The Los Angeles Rams come to New Orleans to face the Saints Sunday for the right to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl. The black and gold dispatched the reigning champ Eagles in a gritty and tense game that was not settled until the final minute. Drew Brees started the game with an interception and bobbled the center exchange on the next drive, which is not usually Brees like. The team also had 11 penalties and generally looked like a team that had not played together in a few weeks, which is what the situation was. No matter, they shut the Eagles out after the first quarter and won 20-14, including a soul crushing drive that took 11 and a half minutes and culminated in a touchdown in the third quarter that put them ahead for good. Now the Rams come to the dome for the right to play in the Super Bowl.
Sean McVay is on the road for the first time in his brief playoff history and even though he is a genius, the only way he might be able to get plays in to Goff Sunday could be sign language. Every other coach in the league that knows this “Other Sean” is getting head coaching jobs with limited experience in some cases. Well, we have our own coach Sean and he has been an offensive innovator as a head coach in the NFL since McVay was at Miami of Ohio as a student athlete. These two teams were the best in the conference all year and it is only right they should meet on this particular stage for this opportunity.
Many talk about the Rams being a high wire act but really they are a power running, play action offense. Their outside zone running scheme has been so effective that Todd Gurley and CJ Anderson both ran for over 100 yards against Dallas in last weeks’ divisional playoff game. Los Angeles scored over 32 points a game while the Saints averaged a little over 31 a game this past season. The Saints were number one in overall point differential with plus 151, the Rams were third at plus 143. The balance of both offenses in very similar as well, New Orleans’ pass to run ratio is around 54/46 the Rams at about 55/45.
The Saints lost Sheldon Rankins Sunday and will have the “next man up” approach, the Rams missing Cooper Kupp from the teams’ previous meeting, I think that is a push there. In fact, Kupp led the Rams in catch percentage at 72%,which is good, not Can’t Guard Mike 85%, but good nonetheless. The last game was 45-35 but I don’t think that many points are scored this time,but I do feel the Saints offense gets into more of a groove.
The Saints have to clean up the penalties as they had 11 against the Eagles, that won’t get it done the Rams are very good and if they give them free yards it could be a bad day in the big easy. New Orleans can’t go 14 points down to these Rams, McVay is like Payton, he is a fearless play caller, so early execution will be a key. Goff and McVay are about to experience their first road playoff game and not just any road game, a loud, rude and hopefully liquored up some dome crowd. Jared Goff won’t know who to call Halle Berry, Chuck Berry or Barry White, it will not make a difference. Then the boy genius, the wrong Sean can congratulate the real offensive mastermind OUR Sean.