Week 5 NFL Quarterback Power Rankings

Week 5 NFL Quarterback Power Rankings
The 33rd Team’s weekly QB rankings are a snapshot of where the league’s 32 current starters are right now, taking into account the player’s recent production, his supporting cast, his health, and an evaluation by our scouting department, led by former NFL team executive T.J. McCreight and assisted by scouts Justin Casey, Kevin Cohn and […]

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Rams-49ers Week 4 Scouting Report: Grades and Key Matchups

Rams-49ers Week 4 Scouting Report: Grades and Key Matchups
The Scouting Report for Monday’s Rams-49ers game is produced by The 33rd Team’s Scouting Department, which is led by former Eagles, Cardinals and Ravens personnel executive T.J. McCreight and assisted by scouts Justin Casey, Kevin Cohn and Evan Pritt. Key Matchups 49ers’ Defensive Front vs. Rams’ OL The 49ers are a four-man rush team about […]

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Week 4 NFL Quarterback Power Rankings

Week 4 NFL Quarterback Power Rankings
The 33rd Team’s weekly NFL quarterback rankings are a snapshot of where the league’s 32 current starters are right now, taking into account the QB’s recent production, his supporting cast, his health, and an evaluation by our scouting department, led by former NFL team executive T.J. McCreight and assisted by scouts Justin Casey, Kevin Cohn […]

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Rams Need to Protect Stafford Better This Week Against Falcons

In this video, Rich Gannon and Matt Cassel discuss the importance of protecting Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford this week against Atlanta. In the opener, Stafford took a beating from the Bills.

“If you’ve got a great quarterback and you knock him around he becomes a good quarterback,” Gannon said.


Super Bowl Hangover: Pressure on Rams, Bengals

The Los Angeles Rams and Cincinnati Bengals — Super Bowl combatants just seven months ago — both got off to rough starts to the season. Charles Davis recognizes that a Super Bowl hangover can be real but also acknowledges it might be the wake-up call both teams needed.


Bills Game a ‘Rude Awakening’ for Rams

Last night’s game was a real indication of where these two teams are.

It is shocking to me that the Buffalo Bills can go on the road and turn the ball over four times to the defending champions and still roll out of Los Angeles with a 31-10 win. I think it tells you a lot about where the Bills are and it also says a lot about where the Rams are.

Let’s start with the Bills. I thought they did a great job. They have a new offensive coordinator in Ken Dorsey. Brian Daboll left to take the New York Giants’ job, and I thought Dorsey did a great job trying to neutralize what the Rams do so well, and that’s turning Aaron Donald loose in the middle of the pocket.

They did a great job with their protection schemes. They got a lot double teams on him. They released the backs inside to help chip Donald. They did a great job sliding their protections. Most importantly, they did a wonderful job at getting the ball out quick. There were a lot of designed throws, quick throws, bubble screens, and quick screens to the backs. I think Josh Allen’s get-off time through the first three quarters was like 2.2 seconds.

The other thing that they did was they changed the launch point with quarterback Josh Allen frequently. They moved him around a little bit, so they made it more difficult to really zero in on where he was. Of course, like we saw him do last year, he was able to pull the ball down and run and make some big plays. That’s very frustrating for a defensive coordinator like Raheem Morris.

Allen ran for 750 yards last season. That’s very tough on a defense and he’s such a unique player for a guy who is 6-foot-5 and 237 pounds. He doesn’t act or look like a quarterback in the National Football League. When he pulls it down, he’s not looking to get out of bounds. He’s not looking to slide. He is looking for a small player to knock backwards. We saw the stiff arm that he gave on the boundary. He’s just a special player.

What was even more impressive to me was watching that Buffalo defense. It really ran out of steam last year in the loss to the Chiefs in the divisional round. Look at what they did last night. That to me was really impressive. Seven sacks and three interceptions of Matthew Stafford. We’ll get to Stafford in a minute, but I think the Bills defense with the addition of Von Miller — Von Miller is a closer! You bring him in late with some fresh legs and he can get to the quarterback. That was really the difference last night.

On the other side of it, you look at the Rams. The Rams came into that game with high expectations, obviously, as the defending Super Bowl Champions, and they just got off to a really rough start offensively. They looked lethargic. For a while there, they couldn’t score a point. The timing and the rhythm was off in the passing game. I think a lot of that can be attributed to the issues they had up front last night. They’ve got a new left tackle. Andrew Whitworth is no longer in the building. Joe Noteboom gave up a sack early. I think he’s going to be ok, but he’s not Whitworth and is still a work in progress.

You look at the rest of the group, and penetration inside really affects Stafford. You look at Stafford last year. As well as he played in the postseason and late in games, he completed 70 percent of his passes and threw 12 touchdowns and just one interception in fourth quarters last season. It’s what he did in those other quarters that concerns me. He had a league-high 17 interceptions. We saw three from him last night.

Where do they show up? When you get push inside. He doesn’t handle the push so well up in his face. He doesn’t have that great change-of-direction ability to get out on the edge of a defense. He’s not a guy that’s going to manufacture a lot of offense. If you can’t solidify those A and B gaps for Stafford, he’s going to struggle, and we saw that last night.

Don’t count out the Rams. They’ve got one of the best head coaches and play-callers in Sean McVay, and they’ll be back. That was a rude awakening in Week 1 for the defending-champion Los Angeles Rams.

NFL Analysis

Four Takeaways From Bills’ Dominant Victory Over Rams

Editor’s note: After the Buffalo Bills’ dominant victory over the Los Angeles Rams Thursday night, in the NFL’s annual kickoff game, Mike Martz provided four takeaways from the game:

Bills’ Offense Outplayed Rams

Offensively, the Bills clocked them. They rushed the football a lot on first down, let that clock go, short passes, little option routes. They really didn’t take the ball over the top until the fourth quarter. They were very, very patient.

This is San Francisco’s playbook. The 49ers come in and beat the Rams time and time again doing this: dominate the clock, get first downs, get them inpatient.

Really, though, the Rams couldn’t get anything going offensively because of the edge stuff. The Rams are a big fly-sweep, bootleg, rollout team, and those edge rushers they just took all of that stuff away from them. They were able to run the ball a little bit. I thought the Bills had a great plan, but more importantly, they just outplayed them. They were more physical in this game.

Bills’ Defense Set the Tone, Too

Buffalo’s defensive front, particularly on the edge, took away the hard play-action the Rams like to do. They put enough pressure on them they couldn’t hold the ball and get out on the perimeter and get those deep crossing routes.

They really forced the Rams to get more of an up-tempo passing game, get the ball out faster. It’s something they don’t necessarily want to do. They’re not real comfortable being in a shotgun in the pocket. When they were, they had a little bit of success, but that’s just not what they do.

The other thing with that, when you can put the pressure on and stymie the running game with your front four like they’ve been able to do, then you don’t need to blitz, you don’t need to pressure. They are very simple on defense and they had a great game plan for them.

Tale of Two Quarterbacks

Matthew Stafford missed two balls where he just flat missed the receivers. He just didn’t look very sharp to me. They got him out of his plan, what they wanted to do, and the Rams just couldn’t adjust to it.

That’s not to say the Rams aren’t a good team and won’t come back, because I think they will. But I didn’t think Stafford looked very sharp in the game.

On the other side, it’s hard to play better than Josh Allen played in this game. They’re the No. 1-ranked team in the NFL for a reason. I picked them to win the Super Bowl this year, and I think Josh Allen will be the MVP of the league.

Even his [two] picks were perfect throws, his receivers just gave it up.

High Praise for New Bills OC Ken Dorsey

I really, really like this new offensive coordinator. I like his rhythm, his patience. Their adjustment to shutting down the clock for the Rams. They dominated the clock the entire game. That’s something they had to do to win the game. I really liked his approach to this game. They’re a really good team right now and the offensive coordinator is really helping them.










Sky Is the Limit for Matthew Stafford, Josh Allen in 2022

What should fans of the Buffalo Bills and the Los Angeles Rams expect out of their star quarterbacks this season? The Bills are Super Bowl favorites, while the Rams are looking to repeat as Super Bowl champions. Former NFL quarterback Matt Cassel outlines why the expectations for Josh Allen and Matthew Stafford should be very high and why fans of these teams should be excited to see them play this season.

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