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Other Week 14 Game Recaps

Week 14 Game Recap: Los Angeles Rams 6, Chicago Bears 15

What you need to know

Los Angeles Rams

With Christian Kirk to injured reserve, Sherfield filled the void as the secondary receiver to Larry Fitzgerald against the Lions. Sherfield was the highlight player for Arizona in the loss with a collection of strong plays from a sliding reception to a highly-contested grab, and drawing a deep pass interference penalty. It was a career day for the undrafted receiver out of Vanderbilt, seeing more targets and receptions this week than the rest of the season combined.

Chicago Bears

The Bears passing offense struggled in what was a largely sloppy game between both teams in a cold environment that caused neither team to throw the ball effectively. Mitchell Trubisky threw three interceptions in this game and looked extremely out of sync in this speed-based offense. The good news for the Bears is that they got their running game going again as Jordan Howard had the best game of his season with the offensive line which was able to get to the second level against the Rams defense in this game. The defense played a big reason for this win as they were able to give the offense short fields and twice were able to immediately get an interception after Trubisky threw an interception.

Los Angeles Rams

QB Jared Goff, 63 offensive snaps, Pass: 20 - 44 - 180 - 0 TD / 4 INT, Rush: 1 - 5 - 0
Pressure and bad decision-making was the theme of Jared Goff’s dismal showing in Chicago. The Rams froze in the frigid conditions with Goff rarely looking comfortable in the pocket and the Rams struggling to get any easy yards through their scheme, concepts, or after the catch. Goff had more poor throws than quality ones, logging a should-have-been interception and a fumble (which the Rams recovered) beyond his four-turnover box score. Goff was generally late and indecisive on his drop backs and was rarely aided by his receivers (at least six drops). Goff added a safety and a critical fourth down sack to his list of demerits.

RB Todd Gurley, 62 offensive snaps, Rush: 11 - 28 - 0, Rec: 3 - 30 - 0 (7 targets)
Gurley struggled to his worst game of the season in Chicago, mirroring the Rams’ overall futility on offense. Gurley was largely ignored in the game plan in lieu of a pass-centric approach despite the close score for much of the game. Gurley had his best opportunities in the receiving game, but dropped a late target and Jared Goff overthrew Gurley on a screen with blockers in front, a staple play for the high-powered Rams this season. Gurley’s lone moment of success on the ground came on back-to-back carries in the fourth quarter, totaling 16 yards, before the offense shifted away from Gurley yet again. Gurley will have a good chance to get back on track against the Eagles back in Los Angeles next week.

WR Robert Woods, 63 offensive snaps, Rec: 7 - 61 - 0 (13 targets)
Woods’ 13 targets nearly doubled any other Rams player in the offensive dud performance against the Bears. Woods had two of the highlight passing games for the Rams in a game where few moments could be found. Woods ripped off a huge gain after-the-catch into scoring range after a crossing route and earlier in the game made a nice low grab on a deep comeback route. Woods was also stuffed on a screen pass and added a drop. Despite the season-high 13 targets, Woods’ 61 yards was his lowest total since Week 1. Woods surpassed 1,000 yards on the season, by far a career high, and faces an ideal bounce-back opponent in the Eagles next week.

WR Brandin Cooks, 62 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 22 - 0 (7 targets)
Cooks had seven targets but felt like than afterthought in the Rams’ offensive letdown in Chicago. Cooks had two short receptions in the first half, but was invisible over the final 30 frustrating minutes for the Rams offense outside of an ugly drop in the closing minutes. Cooks has gone four games without a touchdown and his 13 total targets over the past two games mark the second-fewest over a multiple game span of the season. The Eagles’ suspect secondary offers a bounce-back opportunity in Week 15.

WR Josh Reynolds, 63 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 36 - 0 (7 targets)
Reynolds saw a hearty seven targets, second-most for the Rams, in the loss against Chicago. Reynolds did not log a catch until nearly halftime and late in the game dropped a deep out target by bobbled the ball as he neared the sideline. Reynolds has struggled back-to-back weeks and gets a rebound opportunity against the struggling Eagles secondary next week.

TE Gerald Everett, 36 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 29 - 0 (7 targets)
Everett’s snaps surged to a season-high 57% against the Bears. However, Everett struggled along with the rest of the Rams’ usually hyper-productive offense. Everett was second on the team in targets, but added two drops to his box score. On the positive side, Everett converted a fake punt reception, diving for the sticks in the long-yardage situation. Everett also corralled a contested slant target on third down as a split-out receiver, a high-level play from the athletic move tight end. Everett also had a reception called back by penalty.

Chicago Bears

QB Mitchell Trubisky, 71 offensive snaps, Pass: 16 - 30 - 110 - 1 TD / 3 INT, Rush: 6 - 23 - 0
Mitchell struggled in this game as he never looked comfortable. Trubisky completed just 53% of his passes and threw three interceptions in which two of the passes sailed on him over his receivers hands and the other interception was a play in which he starred down Taylor Gabriel and Nickell Robey-Coleman jumped the route. The deep ball issues for Trubisky continued this week as he completed just one of ten passes this week longer than 10 yards and his two longest passes were intercepted. This is the second time that Trubisky has had more interceptions than completions longer than 10 yards on the season.

RB Jordan Howard, 39 offensive snaps, Rush: 19 - 101 - 0, Rec: 1 - 2 - 0 (1 targets)
Howard looked great this week and it was largely due to the Rams struggling linebackers which allowed Howard to get to the second level in this one. The biggest benefit for Howard is that the Bears have now committed to him for two consecutive weeks as Howard is a volume based runner and it has paid off significantly as he was able to wear down this Rams defense and break a 21-yard run in the fourth-quarter off-tackle.

RB Tarik Cohen, 30 offensive snaps, Rush: 9 - 69 - 0, Rec: 4 - 20 - 0 (4 targets)
The Bears plan was simple in this game after the early struggles of Trubisky and that was to win the game on the ground and Cohen played a big role in this. Cohen had the second most carries of his 2018 season and made the most of it as he was able to burst a 32 yard run off tackle on a read-option play that took the Bears into the red zone that ultimately led to a field goal. Cohen saw volume in the passing game but was not a primary target that he was with Chase Daniel at quarterback as Cohen saw just four targets that were largely check-down passes for Trubisky.

WR Allen Robinson, 61 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 42 - 0 (8 targets)
Robinson like most of the receivers in this game was primarily targeted on under routes as two of his five receptions were behind the line of scrimmage and all of his receptions were less than ten yards downfield. He was targeted three times on deep throws but was unable to connect with Trubisky in this game. This was a bit of a change in role for Robinson as he has not been a receiver in which they have previously used him primarily as a deep threat.

WR Taylor Gabriel, 57 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 22 - 0 (7 targets)
Gabriel was largely a non-factor in this game as while he saw seven targets in this game was largely unable to connect with Trubisky. The issue for Gabriel continues to be that he is not getting the deep targets that he was getting earlier this season now that Allen Robinson has returned from injury. He is primarily being used as a non-primary underneath receiver.

TE Trey Burton, 57 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 22 - 0 (5 targets)
Burton’s struggles continue as he just not found a consistent role in this offense. Trubisky did throw a deep pass to Burton but overthrew him in what would have been a deep gain of 20 yards or more. Burton was open but was overthrown by about 5 yards by Trubisky.