49ers fans at SoFi lost the Rams’ off guard

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THOUSAND EGE, California – A day after winning the NFC West but losing a regular season finale to divisional rival San Francisco 49ers, coach Sean McVay said the Los Angeles Rams were surprised by the amount of Niners fans at SoFi Stadium.

“It took us off guard,” McVay said Monday. “Just because of the way it’s been this year. It’s been great, great atmosphere, great environment. Yesterday was the same, but there was a lot of red there. It was definitely a surprise.”

The Rams announced a turnout of 74,447. It looked like most were 49ers fans cheering their team on for a win and place in the playoffs.

McVay’s concession reflected what quarterback Matthew Stafford said in the immediate aftermath of the 27-24 overtime loss, with the Rams blowing a 17-point lead in the first half and so on, while the Niners’ faithful held on well after the end to cheer their team on.

“It was a tough environment for us to communicate in really the whole second half,” said Stafford, who completed 15 of 16 passes on 153 yards and two touchdowns in the first half, but saw a drop in production in the second as he finished 21st. of 32 for 238 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions, equivalent to his third game in a row with multiple turns.

McVay said Monday that a toe injury Stafford sustained during the match dictated some of the late play.

“It was not like he wanted to get out of the game,” McVay said. “There are just certain things that you might potentially call on the scenarios that you are not as comfortable with the ability to perform at the level you want.”

McVay does not expect Stafford’s toe to be a problem in the future. “He was fine today,” McVay said. “He was just typically tender.”

Despite suffering a sixth straight loss to the 49ers (10-7), the Rams (12-5) still managed to win their third division title in five seasons by the Seattle Seahawks (7-10) defeating the Arizona Cardinals (11) -6).

McVay admitted on Monday that he felt “pissed” after the match, but said he had since moved on to appreciate their season with 12 wins and focus on an upcoming match against another division enemy.

“I was disappointed yesterday. That’s right,” McVay said. “But what I’m interested in is spending the energy on the things that are consistent with the next and what we can control.”

The Rams enter the playoffs as No. 4 seeded and will host the No. 5 seeded Arizona Cardinals, with whom they share the regular season, in a wild-card game at SoFi Stadium on Monday Night Football.

McVay said going into the off-season after a loss “does not mean s —,” and expressed confidence that the Rams, who returned from a three-game losing streak in November to win five in a row, have the necessary makeup to move on. .

“You can always draw on past experience of going into the playoffs,” said McVay, who has earned a spot in the playoffs in four of his five seasons as a coach. “Winning or losing has really not been much of a factor in how teams do depending on which lens you want to look at it through.”

The Rams will go into the playoffs with some uncertainty in their secondary after suffering a series of injuries.

Safety and defensive signalman Jordan Fuller suffered an ankle injury that will require a season-ending operation. McVay said Nick Scott or Terrell Burgess were among the candidates to fill in for safety and that cornerback Jalen Ramsey, who took over as signal caller after Fuller was put on the sidelines, was a candidate to continue the duty.

Safety Taylor Rapp, who took his fourth interception of the season against the 49ers, has entered the concussion protocol and his schedule for return is uncertain.

Cornerback Darious Williams also suffered a shoulder injury and McVay said he would undergo further evaluation.


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