The Los Angeles Rams were finally able to get back in the win column thanks in part to a career day from outside linebacker Dante Fowler Jr. against the Atlanta Falcons in Week 7.
Fowler had been in the midst of a five-game drought after posting two sacks in the 2019 NFL season opener against the Carolina Panthers. Fortunately, he was finally able to get back on track with seven tackles, three sacks and a forced fumble in the 37-10 victory.
The Rams were able to secure an early lead which essentially forced the Falcons to abandon the run game early on. As a result, Fowler was able to take full advantage of this favorable matchup against a porous offensive line to register three sacks in a single game for the first time in his career.
He admits the situation allowed him take focus on his pass rush, via Stu Jackson of the team’s official website:
“I just had my ears pinned back,” Fowler said. “Offense did a good job of putting points up on the board and giving us opportunities to rush the passer, so I did a good job. Coach Henny (defensive line coach Eric Henderson) with the rush plan this week, so we executed it.”
Head coach Sean McVay also offered up some high praise for Fowler’s performance.
“Dante Fowler, what else can you say about him?” Rams head coach Sean McVay said. “To come away with three sacks (was big).”
The stellar outing from Fowler was just what this defense needed to bounce back from an abysmal few weeks that left them exposed and dealing with multiple key injuries. There is no question that defensive coordinator Wade Phillips will be relying heavily on the few remaining healthy pieces to keep this group afloat until they return to full strength.
Among the notable issues that have plagued the defense this season was their inability to capitalize on the attention that defensive tackle Aaron Donald was garnering upfront by getting double and triple-teamed. Fortunately, it appears Fowler is finally starting to find a rhythm alongside Donald on the edge once again.
His spectacular performance was a familiar sight for cornerback Jalen Ramsey after the two were reunited following the trade with the Jacksonville Jaguars heading into Week 7. The pair of former Jaguars are now looking to help lead a potential resurgence as key members of the Rams defense.
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