Rams Shine in London with Shutout Over Cardinals

Updated: October 24, 2017

Ladies and gentlemen, the Rams are 5-2.  Something we haven’t been able to say since the early 2000s.  Oh yeah, as you can probably tell by the title, it was also a shutout.  Nice, right?

But in all seriousness, this was a huge game for the Rams.  Not only was it a good offensive showing, but the defense was all over Carson Palmer and Adrian Peterson.  Lamarcus Joyner made his return to the lineup and recorded his second career interception.  Mark Barron did the same, and Aaron Donald, Michael Brockers, and a few others recorded sacks.

The game opened slowly, as the only scoring in the first quarter came off a field goal from Greg Zuerlein.  Then the second quarter came around, and the Rams offense exploded.  Zuerlein added a field goal first, and then Joyner picked off Palmer’s pass before Todd Gurley took it to the house in beautiful fashion, slipping through a tackle before booking it down the sideline.  By this point, Palmer had suffered an arm injury and was done for the game.  The Cardinals subbed in Drew Stanton, hopefully trying to spark the offense.  His first throw was intercepted by Mark Barron, and then Jared Goff got in on the action by running it into the endzone himself.  It was his second career rushing touchdown.  At the end of the quarter, the team was trying to get one more touchdown, but couldn’t pull it off.  Fortunately, it was Greg the Leg to the rescue, as he nailed a 53-yard kick to extend their lead before they would receive the kick to start the second half.

The second half began with Goff finally throwing his first interception of the season, and it came with a good return.  The interception was somewhat controversial, as the intended receiver, Gurley, was interfered with while a different player picked it off.  But the defense wasn’t fazed at all.  The Cardinals found themselves stuck at midfield and were forced to punt.  The fourth quarter was highlighted with several Malcolm Brown runs, and he was a very key part of driving the offense down the field before Goff hit Cooper Kupp, who ran it in for his third touchdown of the year.  The Cardinals couldn’t get any offense going on their final possession, and Sean Mannion took the knee for the Rams to nab their first shutout of the year, and the NFC West lead.

The most notable thing I noticed is that you didn’t really hear names like Adrian Peterson or Larry Fitzgerald while the Cardinals were on offense.  Peterson had his fair share of rushing attempts, but only in the early first quarter did he really have anything going for him.  The rest of the game, the Rams’ defense was able to stop him either at or near the line of scrimmage.  Today, the Rams played like they deserved a playoff spot.  It’s really amazing to see how much Sean McVay has transformed this team.  In one year, they went from looking like a laughing stock to looking like legitimate playoff contenders.  A tough series of games is ahead, but the Rams will have the bye week to make the proper adjustments and get themselves ready for it.

But for now, at the end of the day, the NFL had better take note.  The Rams are back.  And they will be hungry for more.

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