Things looked a little sticky when Arizona got the ball to start the game. When Arizona WR Larry Fitzgerald had two catches for 27 yards on the first drive, and RB Tim Hightower ran for 17 yards on three carries, resulting in an Arizona field-goal, it looked as if the Cardinals were going to show up as a different team, a team the the Rams were not ready for.
The scare tactic continued after the Rams were forced to punt on their opening drive, which gave Arizona the ball back. After a 32 yard run by Hightower, followed by a 14 yard reception by WR Steve Breaston, the Cardinals kicked another field-goal, taking a 6-0 lead over the Rams. Unfortunately for the Cardinals, that was the end of their offense for the rest of the game.
The Rams were able to get field-goals on their next two drives. They didn't fight their way into Arizona territory with any big plays; but they were able to slowly, yet consistently, move the ball, and get one first down after another.
The second quarter was probably the most uneventful quarter of the game, it was basically both teams punting to one another. The Rams were the first team to break the cycle, and they did so on their last drive of the half. WR Brandon Gibson caught two first-downs to begin the drive, with receptions of 11 and 15 yards. Then a 14 yard reception by WR Laurent Robinson, followed by 13 yard reception by RB Steven Jackson, put the Rams into field-goal range, and that made the score 9-6 at the half.
The start of the second half was not ideal, as the Rams had the ball, but the drive was put to an end after QB Sam Bradford was picked off by Arizona defensive-back Kerry Rhodes. The interception was not damaging, as Arizona was forced to punt.
On the drive following the interception, the Rams' offense was finally able to do some serious damage. A 17 yard reception by WR Danny Amendola, and a 16 yard reception by Danario Alexander, put the Rams into Arizona territory. Steven Jackson was then able to break loose for a 27 yard touchdown run, making the score 16-6.
An interception by CB Bradley Fletcher was able to give St. Louis great field position for their final drive of the third quarter. After a 10 yard reception by Robinson, the Rams eventually settled for yet another field-goal, which made the score 19-6, and that's the way it stayed for the remainder of the game.
WHERE DO THE RAMS STAND IN THE WEST AFTER TODAY?
The Seattle Seahawks and the St.Louis Rams are tied as far as their records go (6-6), but the Rams own the tie-breaker since they beat Seattle back during week four. Seattle was able to maintain an equal record after beating the Carolina Panthers today (arguably the worst team in the NFL); however, things won't be getting any easier for the Seahawks. Here is Seattle's remaining schedule:
-@ San Francisco (4-8)
-vs. Atlanta (10-2)
-@ Tampa Bay (7-5)
-vs. St. Louis (6-6)
If the teams have equal records entering their final game against each other, then that final game will be for the NFC West title. The Rams don't have it easy the rest of the way, but they certainly have it easier than Seattle, and they are (in my opinion) the better football team. Here is St. Louis' remaining schedule:
-@ New Orleans (9-3)
-vs. Kansas City (8-4)
-vs. San Francisco (4-8)
-@ Seattle (6-6)
That is two very winnable games at home, as well as one very winnable game on the road in Seattle. Whereas Seattle will be fighting an uphill battle in each of their remaining games.