The number of topics and battles in the Week 4 matchup between the Arizona Cardinals and the Los Angeles Rams almost seems endless. Kyler Murray and Matthew Stafford are squaring off in what appears to be a pre-season MVP race. The Rams’ devasting defense, led by Aaron Donald, is up against an injured offensive line. Both teams have a plethora of playmakers who can wreak havoc on opposing defenses at any time. The matchup between Jalen Ramsey and DeAndre Hopkins. And, of course, Sean McVay’s continued success against the Cardinals, with an 8-0 record since taking over the Rams.
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There is one aspect to keep an eye on that isn’t as exciting as the battles just mentioned. The Rams’ offensive line has been one of the best in the league.
The Rams’ offensive line has been one of the best in the league. Hunter Hodies of Sports Illustrated’s Rams Digest had this to say about the Rams offensive line against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Stafford’s offensive line has only allowed one sack (which was halfway through the fourth quarter) and eight hurries throughout the whole contest. He also was only pressured on 18.4% of his dropbacks, according to Pro Football Focus. To make matters even better, Stafford had only been pressured on 20.3% of his dropbacks for the first two games. If that keeps up, it would be the first time since 2011 that his pressured rate would be less than 25%.
In Week 3, the Rams faced a dominant Buccaneers defensive front and held them at bay. For the entire game, center Brian Allen allowed only one pressure. The Rams offensive line is also lethal when compared to the rest of the league, according to Ben Baldwin of The Athletic. According to Pro Football Focus, the Rams are third in the league in pass block win rate and second in pass block grade behind the Cardinals. Right guard Austin Corbett has been a great find for the Rams.
The Browns selected the lineman 33rd overall in 2017 and traded him to the Rams for a fifth-round pick in 2019. According to ESPN, he ranks second in pass block win rate (
Andrew Whitworth, the veteran left tackle, must not be overlooked. If Stafford is given time in the pocket, the Rams offense has the potential to be explosive. When a team only allows one sack per game, they are more likely to win.
The 3-0 start is self-evident.
Cardinals Defensive Response
Cardinals Defensive Response Vance Joseph, the defensive coordinator, will have to find ways to exploit the Rams offensive line. In Week 3, the Cardinals only had two sacks against the Jaguars. Chandler Jones hasn’t had a sack since a dominant five-sack performance in Week 1. But Joseph recognizes that there’s more to it than sacks.
“The sacks aren’t always indicative of how well he’s playing,” Joseph said. “He had four or five quarterback hits last week, as well as a forced interception that we dropped.” Last week, he performed admirably. ”
In 2021, J.J. Watt is still without a sack. However, there were numerous instances of his impact on the Jaguars.
Joseph loves to use blitzes to his advantage, and it’s worked against the Vikings and Jaguars in both second halves. Through three games, the Cardinals have only allowed two touchdowns. The Rams, on the other hand, are a different breed. “It’s going to be a tough out,” Joseph predicted. “However, our team is working hard and eagerly anticipating the challenge..” ”
Linebacker Jordan Hicks had the game’s final sack to seal the 31-19 win. It could be done in a variety of ways, including putting Isaiah Simmons on the spot.
With Kupp and even tight end Tyler Higbee, the Rams can easily use screens against the Cardinals to counter a pass rush. Between the two teams, there is little room for error.
The Rams offensive line versus the Cardinals pass rush will be a fascinating matchup to watch, and it could easily determine the outcome of the game.
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