Brendan Abban | September 11th, 2019
The Los Angeles Rams kicked off the season with a 1-0 record after a win over the Carolina Panthers. However, things do not get any easier for the Rams this week. Their next opponents are the New Orleans Saints seeking revenge.
The NFC championship game last year between the Rams and Saints was arguably the most controversial game of the year. Particularly, since a Super Bowl berth was on the line. A missed call by the referees played a big role in what led to a Rams win.
The sequence on the #Saints sideline after the #Rams no-call pass interference that should’ve ended the game is heart wrenching. pic.twitter.com/mYJ2smOObZ
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) January 24, 2019
The Saints highlighted this game on their schedule once the schedule came out. It is a revenge game for the Saints looking to show every reason why they should have been the ones to play in the Super Bowl. Ironically, the Rams are not only a key game on the Saints’ schedule.
Rather, every team on their schedule has them pegged. The Rams are in a position that they have not been familiar with since 2001. They are the reigning conference champions. With that title comes prestige and also willing challengers.
The Super Bowl champion and runner-up are the two standards of success that each team measures themselves against each season. The New England Patriots have recently been to the Super Bowl so many times that they are etched in as the current NFL standard.
This is a big reason as to why a lot of Bill Belichick’s former coaches and players get jobs. Teams want to duplicate the Patriots culture and success. The past year shows a similar trend with Rams head coach Sean McVay.
This offseason Matt LaFleur, a former McVay offensive coordinator was hired to be the Green Bay Packers head coach. His former quarterback’s coach Zac Taylor is now the head coach of the Cincinnati Bengals. This is the NFL acknowledging the success of McVay and the Rams.
This level of respect comes with the burden of a different team trying to knock them off each week. They got over the Panthers hurdle but the Saints will arguably be their toughest foe of the season. McVay spoke on this during a presser:
“They’re going to be a great challenge. Their offense has consistently been one of the best units in the league over the last handful of years since Sean (Payton) and Drew (Brees) have been there.”
A game that similar to last year, could have playoff implications. It will definitely be one of the marquee matchups everyone will have their eyes on.
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