Before an estimated crowd of 74,154 at SoFi Stadium, where Cowboy jerseys were on full display, the Los Angeles Rams suffered their second straight loss in week five. The Cowboys rolled into town and defeated the Super Bowl Champions, 22-10. The Rams have 12 regular season games to put up, or they can kiss their run-it-back scenario goodbye.
It was a tough day again for Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford who was sacked five times in Sunday’s loss. Stafford completed 28 of 42 passes for 308 yards, one touchdown, an interception, and two fumbles,s including a 54-yard strike to wide receiver Chatarius “Tutu” Atwell that set up a Rams field goal in the first quarter.
Wide receiver Cooper Kupp, a bright spot for the Rams, ended his day with a 75-yard touchdown catch, for a total of seven catches, 125 yards. Kupp became the 21st active receiver to reach 6,000 career receiving yards.
Cam Akers rushed for only 33 yards on 13 carries. Head coach Sean McVay summed up the Rams’ play, saying Stafford needs more help.
“I think he’s [Stafford] doing everything he can. Guys gotta play better around him,” McVay said. “I love Matthew Stafford. I’ll ride with that guy until the end of time.”
The banged-up Rams offense struggled against the Dallas pass rush. According to Next Gen Stats, “Stafford was pressured on 48.9% of his dropbacks, which was the second-highest rate for the Rams since 2017”.
Sunday’s offensive line had only three linemen who also started in week one; Center Coleman Shelton remains out for four to six weeks with a high ankle sprain, and safety Jordon Fuller remains out for two to four weeks with a hamstring injury. Left guard David Edwards remains in concussion protocol, while Brian Allen, Tremayne Anchrum Jr., and Logan Bruss are all injured. The Rams’ O’ line is hemorrhaging, and McVay and offensive coordinator Liam Coen are desperate for answers.
On the defensive side of the ball, lineman Aaron Donald continued to show why he’s considered one of the best to play the game, recording six total tackles, two sacks from the edge in the first half, and one forced fumble. Next Gen Stats records Donald as having sacked 50 quarterbacks in his career. Joining Donald, All-Pro defensive back Jalen Ramsey got the first sack of his seven-year NFL career in the third quarter.
The Cowboy’s story continues to highlight the play of backup quarterback Cooper Rush. Rush completed 10 of 16 passes for 102 yards. Other contributors for the Cowboys included running back Tony Pollard, 86 yards and a touchdown, with Ezekiel Elliot rushing for 78 yards. The Dallas defense continues to play well, allowing only 87 yards in the second half.
The Rams will host the Carolina Panthers next Sunday at home. The Panthers are coming off a loss to the 49ers, which resulted in Panther head coach Matt Rhule’s firing after a 1-4 start this season. The Cowboys are 4-1 on the season and will take on their division rival, the undefeated Philadelphia Eagles.