Highlights & Takeaways From Rams’ Week 2 Loss To 49ers

Originally published by RamsNewswire.com

Similar to Week 1, not many people gave the Los Angeles Rams much of a chance in Week 2 when they hosted the division-rival San Francisco 49ers.

The Rams shocked the world in Week 1 when they went on the road and dominated the Seattle Seahawks. They looked to build off that in Week 2, although the 49ers are obviously in a completely different tier as one of the best teams in the league and showed that with a 30-23 win to drop the Rams to 1-1 on the season.

Despite the loss though, there still were a ton of positives to take away for L.A., who was in the game the whole afternoon and could have come away with a win if not for some key mistakes.

Let’s focus on what the Rams did well though because there was a lot of that, especially on the offensive side of the ball.

With Cam Akers being inactive, Kyren Williams was the Rams’ lead back and again found the end zone twice for L.A. Williams carried the ball 14 times for 52 yards while also adding six receptions and 48 yards, showing he can be a duel threat for the Rams.

He unfortunately had a costly drop in the third quarter when the Rams were driving and on the verge of scoring. It led to an interception and the Rams were never really able to recover against a tough 49ers team.

The real star of the game though was wide receiver Puka Nacua, who continued the historic start to his career. Matthew Stafford targeted Nacua a ridiculous 20 times and the rookie hauled in 15 receptions for 147 yards, continuing to step up in the absence of Cooper Kupp.

Nacua’s 15 receptions were the most ever in a game for a rookie. Additionally, he is the first player to record 25 receptions in his first two career games and also the first player with at least 10 catches and 100 receiving yards in each of those games.

It wasn’t just Nacua though as Tutu Atwell had another quality game, finishing with seven catches for 77 yards. While it came in a losing effort, the Rams have to be very happy with what they saw from their two young receivers once again, especially with Kupp eventually expected back in the mix.

Stafford finished with two interceptions although neither of them were really his fault. When watching Stafford this season compared to last, it is easy to see how much healthier he is as he is slinging the ball all around the field for two weeks. The Rams’ offensive line has also done a nice job keeping him upright as Stafford has only been sacked once so far on the season.

While there was a ton of good stuff on offense for the Rams on Sunday, the defense left much to be desired. The Rams have one of the youngest defenses in the league and although guys are competing and learning every week, it’s too early to expect them to a slow down a high-powered offense like the 49ers.

The Rams’ defensive struggles started on the ground as they again were unable to tackle Christian McCaffrey and Deebo Samuel. San Francisco rushed for 159 yards and three touchdowns on the day.

When Brock Purdy is playing mistake-free football and the Rams aren’t able to get much of a pass rush (they only had one sack on the day), it’s gonna be tough to get enough stops to win the game and that’s exactly what happened.

The Rams did force four punts on the day though, so the defense is clearly making progress and will be better than people think this season.

Up next for the Rams…

The Rams will get an extra day off this week as they don’t play until Monday night in Week 3 when they travel to take on Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati Bengals in a Super Bowl LVI rematch.

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