Rams are one win away from having a stranglehold on the NFC

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The 2018 season isn’t even half over, but the Rams are close to having an overwhelming lead for home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.

At 8-0, the Rams have the best record in football. The second-best record in the NFC belongs to the 6-1 Saints, and the Rams visit New Orleans this week. With a win, the Rams would have a 2.5-game lead and the head-to-head tiebreaker advantage, and it would be very, very tough to envision anyone catching them.

Then attention would turn less to whether the Rams can get the No. 1 seed in the playoffs, and more to whether the Rams can go 16-0. The Rams’ Monday night game against the Chiefs on November 19 in Mexico City looms as potentially the biggest regular-season game of the season, not because it would have much of an impact on the Rams’ playoff position but because it could be the signature game of the Rams’ run to 16-0.

Of course, the Rams may not even try to go 16-0. Sean McVay has made it clear, both last year after the Rams clinched the NFC West and this year in the preseason, that he prioritizes keeping his players healthy. The Rams might rest their starters late in the season even if they’re undefeated.

But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. If the Saints beat the Rams, suddenly they both have one loss, and the Saints have the head-to-head tiebreaker. The Rams would go from the overwhelming favorites to having a real threat to their status as the top team in the conference. (And Washington, currently 5-2 and atop the NFC East, may find itself in contention for a bye week as well.)

So this week’s game between the Rams and the Saints is a very big one. It may shape what the rest of the year looks like in the NFC.

46 responses to “Rams are one win away from having a stranglehold on the NFC

  1. Home field may not be as much of an advantage if LA fans don’t stop selling their tickets on the secondary market to make a few extra bucks.

    Even in the Dodger/Red Sox game-lots of red in the stands.

  2. I can’t wait to watch this one.

    Both teams look great, but there’s a part of me that thinks the Saints have a trick up their sleeve for this one, and could beat them.

  3. Who cares at the moment. By the time playoffs come around any reliable NFC head coach will have figured out what the Rams are doing on offense even further a they were held in check for most part yesterday by a Packer team tht ha a below average defense.

    Rams have an overated defense that has been exposed and they will tae their first los at New Orleans this week.

  4. Unlike Pats, who seldom even seem to have all it’s stars healthy yet still SB every other year, a season-ending injury to just one more Ram star like Gurley would end their season. Indeed, losing any one more starter may do it as they lack depth in many areas (notably secondary). Rams were one of the luckiest teams for injuries last year – don’t expect it to continue.

    Without Kupp, they could barely squeak past a mediocre Pack, and if Kupp had been out injured before the Vikings game they’d have def lost that – despite both games at home. And way from home two pretty average teams like Seahawks and Broncos almost upset them.

    This lack of depth is why with half the season still to go coach is already highlighting concerns about keeping players healthy, and why they won’t go 16-0 as if they get to 14-0 they’ll be more keen than any team to rest guys for the playoffs.

  5. As a long suffering Rams fan, I hope we lose one of the next three…they’ll be in a better position knowing they need to ball out than coast. The Saints, Vikes and Skins are also contenders. That said, I love this team’s makeup. Coaching is first class all three phases and the players are WE not ME!!!

  6. You’d think they’d learn their lesson from last year…Don’t rest your starters! If the Pats don’t do it…you shouldn’t either!

  7. all rams owners may be in an awful pickle come fantasy playoffs…mcvay notoriously sits all starters when they have nothing to play for to avoid injury…

  8. The Rams and Saints are the top of the NFC, but let’s not kid our selves about the Redskins, they are not that good. They will eventually fall on their faces.

  9. TruthfulDolphinsFanNotWearingBlinders says:
    October 29, 2018 at 7:14 am
    it’s so ridiculous to bring up all this undefeated talk, we all know there was one perfect season in 1972 and their will never be another, right Patriots fans?

    —————-

    1972…..that is the last time the Dolphins were relevant

  10. TruthfulDolphinsFanNotWearingBlinders says:
    October 29, 2018 at 7:14 am
    it’s so ridiculous to bring up all this undefeated talk, we all know there was one perfect season in 1972 and their will never be another, right Patriots fans?
    —————————
    Well, putting aside the 1972 Phins had a shorter season and weakest strength-of-opponents, those Phins broke NFL contract rules and we now know the Dirty Don forced drugs on his players (among all his other cheating, which was legion). But there’s a bigger reason why a perfect season is almost impossible these days – Parity Rules – they didn’t have to deal with salary cap or FA in 1972. The cap alone means you have to carefully marshall your resources and can’t just stuff the team with all-stars and virtually buy SB titles like dynasties could up until the mid-90s.

  11. I hated listening to the broadcasters question Mcvays strategy of being conservative once in FG range. Mcvay was not willing to risk a turnover when they had a chance to take the lead. Yes, it was conservative….Greenbays return guy takes the risk and fumbles. Good teams don’t just win on offense….defense and special teams must play their part too. I guess this is the current state of football…SMH.

  12. Honestly, the Rams haven’t played anyone great yet. I do think they are the best team thus far in the league, but playing at New Orleans and against KC will tell a lot about how good they are. When the Pats had an undefeated regular season they played the toughest opponents in the league.

  13. tb12greatest says:
    October 29, 2018 at 9:29 am
    Honestly, the Rams haven’t played anyone great yet. I do think they are the best team thus far in the league, but playing at New Orleans and against KC will tell a lot about how good they are. When the Pats had an undefeated regular season they played the toughest opponents in the league.

    ———–

    Teams can only play the schedule they are given. 8-0 is great and they are what their record says they are. However, long way to go to talk about undefeated. Only 8 out of 19 games so far.

  14. They’re the best in the NFC, but I have a hard time believing they’d beat either KC or New England, as presently constituted.

    We’ll find out about the KC part in 3 weeks time.

  15. Who cares about undefeated?! One week at a time and, no matter how it happens ( “luck” “boneheaded plays”), a win is a win and the RAMS have 8 so far!

  16. lastl00 says:
    October 29, 2018 at 10:04 am
    The Rams have a lot of fans here in LA.
    —————————–
    Too bad none of them go to the games.

  17. The Patriots of ’07 had 7 games against teams with winning records, and no SB winning QB’s besides Rothlosberger and Peyton Manning. The Rams will have 6 on their resume come week 11 and will have already faced 4 SB winning QB’s in Rodgers and Brees along with Russell Wilson twice.

  18. The Rams D is not championship level. Their secondary is awful. They will lose more than once and no team will fear going to LA to play them in playoffs. That OL is showing a couple cracks which will bear watching. I look for the Saints to beat them rather easily this week.

  19. Let’s not forget the game yesterday. The Pak exposed the Rams defense and probably should have won the game. While it’s probably not true that a game hinges on a single play, the eyeball and gut tests will focus one’s attention on Montgomery putting his genius football I.Q. on display for the world to see. His failure to take the T.B. and his ensuing fumble T.O. is largely judged to be the deciding play. Montgomery’s genius aside, the Rams are not invincible, someone will beat them.

  20. It’s not over until it’s over. I’m going to say that either the Chiefs or the Rams will not make the Super Bowl. Maybe both. Playoff football gets nutty and all it takes for a 14-2 or 15-1 juggernaut to have a couple bad plays against a jacked up opponent and suddenly the 10-6 team is the one headed to the championship game.

  21. and their will never be another, right Patriots fans?

    Belichick and Brady ain’t retired yet. Pats are set up well for the next year or two if Brady can maintain.

    I hope the Rams go for it. Making a run for best team of all time would be cool to watch no matter which team it is.

  22. Remember the last time the Patriots played the Greatest Show On Turf, AKA The Rams in the Super Bowl? Bill B may not be perfect, but he knows how to neutralize speed. Ask the Chiefs.

  23. orndorf2 says:
    October 29, 2018 at 9:29 am
    I hated listening to the broadcasters question Mcvays strategy of being conservative once in FG range. Mcvay was not willing to risk a turnover when they had a chance to take the lead. Yes, it was conservative….Greenbays return guy takes the risk and fumbles. Good teams don’t just win on offense….defense and special teams must play their part too. I guess this is the current state of football…SMH-
    ======================================
    You got to know when to hold ’em, know when to fold ,em… Mc V got it right.

  24. I think the Rams are playing great football. The offensive playcalling has WRs and RBs running free for huge RAC yards play after play. Wade Phillips makes the calls at the right time. Although I think the defense besides the d-line is suspect due to injury.

    The crazy thing is LA fans aren’t showing up even now they are 8-0. Yesterdays game sounded like a Packers homegame with crowd noise. That’s not me trolling, that’s an honest view on what I was seeing and hearing.

  25. The Rams also have a stranglehold on LA. The LA Chargers ridiculous “fight for LA” is permanently lost. They never should have “re-located” there. Restoring San Diego Stadium and staying put would see it packed with fans now…particularly when the Chargers are playing well. Really dumb business model the NFL and Spanos put together. Really dumb. Spanos is paying rent on everything their with no permanence at all. Can’t sell as ant new owner would have to pay another $650,000,000 in relocation on top of the team price. Spanos couldn’t care less. It’s a mess.

  26. “The Patriots of ’07 had 7 games against teams with winning records, and no SB winning QB’s besides Rothlosberger and Peyton Manning…”

    I can’t tell if you’re saying this is a good thing that the Pats did or was trash and the Rams have it worse/better?

    I mean, Manning and Big Ben in their primes versus Russel Wilson and that Seahawk dumpster fire aren’t even in the same stratosphere of conversations about SB winning QBs.

  27. Grumpysal

    You mean the Seattle team that’s won 4 of 5? Patriots had a relative cakewalk through their 16-0 season. The seasons not over, but 2 teams from the NFC west will make the playoffs. How many teams had winning records in the AFC East that season? Oh yeah, none. They probably won’t finish undefeated, but neither did NE, so there’s that.

  28. Hey Rogerthat, I don’t think “neaturalize speed” means what you think it means. Brady had the ball last, that’s why they beat the chiefs. Mahomes smoked BB his “genius” like a cheap cigar. Next meeting will be in Arrowhead, and NE won’t get the ball last with the game in doubt that’s for sure.

  29. That was an awesome game, and while I would have loved to see Rodgers have a chance to lead one final drive there at Lambeau West, it wasnt meant to be. LA was hopping with sports everywhere. Weekend blast!

  30. I really don’t like the Rams much, but if they can go 16-0 and win it all so we never have to see another champagne cork popping down in Miami, I’ll be ok with that.

  31. Funny how “the Rams defense isn’t championship caliber” then tell me who’s is? NO, Minny, Philly and KC all have their defensive issues too

  32. Rams bout to run into the Juggernaut that is the Saints. Saints win and take that 1st seed from them and never look back.

  33. The Rams are one of the youngest teams in the league, a very talented young team and they only gonna keep getting better.To say they will go 16-0 is not to likely I see a 14-2 more likely.Last years early playoff loss was to a good offensive team the Falcons,they just wore out the Rams D. So thats why they went out and picked up some quality pieces on defense with some good vetern toughness to build this D up for the long haul into post season. If the Rams win home field advantage through out the plyoffs boy oh boy look out.

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