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*Pre-editor post (forgive any typos)
What can I say about this game? The Rams were pulling their starters for the 4th quarter. It was 39-10 but felt like about a 100 to 10. The 49ers were never in this game, which is because the Rams are the most dominant team in the NFL (if the key starters stay healthy). No breaking news there.
It’s tough enough for opponents that the Rams have the best offense, in my eyes, in the league…now, here comes that defense. If Aqib Talib comes back, this team is virtually unbeatable.
…but Talib is out, and the schedule gets very harsh ahead. The Rams play five top 10 (our rankings) teams in the next six games…GB-NO-SEA-KC-BYE-DET-CHI – somewhere in there, they’re going to get beat. The schedule is too difficult. Still, the Rams should cruise to 14-15 wins.
There’s a lot of talk about the Rams coasting to the end and not needing to play players down the stretch. Save that fantasy worry until after Week 9. If the Saints beat the Rams – it will be a fight to the death down to Weeks 16-17 for the #1 seed between NO-LAR…if the Rams beat the Saints, then we can start discussing that. The Rams give up the top seed to the Saints…having to go AT New Orleans…it could cost them their trip to the Super Bowl.
The 49ers have no such worries. Their biggest issue is whether they will win 2 or 3 games this season. Better luck in 2019.
Fantasy Player Notes…
-- Matt Breida (5-15-0) started and got hurt pretty quickly. The next guy taking work when Breida wasn’t, at RB, was Alfred Morris (9-25-0, 0-0-0/1).
Raheem Mostert (7-54-0, 4-19-0/4) came in after Morris, and instantly injected life into the running game, ripping off two 10+ yard runs. Still, it doesn’t look like the 49ers are making any strong move to push Mostert.
Mostert is very athletic/fast and an experienced journeyman RB. He can work just fine if he gets the touches. Will he get the touches? If Breida was ruled out this week/rest of season (hypothetically), I’d dive into Mostert quick…he far superior to what Morris doing right now. A great matchup with Arizona this week. Mostert could be the surprise of Week 8…or not…depends upon Breida’s status.
-- I needed Jared Goff (18-24 for 202 yards, 2 TDs/0 INT) to have a bigger fantasy day, but I’m not down on him at all – he played great as usual. The problem was the 49ers were terrible/got killed and the Rams had short fields to deal with and then Goff came out for most of the 4th quarter because of the onslaught. He played about 80% of a game and didn’t have much opportunity to accumulate when he was on the field. He did as well as he could with what opportunity he had.
The schedule gets really difficult now – a sweet set up for big shootout numbers ahead. He faces Rodgers, Mahomes, Brees, Trubisky among others ahead.
-- Useless info…
Nick Williams (2-17-0/2) was picked up by the Rams the week prior…off the Cooper Kupp injury. He caught me by surprise for a moment because he worked the Kupp role, and kinda looked like Kupp. I thought it was Kupp at first target/catch.
If you have super deep fantasy rosters/lineups…in a Green Bay shootout Week 8…Kupp ruled out again – don’t be shocked if Nick Williams has 3-4-5 catches for 30-40-50+ yards.
-- I bet you’re like me…
You drafted Marquise Goodwin (2-29-0/5) to be your ace in the hole WR1 opportunity drafted between rounds 6-10+ this summer. However, some of us/e got so fixated on the idea, we paid 3rd-4th round prices in late August drafts because ‘the experts’ finally figured out what we’d been talking about since 2017…Goodwin + Garoppolo = something special for fantasy, potentially.
Then…Goodwin’s hurt in like one play into the season. As soon as he’s about to return, Jimmy G. was gone for the season. We all started to kick the dog and drop Goodwin…what a waste of our love this summer.
Then, out of nowhere, Goodwin has that long TD on MNF vs. Green Bay and %$#%#^@&$%% -- that’s what I was expecting from him this season!!! But we had already cut him or had him benched that game. Oh, great…he scored a 2nd TD that game just to rub it in.
We have an unnatural love affair with Goodwin – beware.
You remember that long TD on MNF. You might not realize that if you took that one lightning strike away, in his 4 games with C.J., Beathard Goodwin is averaging 2.5 catches (just 4.5 targets), 32.3 yards, and 0.25 TDs per game – a sweet WR4 with ‘highs’ of 5 targets, 59 yards (MNF less the 67-yard TD), and his three other games 30 or fewer yards. He’s a sweet WR4…but we have that long TD stuck in our craw.
I love Goodwin too, but it’s C.J. Beathard…Goodwin’s getting extra coverage. He’s a WR3 you hope hits a lightning strike again…he’ll have WR1 weeks but more WR3+ weeks, and average around WR2+. I have more faith in lightning strike guys John Brown and DeSean Jackson.
Be careful not misplacing your love for Goodwin right now.
-- Aaron Donald (9 tackles, 4.0 sacks, 6.0 TFLs) had a surreal game, but I was most impressed with Cory Littleton (10 tackles, 2.0 sack, 3.0 TFLs). He was everywhere and seems like he’s moving at a different speed than everyone else.
This Rams defense has so many pieces to be THE BEST in the NFL. They could be the better-than Jacksonville 2017, BUT Aqib Talib is out…and that’s key. The other problem – the schedule is devastating ahead for a DST…Rodgers-Brees-Wilson-Mahomes the next 4 weeks. Stafford-Trubisky-Wentz after their Week 12 BYE.
I’m not sure there’s a confident start from Weeks 8-15…no matter how good this DST is. If the Rams-DST thrives from here on in…they’re like the 85 Bears or 2015 Broncos (Wade Phillips).
Snap Counts of Interest:
23 = Mostert
20 = Morris
05 = Breida
42 = Higbee
22 = Everett
12 = Tarvarius Moore