The Rams entered week 4 welcoming the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to Los Angeles for a 71 degrees and sunny kickoff looking to continue their undefeated streak. The visiting Buccaneers led by Head Coach Bruce Arians defeated Sean McVay and the defending NFC Champions 55-40 in a stunning high scoring affair.
The Rams fell behind quick and early 21-0 in the 2nd quarter, after quarterback Jared Goff was intercepted twice on back-to-back possessions. It was difficult for the offense to get going but once the Rams started putting together solid drives they were playing a game of catch up.
The Rams fourth year quarterback completed 45 of 68 passes for 517 yards, 2 touchdowns, 3 interceptions, and a fumble. Running Back Todd Gurley rushed 5 times for 16 yards and 2 rushing touchdowns, along with 7 catches for 54 yards. Wide receiver Cooper Kupp hauled in 9 catches for 121 yards and a touchdown, while Robert Woods had 13 receptions for 164 yards.
The Buccaneers played their best game of the season. The defense looked like a well oiled machine allowing the Rams to rush only 11 times for 28 yards, while pressuring Goff in the pocket all game forcing him to throw 3 interceptions and losing a fumble to former Rams defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh for a 37-yard touchdown that sealed the game.
Third year wide receiver Chris Godwin played lights out as he shredded the Rams secondary for 12 catches 172 yards and 2 touchdowns. Mike Evans caught 4 passes for 89 yards and a touchdown. Running Back Ronald Jones rushed 19 times for 70 yards and a touchdown. Quarterback Jameis Winston completed 28 of 41 passes for 385 yards, 4 touchdowns, and an interception.
The Rams defense looked to spearhead a comeback at the 8:25 mark of the 4th quarter as Rams Defensive Back Marcus Peters intercepted Jameis Winston for an electrifying pick 6 cutting the Buccaneers lead to 5 points, 45-40. Later in the fourth former Buccaneers Defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh forced Goff to fumble, scooping the ball and running for a 37 yard touchdown for the Tampa Bay victory.
After the game Jared Goff shared his displeasure with his performance. “Frustrating, for sure. Frustrating, for sure and I think I try to have a good perspective on it, knowing it’s only Week 4 and knowing that we did do some good things and we do have a Thursday night game (in Week 5),” said Goff. Let this one go by as quick as possible, because we’ve got to go up to Seattle on Thursday. But, it is frustrating and it is something that we do need to get fixed quickly.”
As the Rams look forward to a quick turnaround for a Thursday night showdown with the Seattle Seahawks, Head Coach Sean McVay voiced his priority to fix and learn from their mistakes against the Buccaneers.
“A lot of things that we’ve got to look at and get figured out, get fixed and that’s exactly what we will do. Hats off to (Buccaneers Head) Coach (Bruce) Arians and the Bucs, they did a nice job finding a way to get the win. There’s a lot of things that we can correct and a lot of things we will improve on,” said McVay. “I think the only thing that we can look at as a blessing is that we get a chance to do that on a short week. We’re going to Seattle on Thursday night and that’s all that we know how to do is go back to work and try to figure it out.”
The (3-1) Rams will face the (3-1) Seahawks at deafening CenturyLink Field in Seattle Thursday night for a 5:20pm kickoff time.