Studs and duds from Rams’ ugly Week 1 loss to Bills

·4 min read

The Bills marched into SoFi Stadium as the Super Bowl favorites and humbled the Rams on their home field to open the season. It’s not the way the Rams expected to start the season, but they’d probably rather get a game like this out of the way in Week 1 instead of in the playoffs.

As you’d expect from a 31-10 loss, there weren’t many positives to take away from the game. The ratio of studs to duds is lopsided in the wrong way, but at least it’s only one game.

Here are our best and worst performers from Thursday night’s blowout in Inglewood.

Stud: Troy Hill

Hill missed a couple of tackles in the open field, particularly on third down against Devin Singletary in the second half, but he also made one of the plays of the game to pick off Josh Allen and set up the Rams for a field goal.

He certainly wasn’t the reason the Rams defense was picked apart by Buffalo, and had it not been for that interception, the Bills likely would’ve put up even more points against the Rams.

Stud: Bobby Wagner

Wagner looked the part in his first game as a Ram, stepping up in exactly the way Los Angeles expected him to. He showed good instincts in the middle of the field, reading plays perfectly to make stops in the open field.

He also had a sack on a blitz up the middle, and made a terrific play on a second-half screen pass where he diagnosed the play, cut through the traffic and brought down Singletary.

Stud: Cooper Kupp

What else is there to say about Kupp? He didn’t miss a beat coming from last season, dominating again in Week 1 against the Bills. His first-half touchdown reception was especially good, tapping his toes in the back of the end zone for six.

Kupp is clearly still Stafford’s favorite target, and that’s not likely to change all year. He seems on pace for another season of 100-yard games and double-digit touchdowns.

Dud: The entire offensive line

David Edwards was one of the many Rams linemen getting pushed back and beat by the Bills’ defensive front. He was called for a false start on the opening drive and later in the first half, he allowed an easy sack to Jordan Phillips after getting beat on a spin move.

However, he didn’t give up seven sacks by himself. The entire offensive line was a mess, allowing pressure on seemingly every dropback by Stafford. Joe Noteboom was beat by Von Miller a few times, which is to be expected. Greg Rousseau beat Rob Havenstein for a sack of his own, and Phillips was dominant no matter who he lined up against.

Dud: Jalen Ramsey

It wasn’t Ramsey’s best night in coverage, and not just because of Stefon Diggs. He was fooled on Gabriel Davis’ opening touchdown, coming up to rush Allen on a play where it seemed he should’ve been back in coverage. He also got beat by Diggs on third down in the first half, an admittedly filthy route and throw between Allen and Diggs.

The icing on the cake was a 53-yard touchdown allowed by Ramsey to Diggs, getting beat deep in coverage on a play where it looked like he expected safety help. All around, it was a bad night for Ramsey.

It’s still early in the year and Ramsey didn’t have a full offseason of work, so don’t expect this to be the norm from No. 5.

Dud: Allen Robinson

Where in the world was Robinson tonight? He was targeted only once by Stafford, catching that pass for a 12-yard gain. For a player the Rams were so excited about, and a guy who was expected to make a difference in this offense, he was nowhere to be found on offense. Maybe it’s a lack of trust and chemistry, but Robinson wasn’t involved at all tonight.

Dud: Cam Akers

It was a similar story with Akers. Not only did Darrell Henderson Jr. get the start, but Akers barely played. He carried it three times for zero yards and wasn’t targeted once in the passing game. Five targets went Henderson’s way, and he had 12 carries for 45 yards, outsnapping Akers by a wide margin.

We’ll see if this changes in the coming weeks, but it looks like Henderson’s backfield right now.

Dud: Matthew Stafford

Can we just blame the elbow? Because this was an ugly showing from the Rams’ starting quarterback. Granted, he had a split-second to throw on most of his dropbacks, but he looked rusty in his season debut.

He threw three interceptions, two of which were just terrible throws. The first was way behind Tyler Higbee, and the second was on a pass that sailed on him after attempting to throw a no-look dart to Kupp over the middle.

Stafford did make a couple of good throws, specifically on Kupp’s touchdown, but there was far more bad than good in this game.

Story originally appeared on Rams Wire