The Los Angeles Rams defeated the Arizona Cardinals 30-23 on Monday Night Football. The game seemed to swing in the Cardinals' favor before kickoff, as both Jalen Ramsey and Tyler Higbee landed on the COVID-19 list hours before the game. Los Angeles was able to overcome this with multiple interceptions on defense and touchdown passes to all three starting receivers.
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- Snaps include plays called back due to penalties like offensive holding or defensive pass interference. The other three stats have these plays removed.
- Targets may differ from official NFL sources. The most likely discrepancy would be from a clear thrown away pass, where the NFL may give the target to the nearest receiver, while this data will not.
- Carries are only on designed plays. Quarterback scrambles won’t count for the total number of carries in the game.
- James Conner: 13 carries, 31 yards, 2 TDs, 9 receptions, 94 receiving yards (42 receiving yards after contact)
- Cooper Kupp: 13 receptions, 123 yards, 1 TD (45.5% threat rate)
|Los Angeles Rams||Snaps||Routes Run||Targets||Carries|
|Odell Beckham Jr.||42||30||6||0|
|Arizona Cardinals||Snaps||Routes Run||Targets||Carries|
The Rams without Tyler Higbee: The Rams tight end landed on injured reserve just hours before the game. He played the third-most snaps at tight end coming into the week even though the Rams only run 12 personnel 12% percent of the time. Two other backups are on injured reserve, so Los Angeles was stuck with two inexperienced tight ends.
Kendall Blanton had been serving as the primary backup in recent weeks, and he took over the every-down tight end role. Brycen Hopkins played for the first time a week ago in typical run-blocking sets, and he was used in that role again Monday. Blanton finished with two catches for 29 yards. There were reports Higbee’s COVID-19 test was likely a false positive, in which case Higbee would likely return for the Rams' next game. If Higbee misses time again for whatever reason this season, Blanton would be a waiver-wire target in deeper leagues.
Odell Beckham Jr.’s increased role: Beckham joined the Rams in Week 10 and only played in 15 snaps. He increased that to a 98% snap share in Week 12, but that was only because Ben Skowronek missed the game. He was down to 53% of Los Angeles' offensive snaps the following week while Skowronek recorded a 24% snap share. Beckham was able to take more snaps away from the fourth-string wide receiver in this game. He played well, securing six receptions for 77 yards and a touchdown. He is becoming a much safer player to use in fantasy lineups.
The missing starting running backs: The Rams' Darrell Henderson is on the COVID-19 list while the Cardinals' Chase Edmonds wasn’t quite ready to return from injured reserve. When the Rams and Cardinals haven't had their starters in the past, both Sony Michel and James Conner would play close to 100% of their team's offensive snaps. This game was no different, as they were the only two running backs to carry the ball all night. Michel gained more rushing yards (79) while Conner scored the two touchdowns. Some would argue these backfields have been better when these two are running with the ball, so it will be interesting to see how the teams adjust once their other runners are back.