, the Rams exposed the offense as no more than lucky.
The Rams defense allowed only three offensive points the entire game (the touchdown was a defensive score for the Bears), 279 total yards, sacked Nick Foles four times and intercepted him twice. Micah Kiser led the team with eight total tackles. Former Chicago Bear Leonard Floyd ended his night with six tackles and two sacks getting some sweet revenge against his old employer. Jalen Ramsey and Rapp combined for 11 total tackles and each had an interception.
Overall, this was a full team win and quite the recovery following their downplay in San Francisco the Sunday prior.
FINAL THOUGHTS –
Special Teams Stud:
Johnny Hekker is known to be one of, if not, the best punters in the entire NFL. Hekker punted a total of five times throughout the game and easily pinned all five inside the Chicago 10-yard line. He became the only punter in the last 30 years to accomplish this feat. It’s rare to see a player make history in one game, let alone a punter. For his efforts, Hekker was named NFC Special Teams Player of the Week.
First Half Leads Loom Large:
In 29 previous occasions the Rams have held a lead at halftime, they are a perfect 29-0 under Sean McVay. The victory on Monday added to the impressive streak as Los Angeles held another lead at the half and eventually won the game pushing the record to 30-0.
Safety Terrell Burgess suffered a broken ankle in Monday’s victory and will miss the rest of the season. This is a tough circumstance for the rookie who was looking to shine brighter as the season progressed. Prior to his departure, Burgess accounted for five total tackles.
COMING UP –
Stop me if you’re heard this before: The Rams will be playing on the East Coast this Sunday. Instead of the northeast, Los Angeles will travel south to Florida to take on the Miami Dolphins (3-3). The Dolphins announced last week rookie quarterback Tua Tagovailoa will make his NFL debut and start ahead of veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick. Miam is currently on a two-game winning streak and will look to keep their streak alive with their top draft pick under center. Kickoff is scheduled for 10:00 a.m. PST on FOX.
Chicago will look to get back in the win column as they welcome the New Orleans Saints (4-2) to Soldier Field. Drew Brees and the Saints are coming off a narrow victory over the Carolina Panthers and are looking to win their fourth game in a row in the Windy City. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:25 p.m. PST on FOX.