What We Saw: Week 13

The QB List staff catches you up on everything you missed during Week 13 of the 2020 NFL season.

Rams @ Cardinals

 

The Rams won the time of possession and turnover battles to win this NFC West matchup 38-28. With the total yards gained 463-232, it’s easy to see how this game could’ve been even worse than it was. Let’s dive in and see what we can take away from this game.

 

Los Angeles Rams

 

Quarterback

 

Jared Goff: 37/47, 351 yards, 1 TD, 1 sack | 4 carries, 1 yard, 1 TD

 

Jared Goff was very efficient today and the scoreboard could’ve been even higher as they failed to score from the 1-yard line once and missed a 39-yard field goal.

The Rams trailed 7-0 when they touched the ball for the first time. On the drive, Goff connected on short passes to Robert Woods and Gerald Everett to head into Arizona territory. But starting on 2nd and 6, Goff threw 3 consecutive incompletions to turn the ball over on downs.

Following an Arizona punt, the Rams took over for their second possession. Goff completed a key 3rd and 2 pass to Cooper Kupp for 4 yards. Unfortunately, a couple of plays later on 3rd and 9, Goff took a sack and the Rams punted the ball back to the Cardinals.

Luckily for the Rams, the Cardinals’ mantra in the 1st Half was “three-and-out” and they took over just three plays later. The Rams started marching with Goff completing a 3rd and 3 pass to Tyler Higbee for a 1st Down. Two plays later, Goff hit Higbee again for 16 yards. Including that Higbee pass, Goff completed 5 passes in 6 plays picking up 41 yards. On 3rd and 4, Goff completed a 12-yard pass to Kupp and a “roughing the passer” penalty took the Rams down to the 9-yard line. Cam Akers scored the Rams’ opening touchdown on the very next play making it 7-7.

Following an awful 31-yard punt, Goff took over at their own 44-yard line. On the first play of the drive, Goff hit Kupp for a 15-yard gain. Two plays later, Goff hit Reynolds down the middle of the field for a 21-yard chunk play down to the Arizona 9. Four consecutive Cam Akers‘ runs later and the ball was again turned over on downs.

The Cardinals punted from their own 1-yard line and the Rams managed to return the punt to the Arizona 45-yard line. On the first play of the drive, Goff hit Woods for an 18-yard chunk play. Two plays later on 3rd and 10, Goff hit Woods again for 10-yards and a fresh set of downs in the red zone. Goff hit his favorite target (on this drive) Woods for a 6-yard gain and three plays later, Goff found Tyler Higbee for the score.

 

 

On the Rams’ first possession of the 2nd Half, Goff showed off the screen game as he connected with Darrell Henderson for 19-yards and 2 plays later to Malcolm Brown for 30-yards. Two plays later, on 3rd and 7, Goff appeared to connect with Woods for a 1st down, but an offensive pass interference penalty negated the gain. Goff was able to hit Kupp for 9-yards, which set up a 39-yard field goal to make it a 17-7 game.

The Rams took over following a Cardinals touchdown. Early in the drive on 3rd and 1, Goff connected with Cam Akers for a big 22-yard gain. Goff then connected with Everett, Kupp, and Jefferson to be in the red zone once again. Three plays later, Goff took it in himself for a 1-yard touchdown.

 

 

Following an Arizona touchdown after a fumble on a punt return by Nsimba Webster, the Rams were up 24-21. Goff connected with Everett on 3rd and 11 for a big 22-yard gain. He then connected with Woods and Kupp before Darrell Henderson ripped off a 38-yard run for a touchdown.

The Rams then took over in Arizona territory after a Kyler Murray fumble on a sack, but couldn’t get anything going and a missed 37-yard field goal gave the ball back to the Cardinals. But three plays later a Troy Hill pick-six put the Rams up 38-21.

 

Running Backs

 

Cam Akers: 21 carries, 72 yards, 1 TD | 1 target, 1 reception, 22 yards

Darrell Henderson: 3 carries, 49 yards, 1 TD | 3 targets, 2 receptions, 25 yards

Malcolm Brown: 3 carries, -3 yards | 1 target, 1 reception, 30 yards

 

Out of 82 offensive snaps, Cam Akers led the way by playing on 52 snaps. Darrell Henderson saw 17 and Malcolm Brown saw 13.

After weeks of playing musical chairs in the Rams’ backfield, it appears we have finally settled on Cam Akers at the lead back. He and Henderson split the work early until Henderson left with a knee injury. Akers had four carries of 7-yards or more, although one was called back on an offensive holding penalty. He also had 9 carries in the red zone, including 4 inside the 5-yard line, although he didn’t score on any of those carries. Here’s Akers’ touchdown where he wills his way into the endzone.

 

 

Henderson started the game for the Rams but touched the ball just 4 times in the 1st Half. He left the game with a knee injury but returned to the game. He played sparingly for the rest of the game only touching the ball twice in the 2nd Half. One was a 19-yard reception and the other was his monster 38-yard touchdown.

 

 

Wide Receivers/Tight Ends

 

Robert Woods: 11 targets, 10 receptions, 85 yards

Cooper Kupp: 9 targets, 8 receptions, 73 yards

Gerald Everett: 7 targets, 6 receptions, 44 yards

Van Jefferson: 5 targets, 4 reception, 27 yards

Tyler Higbee: 6 targets, 4 receptions, 24 yards, TD

Josh Reynolds: 1 target, 1 reception, 21 yards

 

Robert Woods was not affected by seeing coverage by Patrick Peterson as he saw a team-high 11 targets. He played on a wide receiver-high 61 snaps. He saw just 1 deep target and 1 red zone target. He had a second red-zone target that was negated by his own offensive pass interference penalty.

Cooper Kupp had an efficient day on 53 snaps. All of Kupp’s targets were short, but three came on 3rd down and two of those went for first downs.

The tight ends were very active today, as Higbee and Everett saw a combined 13 targets on 69 and 60 snaps, respectively. Everett had a big 22-yard gain on 3rd and 11. Higbee for his part had two big 3rd down catches. One went for a 1st down on a touchdown drive and the other was his 1-yard touchdown reception.

Van Jefferson tied his career-high in targets and receptions. He also out-snapped Reynolds 40 to 37, as the Rams rotated the two wideouts. Like the rest of the team, all of his targets were short.

Josh Reynolds caught just one ball, but it was an excellent route and excellent reception.

 

 

Arizona Cardinals

 

Quarterback

 

Kyler Murray: 21/39, 173 yards, 3 TDs, 1 INT, 2 sacks, 2 fumbles, 1 lost | 5 carries, 15 yards

 

Kyler Murray was stymied by the stout Rams defense all game. They double and triple-teamed DeAndre Hopkins and kept Murray’s rushing to a minimum.

Kyler Murray and this Arizona offense started the game off with a bang! Following two meh plays, they found themselves in a 3rd and 9. Murray was sacked on the play, but a facemask penalty gave the Cardinals new life. One play later, Murray hit a wide-open Dan Arnold for a 59-yard touchdown.

 

 

That pass was the highlight of the 1st Half for the Cardinals as they went three-and-out on their next 4 possessions. There’s not much to talk about on these possessions either. The Rams did a decent job of pressuring Murray, while also containing him in the run game.

On the Cardinals’ final possession of the 1st Half, Murray finally got the engine started again. He connected on short passes to KeeSean Johnson and Chase Edmonds before taking a deep shot for DeAndre Hopkins. The pass fell incomplete, but Hopkin’s drew a pass interference penalty on Jalen Ramsey for a 25-yard gain. The next play came with just 13 seconds to play in the half, as Murray hit Hopkins for a 9-yard gain. But the catch was reviewed and reversed. That reversal turned it from a 39-yard field goal attempt to a 48-yarder, which Zane Gonzalez missed wide left.

The Cardinals took over for their first possession of the 2nd Half and found themselves down 10. While that last dive at the half ended in a missed field goal, the momentum that they started continued as Murray completed passes to Kenyan Drake, Johnson, and a pair of passes to DeAndre Hopkins. Murray also scrambled for a 4-yard gain on 3rd and 1. Three plays later though, Murray found himself in a 4th and 12 from the Rams 40-yard line. He managed to hit Johnson for a big 12-yard gain to keep the drive alive. A couple of runs later, Murray hit Hopkins for the score.

 

 

The Rams responded with a touchdown of their own to extend the lead back to 10. To start the drive, Murray completed a pair of passes to Hopkins for a 1st down, but that’s where the drive stalled. Luckily for the Cardinals, the Rams fumbled on the punt return and gifted Arizona a short field. Two Kenyan Drake runs later and they were back to being down by 3.

After the Rams once again pushed the lead to 10, Murray started the engine again. Murray completed key 3rd down completions to Edmonds and Hopkins, but on 2nd and 7 from midfield, disaster struck.

 

 

Murray lucked out as the Rams missed a field goal with their short field. He must’ve felt bad for them though, as on 3rd and 9 he threw a pick-six.

 

 

Down 17, Chase Edmonds got the drive started with a 54-yard kickoff return. Murray connected with Hopkins, Isabella, and Hopkins again before Edmonds took a handoff 27-yards down to the 1-yard line. It took 4 plays to get into the end zone, as Dan Arnold caught his second touchdown of the game on 4th and 2.

The Cardinals tried an onside kick, but the Rams recovered it.

 

Running Backs

 

Kenyan Drake: 10 carries, 49 yards, 1 TD | 3 targets, 2 receptions, 9 yards

Chase Edmonds: 6 carries, 28 yards | 6 targets, 2 receptions, 15 yards

 

Chase Edmonds out-snapped Kenyan Drake 37 to 29. Edmonds biggest play of the game was his 54-yard kickoff return. He had one red zone carry and one carry of 7 yards. Edmonds is the primary passing-down back, so with the Cardinals playing from behind, it’s not surprising to see Edmonds on the field more often than Drake.

Kenyan Drake started the game but really struggled early, picking up just 3 yards in the 1st Half. Drake had 4 carries in the red zone and had a big 27-yard run down to the 1-yard line. Here’s Drake’s touchdown. Very impressive that he got around the corner and into the end zone.

 

 

Wide Receivers/Tight Ends

 

Dan Arnold: 3 targets, 2 receptions, 61 yards, 2 TDs

DeAndre Hopkins: 13 targets, 8 receptions, 52 yards, 1 TD

KeeSean Johnson: 4 targets, 4 receptions, 27 yards

Christian Kirk: 3 targets, 1 reception, 2 yards

Andy Isabella: 5 targets, 2 receptions, 7 yards

 

So, just to recap, that’s 2 touchdowns for Dan Arnold today on just 9 snaps. I wouldn’t go running to the waiver wire to chase these scores, but Arnold had a game to remember.

DeAndre Hopkins saw plenty of Jalen Ramsey, but that didn’t shy away Kyler Murray from looking his way. Hopkins saw a 33% target share with just one target being deep. Technically, it was an unofficial target as Hopkins drew a 25-yard pass interference penalty on Ramsey on the play. Hopkins also saw two red-zone targets, catching one for his touchdown.

KeeSean Johnson played on 45 snaps (less than both Kirk and Isabella). Johnson saw just 4 targets but caught a huge 12-yard pass on 4th and 12.

We’ve talked about this before, but Christian Kirk is a big-play threat. Two of his three targets were deep balls, but both fell incomplete. He still played on 60 of 64 snaps, but this is disappointing for fantasy purposes.

Andy Isabella is filling in for Larry Fitzgerald while he’s on the COVID list. He saw all short targets.

 

— Rich Holman (@RichardoPL83 on Twitter)

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