How the NFC West Was Won – Week 4: Rams register impressive win
Maybe the Los Angeles Rams are for real.
Sean McVay’s upstart team hit the road and beat the Cowboys in Dallas to highlight Week 4 in the NFC West.
Arizona had to work overtime to beat San Francisco, while Seattle pulled away from the Indianapolis Colts late to notch win No. 2 on the year.
Here’s a closer look at what went down in the NFC West this week.
Arizona Cardinals 18, San Francisco 49ers 15 (OT)
If you like watching games that 69 minutes and 28 seconds without a touchdown, this one was for you.
San Francisco’s Robbie Gould and Arizona’s Phil Dawson traded field goals through regulation, and the 49ers took a 15-12 lead in overtime on Gould’s fifth make of the game, capping a 17-play, 73-yard drive that took 7:36 off the clock. But the Cardinals would answer. Carson Palmer would lead them on a 75-play drive of their own, culminating in a 19-yard touchdown pass to Larry Fitzgerald with 32 seconds left in the extra period.
The win was Arizona’s second overtime triumph this season — it’s the first time they’ve had two extra-time wins in the same season since 2011, when they went 4-0 in such contests.
Stat of the Game (Arizona): The Cardinals won despite allowing six sacks and 16 quarterback hits on Palmer. It’s only the Cardinals’ second win since 2010 in a game in which they’ve allowed six or more sacks. The other came in 2014, when the Seattle Seahawks sacked Carson Palmer seven times in a game Arizona won, 19-3.
Stat of the Game (San Francisco): The 49ers converted only 26 percent (5-of-19) of their third-down opportunities.
He Said It (Arizona): “It’s Larry Time. At that point of the game, you’re looking for every play in the book that’s on the sheet that’s ‘how can I get this ball to Larry.'” — Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians on the final play to future Hall-of-Famer Larry Fitzgerald.
He Said It (San Francisco): “I was disappointed. I thought we had opportunities to win the game on both sides of the ball. We didn’t get it done. It was disappointing.” — 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan
What’s Next for the Cardinals: Now 2-2, the Cardinals hit the road to face Philadelphia Sunday morning at 10 a.m. at Lincoln Financial Field.
What’s Next for the 49ers: San Francisco visits the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium Sunday morning at 10 a.m. Interestingly enough, the Colts will have played the entire NFC West by Week 5.
Los Angeles Rams 35, Dallas Cowboys 30
Jared Goff passed for 255 yards and two touchdowns, Greg Zuerlein kicked seven field goals and Todd Gurley had another monster game with 215 scrimmage yards and a touchdown as the Rams scored their most impressive win of the year in Big D.
The Rams (3-1) took their first lead late in the third quarter when Goff hooked up with Gurley on a 53-yard touchdown pass that made the score 26-24. Zuerlein booted field goals from 28 and 43 yards to pad L.A.’s lead to eight points with under 10 minutes to play. The Cowboys (2-2) had a chance to tie the game when Dak Prescott hit James Hanna on a 28-yard touchdown pass with 7:11 to go, but their two-point conversion attempt failed as Prescott couldn’t hit Terrance Williams in the back of the end zone. Zuerlein added a 33-yard field goal at the two-minute warning. Dallas had one more chance, and advanced into Rams’ territory, but their fourth-down play that needed 10 yards only got nine on a completion to Ezekiel Elliott.
Stat of the Game: Gurley’s 215 yards from scrimmage and 94 receiving yards were both career highs.
He Said It: “It’s only the beginning. We’ve been here last year at 3-1 and only won one game after that so we got to keep that in mind as well. We’ve definitely got to keep moving forward and just get better every week and don’t get complacent.” — Running back Todd Gurley
What’s Next for the Rams: The Rams host the Seattle Seahawks Sunday at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
Seattle Seahawks 46, Indianapolis Colts 18
The Indianapolis Colts won’t be applying for membership in the NFC West any time soon.
The Colts lost their third game in as many matchups against NFC West foes Sunday night in Seattle.
Russell Wilson threw for 295 yards and two touchdowns and the Seattle defense scored two defensive touchdowns in a rout over the Colts (1-3).
The game was actually tied 18-18 with under five minutes to play in the third quarter when Indianapolis kicker Adam Vinatieri connected on a 40-yard field goal. That’s when things changed. Rapidly.
J.D. McKissic scored on a 30-yard touchdown run just 2:41 later, and 13 seconds after that, Bobby Wagner scooped up a Jacoby Brissett fumble and motored 21 yards for another score. Seattle tacked on two fourth-quarter scores on Wilson touchdown passes to win going away and even their record at 2-2.
McKissic was a big factor late for Seattle. He got an opportunity Sunday night because of injuries to running backs Thomas Rawls, C.J. Prosise and Chris Carson, and took full advantage. His 27-yard touchdown catch in double coverage ended the scoring on the night.
Stat of the Game: Despite being beat up at running back and having season-long issues on the offensive line, the Seahawks ran for a season-high 194 yards, averaging 5.9 yards per attempt.
He Said It: “It was a blast to get back to playing Seahawks football.” — Seattle head coach Pete Carroll
What’s Next for the Seahawks: A trip to Los Angeles and a date with the first-place Rams at the L.A. Coliseum Sunday afternoon.
Offensive Player of the Week: Todd Gurley, RB, Los Angeles Rams – Gurley looks rejuvenated under new head coach Sean McVay and had a 215-yard day Sunday, including 94 in the passing game.
Defensive Player of the Week: Bobby Wagner, LB, Seattle Seahawks – Wagner had six total tackles, half a sack, three quarterback hits and a fumble return for a touchdown that gave the Seahawks a two-touchdown lead in the fourth quarter.
Special Teams Player of the Week: Greg Zuerlein, K, Los Angeles Rams – Seven field goals against the Cowboys. Zuerlein is a perfect 14-for-14 on field goal attempts this season. He had 19 field goals all last season.
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