In the last game the Rams played without Sean McVay as the head coach, L.A. lost to the Cardinals, 44-0. Since then, the Rams have not lost to the Cardinals again.
Under McVay, the Rams have an 8-0 record against the Cardinals. And the outcomes generally haven’t been close. The narrowest margin was seven points. The Rams have generated more than 30 in seven of the eight games. Final scores include five blowouts: 33-0, 32-16, 34-0, 31-9, and 34-7.
The total point differential in those games? Rams 251, Cardinals 91.
So why have the McVay Rams so thoroughly mastered their rivals in Arizona?
“Our players have played well,” McVay told reporters on Thursday, before pivoting to the perfunctory coachspeaking praise of every opponent. “This is a really good team. They’re obviously playing really well this year. They’ve got a lot of playmakers in all three phases. They’ve got great schemes. I don’t know that there’s really an answer other than when we’ve played them, our guys have found a way to deliver in that three-hour window and do an excellent job coming away with the wins. But we all know this, and you guys know how I feel, what’s happened in previous years has zero to do with what we’re going to try to do on Sunday. Those things have no merit. It doesn’t do anything for us. We just got to make sure that we prepare the right way moving forward and try to do everything we can to put another good performance together.”
The preparation includes coming up with a way to slow down MVP candidate Kyler Murray. However, as Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald explained last year, the Rams have plenty of experience when it comes to dealing with mobile quarterbacks, thanks to the presence of Russell Wilson in the division since 2012.