Jared Goff wasn’t good enough to dress for this team? Really?
Congratulations, Los Angeles, you have an NFL team again. Maybe you’ll see them score this season. The Los Angeles Rams put forth a deplorable performance in their first regular-season game since moving from St. Louis. The Rams got shut out by the San Francisco 49ers, 28-0.
Quarterback Case Keenum was 17-of-35 for 130 yards and two interceptions. Running back Todd Gurley, the only difference maker on the Rams’ offense, had no room to run and finished with 47 yards on 17 carries.
It was unspeakably ugly.
And Goff watched it all from the bench, in street clothes. The Rams’ No. 1 overall pick isn’t even the team’s backup quarterback yet. He’s No. 3 behind Case Keenum and Sean Mannion. That’s the same Keenum who didn’t break 100 yards passing until the final five minutes of Monday night’s game. Even though the Rams gave up a ton in a trade to move up to No. 1 overall and draft Goff, and No. 2 overall pick Carson Wentz started for the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 1 and looked good, Goff isn’t ready to even be Los Angeles’ backup. Or, the coaching staff understood how awful the rest of the offense is and decided to not put Goff in the middle of it.
Fisher said this past week that Goff might be the backup in Week 2, which is an odd change of heart, but whatever. The Rams’ woes go far deeper than just quarterback.
The Rams played one of the worst offensive games you’ll see in the NFL. The 49ers’ defense is good, especially in the front seven, but the Rams were incompetent. Here were the Rams’ drives on Monday: punt, punt, punt, interception, punt, punt, punt, punt, punt, punt, interception, punt, turnover on downs, end of game. And yet, as recently as a few weeks ago the story was that Rams management wanted to give contract extensions to coach Jeff Fisher and general manager Les Snead.
The icing on the Rams’ rotten cake came in the fourth quarter when All-Pro Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald shoved 49ers receiver Quinton Patton in the face, made contact with an official, got ejected and then slammed his helmet down on the ground. That’s the most fight the Rams showed all night. It’s also the kind of undisciplined slop that has been too common in Fisher’s four-plus seasons.
After that penalty, the 49ers finished the drive with another touchdown to take a 28-0 lead. At that point the Rams had 10 punts and seven first downs. They had 133 yards on offense and 102 penalty yards. They added a few more yards and first downs in garbage time, but that won’t fool anyone.
The 49ers got a nice win in coach Chip Kelly’s first game. Carlos Hyde had a couple touchdowns, and the defense didn’t give up anything. We’ll see if the 49ers are a lot better than anyone expected this season, or if it was just the Rams being that bad. The latter seems like the better answer.
Maybe Goff will get a chance to play soon, which shouldn’t be a question about the top overall pick, but it is for the Rams. He won’t save the offense — I’m not sure if any quarterback could, much less a rookie who isn’t ready — but at least he might make the Rams interesting. Just being watchable would be an improvement from what we saw Monday night.
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