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Kai Forbath continues Rams’ streak of kicking woes in loss to Dolphins

Rams head coach Sean McVay watches his team during the second half against the Miami Dolphins.
Rams coach Sean McVay watches from the sideline during the second half of a 28-17 loss to the Miami Dolphins on Sunday. McVay is still facing issues when it comes to kicker reliability.
(Wilfredo Lee / Associated Press)

The Rams’ kicking problems, intended to be solved when they replaced rookie Samuel Sloman with veteran Kai Forbath, continued Sunday in a 28-17 defeat to the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami.

Forbath kicked a 23-yard field goal near the end of the first half, but badly missed a 48-yard attempt in the fourth quarter that would have put the Rams in position to possibly tie the score with a touchdown and two-point conversion.

Forbath, a ninth-year pro, was signed Oct. 20 from the Chicago Bears practice squad because Sloman had several kicks blocked in the first seven games. Sloman was released last week. Forbath is guaranteed to be paid for three games.

Last week, the Rams signed kicker Austin MacGinnis to the practice squad. MacGinnis, who played in the Alliance of American Football and the XFL, lost a competition against Sloman and Canadian League veteran Lirim Hajrullahu during training camp.

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Jared Goff threw two interceptions and lost the ball on two fumbles to put the Rams in a huge early hole in their 28-17 loss to the Miami Dolphins.

The Rams’ punt coverage until also struggled against the Dolphins. Jakeem Grant returned a punt 88 yards for a touchdown.

Ramsey sidelined

Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey did not play because of illness, coach Sean McVay said.

“He woke up this morning, he had an illness. Went through the protocols,” McVay said. “He will be able to return home with us and that’s really all I can say. ... He’s in good enough shape to return with us.”

Second-year pro David Long started in place of Ramsey, a three-time Pro Bowl selection who signed a $105-million extension before the season.

Safety John Johnson said players were not sure, all the way up to kickoff, whether Ramsey would play.

The Dolphins’ defensive game plan Sunday was similar to one the Patriots used to stop the Rams in the Super Bowl two seasons ago. Of course, these Miami coaches came from that New England staff.

“Jalen brings that energy, that big hit, big deflection,” Johnson said. “That confidence, just that raw energy that you can’t really duplicate.”

Long gave up a touchdown pass to receiver DeVante Parker in the first quarter that tied the score 7-7. He finished with three tackles.

“David did a great job,” Johnson said. “Gave up a touchdown but he was right there. It was a 50-50 ball.”

Rapp shines

Dolphins running back Myles Gaskin is tackled by Rams safety Taylor Rapp.
Dolphins running back Myles Gaskin is tackled by Rams safety Taylor Rapp (24) and middle linebacker Micah Kiser (59) during the second half of the Rams’ loss Sunday.
(Wilfredo Lee / Associated Press)

Safety Taylor Rapp made several aggressive plays that provided the Rams with opportunities, but the offense failed to capitalize.

In the second quarter, Rapp hit running back Myles Gaskin, forcing his former University of Washington teammate to fumble.

“He was coming with some heat,” Johnson said. “I know he went to school with Gaskin so maybe he had a little steam he wanted to let off.”

In the fourth quarter, Rapp broke up a third-down pass to Gaskin, forcing a punt that gave the Rams the ball with 6 minutes 30 seconds left. Forbath missed a field-goal attempt on the ensuing drive.

The heat was on

The temperature was 86 degrees at kickoff but with 73% humidity it felt hotter on the Rams sideline.

Johnson said a couple of players said the heat felt “heavy,” but that NFL players are accustomed to playing in unpredictable conditions.

Breaking down the notable numbers behind the Rams’ 28-17 loss to Miami Dolphins on Sunday.

Asked if his team was drained by the high temperatures, McVay said, “We were drained because of the types of situations that we put ourselves in as a result of our execution. The heat was a factor because we allowed it to be based on how we played the game.”

Etc.

Running back Darrell Henderson left because of a hip injury after rushing for 47 yards in eight carries, and catching a pass for 11 yards. ... Defensive lineman Aaron Donald sacked Tua Tagovailoa on the first series, causing a fumble that led to a touchdown. Donald has nine sacks. ... Receiver Cooper Kupp caught 11 passes for 110 yards.


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