Glendale / Munich – There is a lot to win, but also a lot to lose: In the division duel of NFC West, the Arizona Cardinals (8-7) receive the last on Sunday (from 10:15 p.m. in the live stream on ran.de) Matchday of the regular season of the NFL the Los Angeles Rams (9-6).
Two wild card places in the playoffs are still available in the NFC. Three teams fight for the ticket: the Rams, the Cardinals and the Chicago Bears, who are challenged at the same time against the Green Bay Packers (during the live stream on ran.de in overlays).
Both Arizona and Los Angeles can do it on their own. (NFL: Results and Tables)
ran.de looks at the duel between the two teams.
Arithmetic games: the way to the playoffs
The calculation is relatively simple. Three teams want to go to the playoffs, and whoever wins moves into the postseason. So the Rams, Cardinals and Bears have it in their own hands.
The task for Chicago against the Packers is then again a big hurdle. If the Bears lose, both teams from NFC West could even make it into the playoffs. But only if the Cardinals win the direct duel.
Arizona has the worst starting position of the three teams, is eighth with the same record as the Bears and is therefore currently not in the playoffs. One defeat for the Bears wouldn’t be enough for the Cardinals if they didn’t win themselves.
The most important personal details and stories
Rams have to do without their leader
The Los Angeles Rams have to do without their quarterback Jared Goff for the second time this season. He broke his thumb in the game against the Seattle Seahawks last week (9:20 loss).
But: The 26-year-old has been in a performance gap in the last few weeks. The balance of the last three games: only 61.5 percent received passes, three touchdowns, plus three interceptions. The Rams only scored 17.7 points in these three games.
Two weeks ago there was the embarrassing bankruptcy against the New York Jets (20:23) without a win. Against the Seahawks, the Rams gambled away the chance of first place in the NFC West. Time for a change!
John Wolford will become the first quarterback since Kyle Orton (Dallas Cowboys) in 2013, who made his team debut in Week 17, playing for playoffs.
“He’s the man,” says Rams coach Sean McVay and expresses his confidence in Wolford: “With everything he has shown, be it in the preseason or in training, we had a good feeling about it. It’s just one It’s a matter of trust and we’re delighted that he has the opportunity this week to take our offensive onto the field. “
Cardinals quarterback also has injury problems
The Cardinals have been fighting for the fitness of Kyler Murray for several weeks, who had a very strong season over long periods and recently suffered minor injuries.
Murray injured his leg in the disappointing 12:20 loss to the San Francisco 49ers last week. During the week he said he felt “good” and could play.
Two weeks ago against the Philadelphia Eagles, the 23-year-old popped a whopping 406 yards out of his arm and threw for three touchdowns. Against the 49ers, not a single pass found its way into the end zone. It remains to be seen how “good” Murray really feels.
Rams put everything on super defense
In terms of approved yards per game, the Rams are the best team in the NFL with 286.5 and the second best in terms of approved points per game with 19.3. The best pass defense in the league, the third best defense against the run: these numbers speak volumes and could be decisive in the fight for the playoffs.
Also because of the failure of Goff, it is now even more important to create more possession. Led by defensive tackle Aaron Donald, who ranks second in the NFL with 13.5 sacks, the Rams stand out this season with their way of defending. Linebacker Leonard Floyd also has 9.5 sacks on his list.
With Safety John Johnson, the Rams also have a real tackle machine (101 tackles) in their own ranks. Also in the first meeting of the two teams, the defense was decisive for the victory of the Rams.
In the 38:28 success in week 13, Cardinals-QB Murray only brought 21 of 39 attempts to pass the man, could throw three touchdowns, but only create 173 yards. One of his weaker performances this season.
Cardinals have to get their dazzling offense on the court
Kyler Murray, DeAndre Hopkins, Larry Fitzgerald, Kenyan Drake and and and: The Cardinals lineup on offense reads really well. But in the last few weeks the rhythm has been lost a bit. Arizona made over 30 points in seven games this season, but only once in the last six games.
Superstar and wide receiver Hopkins wavered too much in his performances. One time 50 yards, the other time 160 – the latter performance would now be needed against a strong defense of the Rams.
Fantasy Tipp: Los Angeles’ Defense
Always a hot tip this season and even more so when the opposing quarterback, whose great strength is agility, struggles with a leg injury in the days leading up to the game. Murray will have a hard time staging his star-studded receivers without his nimble legs.
Los Angeles Rams at Arizona Cardinals: from 10:15 p.m. in the livestream on ran.de)
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