Follow along with The TImes as we track all the action from Week 2.
RAMS (1-0) VS. REDSKINS(0-1)
When Rams have the ball
The Rams will try to build on their impressive Week 1 performance against Indianapolis, when quarterback Jared Goff played with efficiency and the rebuilt receiving corps showed its diverse skills. Goff aims to play with the same confidence that helped him complete 21 of 29 passes for 306 yards and a touchdown, without a turnover. Rookie Cooper Kupp was one of four Rams to gain 50 yards or more receiving. Sammy Watkins showed he can be as effective on short- and mid-range routes as he is on deep patterns. The offensive line — and coach-play caller Sean McVay — gave Goff plenty of time to throw. The challenge this week: opening holes for running back Todd Gurley. The second-year pro showed his receiving skills against the Colts, but had only 40 yards in 19 carries and has not eclipsed 100 yards rushing in a game since 2015. Washington gave up 356 yards in a season-opening loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. Cornerback Josh Norman likes to talk and is one of the best at his position. Former USC standout Su’a Cravens will sit out what would have been a Coliseum homecoming because he is dealing with personal issues.
When Washington has the ball
The Rams got a break last week when journeyman quarterback Scott Tolzien played in place of Andrew Luck. No similar luck for the Rams on Sunday: They will face Kirk Cousins, who developed into one of the NFL’s top passers under the tutelage of McVay, Washington's offensive coordinator for the previous three seasons. Cousins completed 23 of 40 passes for 240 yards and a touchdown, with one interception, against the Eagles. With DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon having left as free agents, Cousins is passing to Terrelle Pryor, Jamison Crowder, Ryan Grant and Josh Doctson, though Doctson was limited in practice this week and is questionable because of a hamstring injury. Running back Rob Kelley had 30 yards in 10 carries against the Eagles, and Chris Thompson caught four passes for 52 yards. Cousins also has reliable weapons in tight ends Jordan Reed and Vernon Davis. The Rams defense returned two interceptions for touchdowns and produced a safety against the Colts, and should be stronger with the return of lineman Aaron Donald, who ended his holdout last week. The plan, McVay said, is for Donald to start. Cornerback Kayvon Webster suffered a shoulder injury against the Colts and his status for Sunday is questionable. Nickell Robey-Coleman could move from slot corner to start opposite Trumaine Johnson.
When they kick
Johnny Hekker of the Rams probably will have an extra bounce in his step after signing an extension that included $10 million in guarantees and makes him the NFL’s highest-paid punter. The deal was announced a few days after Hekker put all five of his punts inside the 20-yard line against the Colts, including kicks to the six-, seven- and 10-yard lines. Greg Zuerlein made all three field-goal attempts and all extra-points tries. Tavon Austin looks to bounce back after muffing a punt last week. Dustin Hopkins is the Washington kicker, Tress Way the punter and Bashaud Breeland the kick returner.
Gary Klein’s prediction
If Cousins still had Jackson and Garcon as targets this might be a different story. But they moved on — as did McVay, Cousins’ quarterback whisperer. McVay knows Jay Gruden’s tendencies and Gruden knows McVay’s, but the advantage goes to a Rams team playing on its home turf.
Rams 30, Washington 20