The second of reality has arrived.
Tonight, Matthew Stafford will likely be bare. And NFL America will likely be watching.
Stafford, the Los Angeles Rams quarterback, may have nowhere to cover. Higher but, there will likely be nobody to go the blame onto, both.
This will likely be about Stafford. His current. His previous. And his future. The Rams host the Arizona Cardinals within the closing Wild Card sport at SoFi Stadium in L.A.
And in contrast to Saturday and Sunday, there is only one sport. There will likely be undivided consideration for this contest between division rivals.
For each groups, they must both win or go residence. Therefore, there’s monumental strain on either side.
However nobody — and we imply nobody — has extra strain on them than Stafford.
He has to win. There’s no different manner round it.
If he doesn’t, folks will acknowledge that his previous failures can’t solely be blamed on enjoying for the Detroit Lions.
Sadly for Rams followers, Stafford has seemed extra like that QB than the Messiah he was promised to be. The truth is, he was dangerous to finish the season. Stafford had extra turnovers than a bakery within the closing three video games — seven interceptions and a fumble
The very fact stays that the Rams have been simply 6-5 in video games he threw an INT this season.
In his three postseason video games, Stafford is 0-3 with 4 TDs and three picks. Not a reasonably image.
After all, Stafford downplayed the magnitude of the sport. “Each time I step on the sphere I’m proving myself, whether or not it’s a preseason sport or a regular-season sport, follow, a playoff sport” Stafford informed the media. “I wish to go on the market and play nicely. That is simply one other alternative to do this.”
The final time we noticed Stafford, he was throwing a game-losing interception to the San Francisco 49ers at residence. It helped the 49ers come again from a 17-0 deficit on the street, an inconceivable feat to safe a playoff spot.
For Stafford, it was one other day on the workplace stuffed with errors and dangerous choices.
That may’t occur tonight.
Stafford has to play nicely and the Rams must win.
The Rams have been constructed to get to the Tremendous Bowl, not bow out within the first playoff sport.
If it have been to occur, there could be hell to pay.
Stafford has NEVER received a playoff sport. However the story was that it wasn’t Stafford’s fault. It was the group, the overall managers, the coaches and most of all, the inferior rosters he performed with.
When he was acquired from the Detroit Lions for a king’s ransom – together with two future first spherical picks – the Rams dubbed him because the lacking piece, a QB who could make all of the throws.
And Stafford acquired off to an important begin. The Rams began 7-1. For the season, he threw for 4,886 yards (third-most in NFL) and had a career-high-tying 41 touchdowns (second within the league) over 17 video games.
However the Rams went a disappointing 5-4 within the closing 9 video games. Stafford was an enormous supply of their woes and completed the season with the league-lead in INTS with 17, tied with rookie Jacksonville QB Trevor Lawrence.
There’s no manner of getting round the truth that Stafford will likely be in comparison with Jared Goff, the QB L.A. dumped. In spite of everything, Goff acquired the Rams to the Tremendous Bowl, however misplaced.
The expectation is for Stafford to not solely get the Rams there, however win the entire ball of wax.
And this isn’t an infinity course of. The Rams have a closing window. Time is ticking on this group at the moment assembled. Groups get previous and worse rapidly.
The proper instance is the Rams’ protection. Final season, the Rams had the No. 1 protection coming into the postseason. This yr, it was seventeenth, center of the pack.
That’s the place the quarterback comes into play.
Rams’ coach Sean McVay is all in on Stafford. The 2 are tied on the hip. If Stafford doesn’t ship the final word prize for the group, McVay may have stink on him, too.
And regardless of his quarterback dangerous playoff resume and turnover- stuffed end to the season, McVay is standing by Stafford, 33.
“I feel that he’s acquired a longtime resume,” McVay informed the media. “I feel that’s one thing you need to have the ability to do (show he can win a playoff sport).
“He was instrumental in main us to our first divisional title that we’ve had since ’18 and that’s a giant deal, however now it’s the subsequent step.”
One Stafford higher not locate.