Photos from Rams’ playoff loss to Packers
The Rams’ season came to an end Saturday in a 32-18 loss to the Green Bay Packers in the NFC divisional playoffs at Lambeau Field.
Here are some of the best photos of the game from longtime Los Angeles Times photographer Wally Skalij.
Final: Rams lose to Packers in NFC divisional playoffs
The Rams’ season came to an end Saturday in a 32-18 loss to the top-seeded Green Bay Packers in the NFC divisional playoffs at Lambeau Field.
The Rams tried to rally in the second half, but they couldn’t muster another response after giving up a 58-yard touchdown pass from Aaron Rodgers to Allen Lazard in the fourth quarter.
The Packers will play the winner of Sunday’s game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New Orleans Saints in the NFC championship game on Jan. 24.
Goff completed 21 of 27 passes for 174 yards and a touchdown and running back Cam Akers closed out his rookie season with 90 yards rushing and a touchdown.
Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers completed 23 of 36 passes for 296 yards and two touchdowns. He also scrambled for a touchdown. Aaron Jones led Green Bay running backs with 99 rushing yards and a touchdown and Jamaal Williams contributed with 65 yards.
Packers 32, Rams 18: Aaron Rodgers connects with Allen Lazard on 58-yard TD
Aaron Rodgers connected with receiver Allen Lazard on a 58-yard touchdown pass with 6:52 left.
The Rams nearly ended the drive when they forced running back AJ Dillon to fumble. But the ball bounced to Rodgers.
Two plays later, Rodgers faked a handoff, and then dropped back and found Lazard behind the Rams secondary.
End of third quarter: Packers 25, Rams 18
The Rams need a comeback.
The Packers have the ball and Aaron Rodgers has not shown any signs of breaking down.
Rodgers has completed 17 of 28 passes for 206 yards and a touchdown, and he also rushed for a touchdown.
Aaron Jones has rushed for 89 yards in 11 carries.
Jared Goff has completed 15 of 17 passes for 142 yards and a touchdown for the Rams.
Packers 25, Rams 18: Cam Akers and Rams get tricky
It’s turning into the Cam Akers show for the Rams.
Akers took a direct snap out of the Wildcat formation and rushed seven yards for a touchdown. The Rams then went for a two-point conversion. Quarterback Jared Goff completed a pass to receiver Van Jefferson, and Jefferson pitched the ball to Akers, who ran to the left pylon at the goal line.
Akers has rushed for 82 yards in 16 carries.
Jared Goff has completed 15 of 17 passes for 142 yards and a touchdown. Goff’s 16-yard completion to Jefferson on a third down keyed the drive.
Packers 25, Rams 10: Aaron Jones spearheads scoring drive
Packers running back Aaron Jones is flashing the form that made him a Pro Bowl selection.
On the first play of the second half, Jones broke off a 60-yard run that helped set up his one-yard touchdown run.
The Packers’ two-point conversion attempt failed on an incomplete pass.
Jones has rushed for 85 yards in 10 carries. He also has a 14-yard reception.
Packers 19, Rams 10: Green Bay closes first half with field goal
Mason Crosby’s 39-yard field goal for the Packers as time expired in the second quarter ended a 29-second drive that featured Aaron Rodgers’ 33-yard completion to tight end Robert Tonyan.
Rodgers has completed 14 of 20 passes for 169 yards and a touchdown. He also has rushed for a touchdown.
Rams quarterback Jared Goff has shown no ill effects from his surgically repaired right thumb. He has completed nine of 10 passes for 91 yards and a touchdown.
Running back Cam Akers has rushed for 62 yards in 11 carries.
The Rams were hurt in the first half by personal foul penalties against Aaron Donald and Nsimba Webster.
Packers 16, Rams 10: Jared Goff finds Van Jefferson in end zone
Jared Goff’s four-yard touchdown pass to rookie receiver Van Jefferson in the closing seconds of the first half pulled the Rams to within six points.
Jefferson started in place of injured Cooper Kupp.
Goff’s 21-yard completion to receiver Josh Reynolds was a key play in 75-yard, nine-play drive.
Goff has completed nine of 10 passes for 91 yards and a touchdown.
Can Akers has rushed for 62 yards in 11 carries.
Packers 16, Rams 3: Aaron Rodgers gets Rams to bite on pump fake, then scores TD
Aaron Rodgers finished it himself.
On third and goal from the one, Rodgers took a snap out of the shotgun formation, got Rams edge rusher Leonard Floyd to bite on a pump fake, and then ran toward the right pylon for a touchdown late in the second quarter.
The Packers botched the extra-point attempt.
The Packers’ 47-yard drive started after Nsimba Webster was called for a personal foul.
Rodgers has completed 12 of 16 passes for 115 yards and a touchdown.
Jamaal Williams has rushed for 34 yards in seven carries.
Packers 10, Rams 3: Aaron Rodgers finds Davante Adams in end zone
Aaron Rodgers expertly engineered an 84-yard scoring drive that he capped with a one-yard touchdown pass to receiver Davante Adams.
Running backs Aaron Jones and Jamaal Williams carried the ball eight times during the 14-play drive.
Rodgers has completed seven of 11 passes for 71 yards and a touchdown.
On the touchdown pass, Adams had gone in motion right to left before turning around and motioning to the right into the end zone where Rodgers found him.
An unnecessary roughness penalty against Rams tackle Aaron Donald helped the Packers. Donald was penalized after tangling with guard Elgton Jenkins.
End of first quarter: Rams and Packers tied 3-3
With snow starting to fall at Lambeau Field, the team have traded field goals.
Rams quarterback Jared Goff has completed four of five passes for 51 yards. Cam Akers has rushed for 20 yards in five carries.
Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers is five of eight for 62 yards.
Rams and Packers tied 3-3 late in the first quarter
Jared Goff’s surgically repaired right thumb looks fine.
Goff, wearing gloves on both hands, completed passes of 28 yards to receiver Josh Reynolds and 19 yards to Robert Woods during a drive that culminated with Matt Gay’s 37-yard field goal.
Goff has completed four of five passes for 51 yards.
The Rams were going to go for it on a fourth-and-one at the 13-yard line, but left guard Austin Corbett was penalized for a false start, bring on Gay.
During the drive, running back Cam Akers took a direct snap in the Wildcat formation and rushed for two yards.
Packers take early 3-0 lead against Rams
The Packers take the early lead with a 24-yard field goal by Mason Crosby.
After the Packers forced the Rams to go three and out, Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers drove his team to the Rams four-yard line. Rodgers’ 27-yard completion to receiver Equanimeous St. Brown was the key play.
The Rams stuffed running back Aaron Jones for a one-yard loss before Rodgers missed on a pass to Marquez Valdes-Scantling. And then linebacker Troy Reeder broke up a pass, forcing the Packers to settle for the field goal.
NFL’s last-gen and next-gen QBs take center stage in divisional playoffs
Three Hall of Fame-bound quarterbacks and a question mark.
That’s the starting lineup in the divisional round of the NFL playoffs, where the remaining NFC quarterbacks are Tampa Bay’s Tom Brady, New Orleans’ Drew Brees, Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers and whichever of the walking wounded — Jared Goff or John Wolford — is able start for the Rams.
In the AFC, it’s a reunion of the Class of 2018, with three first-round quarterbacks from that draft: Buffalo’s Josh Allen, Baltimore’s Lamar Jackson and Cleveland’s Baker Mayfield, along with Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes, who was drafted in 2017 but didn’t become the Chiefs’ full-time starter until his second season.
Matt Gay has brought joy (and points) to the Rams’ kicking game
Rams coach Sean McVay smiled and then let out a whistle of excitement, and possibly relief, when asked about how kicker Matt Gay has helped his team.
“Woo. I’ll tell you what, it’s been huge. Man, he’s Mr. Automatic, as of late,” McVay said. “I think that’s something that you don’t take for granted. He’s done a great job and it looks like we found our guy for a long time, really for the future.”
It’s a luxury the Rams didn’t have earlier in the season, and one they might depend on in their NFC divisional-round road playoff game Saturday against the Green Bay Packers.
Rams will have to battle Packers — and near-freezing temperatures — today
Temperatures are in the mid-30s on a cloudy day in Green Bay, Wisc., as the Rams and Green Bay Packers get ready for kickoff in an NFC divisional-round playoff game at Lambeau Field.
The sixth-seeded Rams (11-6) advanced to play the top-seeded Packers (13-3) by defeating the Seattle Seahawks, 30-20, in a wild-card game last week. The Packers had a bye.
Jared Goff will start at quarterback for the Rams. Goff, nearly three weeks removed from right thumb surgery, has passed for 21 touchdowns, with 13 interceptions. Goff did not start against the Seahawks, but he came off the bench, passed for a touchdown and played without major error.
Receiver Cooper Kupp will not play because of bursitis in his right knee. Rookie Van Jefferson will start alongside Robert Woods and Josh Reynolds.
Defensive tackle Aaron Rodgers suffered a rib injury against the Seahawks but he is playing Saturday, and anchors a defense that gave up the fewest yards and points this season.
Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has passed for 48 touchdowns, with five interceptions. He leads and offense that averaged a league-best 38.1 points per game.
Jared Goff can show he is ‘the man’ with heroic performance at Green Bay
Shortly after being named Saturday’s starting quarterback by default, the affable Jared Goff was asked if he was irked by all the mystery.
“No,” he said tersely.
That was it. No expression. No explanation. No expounding. Just, no.
Which, given Goff’s competitive nature, probably means yes.
Hell hath no fury like a quarterback scorned, and so it is reasonable to expect Goff to decorate the frozen tundra in flames.
At least, he better.
Jalen Ramsey’s next shutdown target? Packers wide receiver Davante Adams
Former NFL safety Ryan Clark remembers meeting with Jalen Ramsey before the 2016 NFL Draft, and the two talked briefly about how an NFL team might use him.
Clark was aware of the defensive back from watching Ramsey at Florida State. But he underestimated his size until he saw him in person.
“You don’t realize how freaking big he is until you get up on him,” Clark said, chuckling. “His arms reach his knees.”
NFL divisional playoffs: Picks and predictions for each game
Sam Farmer examines the divisional-round matchups this weekend in the NFL playoffs. Last week he was 5-1 on predictions, only misfiring on Cleveland’s upset of Pittsburgh. Using point spreads with scores Farmer predicted, the record against the spread would have been 5-0-1.
Rams at Green Bay Packers
Saturday, 1:35 p.m. PT, Ch. 11
Line: Packers by 6½
Rams keys: The teams that give Aaron Rodgers problems are the ones that can bring enough pressure with four up front. Don’t give him opportunities down the field. ... Jalen Ramsey can blanket Davante Adams, but Aaron Jones cannot have a big day. ... The health of Aaron Donald is paramount. ... Rookie running back Cam Akers is huge in this, and teams can run on the Packers. ... With Jared Goff at quarterback, he needs to get the ball out of his wounded hand quickly. No sacks.
Packers keys: Take advantage of the Rams’ issues at quarterback by getting to Goff. ... Establish a running game with Jones to set up the play-action game. ... The Rams will look to do what San Francisco has done, rattling Rodgers with a heavy pass rush. ... Try to win the time-of-possession battle by controlling the ball somewhere in the range of 33-36 minutes.
Farmer’s pick: As well as the Rams’ defense is playing, picking against Aaron Rodgers at home is seldom a good idea. With their quarterback issues, it’s going to be tough for the Rams to take full advantage of a vulnerable Green Bay defense. Even with Jalen Ramsey on him, Davante Adams will have an impact.
PACKERS 27, RAMS 21
Friendly fire: It’s Rams’ Sean McVay vs. Packers’ Matt LaFleur
They coached together in the NFL in Washington, and then with the Rams.
Sean McVay and Matt LaFleur are good friends. Both say they are close as brothers.
That the Rams are playing the Green Bay Packers in the NFC divisional-round playoff game Saturday at Lambeau Field did not preclude the two head coaches from communicating this week.
“It was nothing with regards to anything football related,” McVay said. “Just kind of checking in and it’s saying, ‘Hey, it’s pretty cool and crazy that we’re getting a chance to do this.’ ”
The sixth-seeded Rams (11-6) advanced to play the top-seeded Packers (13-3) by defeating the Seattle Seahawks 30-20 in a wild-card game last Saturday in Seattle. The Packers had a bye.
Rams vs. Packers matchups: Jared Goff gets chance to step up again
Breaking down how the Rams (11-6) and Green Bay Packers (13-3) match up heading into their NFC divisional-round playoff game Saturday at Lambeau Field at 1:35 p.m. PT. (TV: Fox)
When Rams have the ball: After coming off the bench and helping lead the Rams to an NFC wild-card victory over the Seattle Seahawks, Jared Goff will start at quarterback. With John Wolford sidelined because of a neck injury, Blake Bortles will be the backup. Goff is now nearly three weeks removed from right thumb surgery.
For Rams, cold weather in Green Bay playoff game presents degrees of difficulty
The conditions were freezing — eight degrees with a wind-chill factor of minus-15 — the last time the Los Angeles Rams played a cold-weather game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field.
It was December 20, 1992, and offensive lineman Jackie Slater thought he was prepared. For warmups, he put on layers that made him look like “the Michelin Man,” he said. But after discovering he could barely move, he decided to forsake the extra gear.
During the 28-13 defeat, Slater learned something new about playing in the cold.
“I scraped the back of my hand and the skin rolled up like a chunk,” Slater said Monday during a phone interview. “Usually that would have been an abrasion. You just can’t be alarmed by those kinds of things.”
Rams’ Brandon Staley is preparing to stop Packers’ Aaron Rodgers
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers announced Tuesday that during the offseason he will be a guest host on the television show “Jeopardy!”
If the Rams had a say, Rodgers might present a clue on the quiz show that reads: “This defensive coordinator stifled the top-seeded Packers in a 2020 NFC divisional-round playoff game.”
The correct response: Who is Brandon Staley?
This week, as the Rams prepare for Saturday’s game at Lambeau Field, Staley is scheming to figure out ways to make the answer a reality by confusing a quarterback who has seen it all.
Cooper Kupp will not play for Rams against Packers
Receiver Cooper Kupp, who leads the Rams in receptions, will not play in Saturday’s NFC divisional-round playoff game against the Green Bay Packers because of a right knee issue.
Kupp left last week’s wild-card playoff victory over the Seattle Seahawks in the fourth quarter because of what coach Sean McVay described as bursitis.
Kupp did not practice this week, but McVay had said he was hopeful that Kupp would play Saturday. Rookie Van Jefferson will start in Kupp’s place.
Kupp caught 92 passes for 974 yards and three touchdowns during the regular season. He had four receptions for 78 yards in the 30-20 wild-card victory over the Seahawks.
Offensive lineman David Edwards also is inactive because of an ankle injury. Bobby Evans will start in his place.
Quarterback John Wolford, linebacker Terrell Lewis, offensive lineman Brian Allen and receiver Trishton Jackson also are inactive.