LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles Rams coach Sean McVay felt the strain. So did quarterback Jared Goff. Regardless of producing back-to-back division titles for the first time in almost 4 many years, each coach and quarterback knew the outcomes that matter most are these produced in the playoffs.
Final season, they fell flat in a wild-card loss to the Atlanta Falcons.
On Saturday, in entrance of a boisterous, bought-out and star-studded crowd on the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, McVay executed a masterful sport plan in a 30-22 win over the Dallas Cowboys in their NFC divisional spherical sport.
The Rams now await the winner of the divisional-spherical matchup Sunday between the NFC’s high-seeded New Orleans Saints and the Philadelphia Eagles earlier than they make their first look in an NFC Championship Sport since 2001.
The playoff victory Saturday was a first for the 32-year-previous McVay, who in his second season as coach has not too long ago been in the highlight as groups across the NFL fill head teaching vacancies in an apparent try to replicate the explosive offense, and in a single day success, that McVay has produced in L.A.
Towards the Cowboys, Goff returned to the environment friendly and efficient kind he displayed in the first 11 weeks earlier than he hit a late-season droop. In his first playoff win, the third-yr quarterback accomplished 15 of 28 passes for 186 yards. He additionally rushed for a vital first down late in the fourth quarter to ice the sport.
But it surely was McVay’s savvy in abandoning his signature excessive-flying offense, as a substitute relying closely on the run, towards a Cowboys protection that final week decisively shut down the NFL’s high speeding workforce in the Seattle Seahawks, that won the sport. The Rams piled up 273 yards speeding Saturday.
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After spending the ultimate two video games of the common season sidelined due to irritation in his left knee, Todd Gurley appeared recent and quick. Gurley rushed for 115 yards and a landing. And veteran backup C.J. Anderson, whom the Rams signed on Dec. 18 to present depth to an harm-struck place group, continued his late-season dominance. Anderson rushed for a mixed 299 yards in the ultimate two video games of the common season, then offered an ideal complement to Gurley, pounding the ball Saturday to decide up 123 yards and two scores towards the Cowboys.
On Sunday, the Rams will watch the Saints and Eagles’ divisional spherical sport, figuring out whichever workforce they face has defeated them earlier than. Drew Brees and the Saints dealt the Rams their first lack of the season in Week 9, when the Rams couldn’t overcome a 21-point deficit. After which the Eagles, in Week 15 behind Nick Foles, handed the Rams their second straight loss. They fell to the Bears in Week 14.
However on Saturday, the Rams proved the Tremendous Bowl-or-bust discuss wasn’t hype they usually have what it takes to win in the playoffs. Now, the strain mounts once more, as they’re one win away from their season-lengthy aim of an look in the Tremendous Bowl.