The Rams once again showed their resiliency after another week of unexpected turns that included a training trip to Colorado, the NFL’s decision to move their game from Mexico City to Los Angeles, and the aftermath of a mass shooting in Thousand Oaks and fires that forced many players, coaches and staff to evacuate their homes. Here’s what we learned from their 54-51 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs.
Don’t forget about Samson Ebukam
Much was made of the trade-deadline acquisition of edge rusher Dante Fowler, and rightly so.
But Ebukam, who had forced several fumbles this season, made three big plays against the Chiefs.
The second-year pro from Eastern Washington returned a fumble for a touchdown, returned an interception for a touchdown and hit Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, forcing an interception.
Tight ends continue to assert themselves
A week after Gerald Everett and Tyler Higbee caught touchdown passes in the same game for the first time, the two tight ends came through again.
Everett caught two touchdown passes, including one for 40 yards that provided the final margin of victory. Everett had three receptions for 49 yards.
Higbee caught six passes for 63 yards.
Josh Reynolds is not intimidated by a starting role
Reynolds, starting in place of injured receiver Cooper Kupp, caught six passes for 80 yards, including a touchdown.
Reynolds, a second-year pro, made several difficult catches.
He has 13 receptions, three for touchdowns, this season.
Punter Johnny Hekker remains invaluable
Hekker’s 68-yard punt late in the game forced the Chiefs to start their final possession at the 12-yard line.
The three-time Pro Bowl players also had kicks of 55 and 59 yards.
The Rams learned their penalty lesson
In a Week 10 victory over the Seattle Seahawks, the Rams committed 10 penalties for 102 yards, including several for late hits.
Coach Sean McVay implored his players to not repeat their mistakes, and the NFL fined Aaron Donald, Fowler and Ndamukong Suh for infractions.
While the Chiefs were penalized 13 times for 135 yards, the Rams were flagged eight times for 65 yards. The Rams did not hurt themselves with penalties after the play.
Patrick Mahomes is sensational
Mahomes lost two fumbles and had three passes intercepted, but he still showed why he is among the front-runners for league MVP.
The second-year pro passed for 478 yards and six touchdowns.
Donald stripped him of the ball twice, but Mahomes never appeared fazed.