Rams Schedule Preview: Three Critical Games in 2019

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Los Angeles Rams Photo Credit: Tom St. George - Under Creative Commons License

Most players or coaches say that the most important game is the next one. However, to most people looking at the Los Angeles Rams schedule, they are more interested in some games than others. The most interesting games are the “Must-See” games. When one talks about a “Must-See” game, they are talking about games that are competitive with high stakes. Here are those games for the Rams in 2019.

Three Must-See Rams Games In 2019

Los Angeles Rams At Seattle Seahawks: Week 5

Week 5 should be top-tier entertainment, featuring a matchup between Russell Wilson and Jared Goff, two quarterbacks with three Super Bowl appearances in the last six years combined.

Additionally, it will be the Rams’ first divisional clash of the year and could set the tone for the entire division as these are the top two favorites to win the division this year.

The rivalry between these two teams is the most profound in the division at the moment and arguably one of the most intense rivalries in the entire NFC this year. The rivalry has led to close games in recent memory: of the last four games, three of them were decided by six points or less.

Last year’s game at Seattle came down to a 4th down quarterback sneak to seal the win for the Rams. If this game against the Seahawks is half as entertaining as it is shaping up to be, viewers will not be disappointed.

Finally, the stakes for the Rams are more than simple bragging rights. If the Rams were to win this game, it would give LA a real chance to sweep the series (considering the fact that the next game would be played in Los Angeles) which would guarantee a tiebreaker at the end of the year in the Rams’ favor. Put simply, if the Rams were to win this game, it could double or triple their chances of winning the division.

Chicago Bears At Los Angeles Rams: Week 10

This game is all about Jared Goff. Goff faced the Bears last year in Chicago, on Sunday Night Football and got shellacked in front of the entire country in primetime, throwing four interceptions and no touchdowns in a losing effort where the team only scored six points. Going into the game, Goff seemed unstoppable. However, after the game, the advent of a negative narrative had emerged.  

Almost exactly a year later, Goff will be playing the same team on Sunday Night Football in Los Angeles.

This will be his chance to edit the narrative. If Goff can put together a solid game against the Bears in Week 10, it would go a long way toward changing the narrative in his favor.

However, if Goff were to play a terrible game against the Bears for the second year in a row, a tried-and-true blueprint for beating him will officially be in the wild.

Quarterbacks with obvious blueprints to defeating them often keep their ceilings low and their careers quiet. History has shown this to be true with modern quarterbacks like Trevor Siemian, arguably Dak Prescott, and almost every quarterback that had only one or two good seasons in their careers.

All told, this game could be the beginning of Jared Goff’s time as the nationally accepted franchise quarterback of the next decade-and-a-half or he could be in big trouble.

New Orleans Saints At Los Angeles Rams: Week 2

Is there such a thing as a must-win game in Week 2? If not, this is as close as it gets.

Both teams are built to be offensive powerhouses led by two offensive masterminds in Sean McVay (second-ranked offense in 2018) and Sean Payton (eighth-ranked offense in 2018).

Both rosters will be relatively intact from last year and the game will be early in the year when offenses typically reign over defenses. Considering these factors, the game could be a shootout in a similar fashion to the Chiefs-At-Rams fireworks show of 2018. It would not be too crazy to think that the final score could double that of the infamous 26-23 NFC championship game at the end of last year.

Needless to say, arguably the most controversial and dramatic game of the 2018 season was the Saints-Rams NFC championship game that was largely decided by a no-call on a pass interference hit from cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman that would have allowed the Saints to essentially end the game. Instead, the Rams were able to win the game in overtime.

Of course, when a team loses in overtime one game before the Super Bowl, there will be some extra stakes brought to the rematch, especially if one team feels that they were robbed of a game-sealing flag.

As might be expected, the Saints see this game as a revenge game and a way to prove to the world that they were indeed robbed. Also, a win would serve as proof that the Saints, not the Rams, deserved to be in the Super Bowl. On the other hand, the Rams likely see this game as a way to defend their name and show that they actually deserved to play in Super Bowl 53. As if there wasn’t enough on the line, this game could show to be an important tiebreaker when it comes to playoff seeding later in the season.  

Overall, this game looks to be a competitive battle from the two best teams of the NFC last season and is shaping up to be not just the biggest game of the early season but one of the biggest games in all of the NFL, possibly serving as a conclusion to the Saints-Rams trilogy.

LA Rams

Los Angeles Rams. Photo Credit: Tom St. George – Under Creative Commons License