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I don’t think anyone was shocked by this one – a 32-16 Rams trouncing of the Cardinals. It was a little bit of a lazy, sloppy game. Arizona putting up a good fight in spurts but was so out of position on certain plays (usually Tyrann Mathieu) and the dropped passes…they couldn’t ‘hang’ in the end. The Rams just kinda sleepwalked through this for the mostly easy victory.
Arizona is giving a decent effort, despite the season essentially over for them, but just a lack of talent and coaching makes them mostly an auto-victory for any quality opponent.
The Rams’ season comes down to Weeks 14-15 with PHI and at SEA. Win both, and they will be NFC West champs and a #1-2 seed. Lose to Philly and then it’s a major NFC West title game with Seattle Week 15. Lose both and they’ll finish 11-5 and potentially a wild card. Winning one of these two huge games Weeks 14-15 really puts the Rams in a good position. Win both and they’re in the argument for best team in the NFC.
Fantasy Player Notes…
-- I re-watched this with one main focus…observing Kerywnn Williams (16-97-0), and how did he almost have a 100+ yard rushing game? I watched this live Sunday and didn’t realize it was happening. I was kinda shocked when I saw the box score later that day.
Here are my basic takeaways after the re-watch…
- Very unimpressive usage of Williams, or intent…to my eye/gut. Arizona seemed to want to split Williams and D.J. Foster right away, and then Williams got on a roll on back-to-back series (6 carries for 70 yards in his main stretch) and just kinda took the reins.
On a goal-line opportunity…Elijah Penny came in for the 1-yard score.
- Williams was nothing special on tape. It seemed like it at first, but all that happened was for a stretch of the game -- Arizona kept running and had wide-open holes, almost as if the Rams couldn’t believe (or didn’t care) they were running the ball with this little RB down 16-0 in the 1st-quarter. Huge holes, Williams was running for a minimum of 7 yards every tote and he was almost untouched until he hit the secondary.
Williams wasn’t making anything special happen. He was just fast through open holes and then tackled/went down immediately on contact.
Williams is not a feature runner. He’s not built for it. I think if Williams gets off to a slow start against Tennessee, they will play Russian Roulette in the backfield. Williams is a very dicey start this week. Tennessee has a top 10 run defense this season.
- Williams had no catches out of the backfield.
Once Williams had his sweet stretch running the ball in the 1st-half, he was getting halted, and then Arizona was down and throwing and Foster was in a little more. The only thing to like about Williams, normally, is him getting 3-4 passes in space and hoping he breaks one big. Right now/this game, he’s just a between the tackles runner…and he’s not built for that.
I don’t feel good about any of this EXCEPT he might get 15-20+ carries again this week because someone has to…and maybe he pops one.
-- With every week, I get a little more impressed with Ricky Seals-Jones (2-44-0/5). I didn’t figure him to have any consistency, but he’s using has athleticism (a college WR) to get open and using his size/strength to battle any tight coverage. He’s been pretty nice after the catch as well. I really thought he would not matter, and he may not…but there is definitely something with him and Gabbert.
In this game, RSJ ran a nice route and got wide-open for a 30+ yard score in the 2nd-half but Gabbert overthrew him. Seals-Jones gets that TD, after the TDs from the week before…and he’s a white-hot FF pickup. No TD…and he was a so-so hopeful TE pickup or left on the free agent list.
He still only plays 15-20 snaps is the concerning part.
-- What a let down by Josh Reynolds (2-6-0/6). This should have been a nice ‘pop’ game for him working the lesser coverage from Arizona but Reynolds was not targeted anywhere near like he was the prior week. There was a red zone play designed for Reynolds that allowed him to come across in motion and Goff hit him for a simple 5-yard score, but Reynolds slipped trying to turn upfield after the catch and that was that…down at the 1-yard line, of course. It was that kind of game for him.
Reynolds will probably have a big play moment in the next week or two, but I wouldn’t try to guess it. This Arizona game was a big test, a step up moment…and there was no stepping up.
-- I’ve been a fan of the Rams DST part of the season…weeks ago. This schedule stretch to the FF finish is why I jumped out a while back.
You can’t confidentially start them Week 14 v. PHI, not Week 15 at SEA, and not really great at TEN Week 16.
Snap Counts of Interest…
31 = K Williams
28 = DJ Foster
05 = Elijah Penny
33 = Gresham
25 = Niklas
15 = Seals-Jones
51 = Kupp
42 = Reynolds