The NFC West has a major battle looming this coming Week 4. The Los Angeles Rams and Arizona Cardinals have a date Sunday with first place at stake. Meanwhile, the San Francisco 49ers and Seattle Seahawks are reeling from losses as they try to recuperate before their clash. Here is the latest in this edition of the NFC West Roundup.
Los Angeles Rams
Before the start of the 2021 season, it was clear to some that the competition between teams in the NFC West was going to be quality football. Tipico Sportsbook’s newest MVP odds are an indication that has been the case. The sports betting site now has Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford tied with his Arizona’s Kyler Murray for best odds to win the NFL MVP.
The +600 odds justify Stafford’s success through three weeks. It is clear he is a changed man after such a stellar game against the Buccaneers. As Tom Brady airdropped 432 passing yards on Los Angeles, Stafford clapped back with 343 yards and four touchdowns. For transparency’s sake, the former only had one pass go into the endzone for six.
— Los Angeles Rams (@RamsNFL) September 26, 2021
The Cardinals are 3-0, but it sure feels like there are still some kinks to iron out. It took the better part of the first three quarters of Sunday’s game at Jacksonville to finally pulling out with a win. But now, Arizona is going into their biggest game of the season yet, where mistakes must be minimal and the roster must be healthy.
The offensive line lost a few members in the Jacksonville victory, linemen Justin Pugh and Justin Murray would exit the game in the third quarter. Head coach Kliff Kingsbury alluded to back injuries in the postgame press conference. Right tackle Kelvin Beachum was already out prior with a rib injury. On a side note, it still appears wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins‘ rib injury may be affecting him as well.
San Francisco 49ers
Leaving Aaron Rodgers with less than a minute in regulation is always a lesson in foreshadowing. The San Francisco 49ers learned that the hard way Sunday night as Rodgers put kicker Mason Crosby in position to dash the hopes of a rowdy San Francisco crowd. The painful last-second loss was not without some other wounds, namely on the roster.
Cornerback Josh Norman had a rather concerning injury, leaving the game due to bruised lungs that caused him to cough up blood. He stayed overnight at a hospital, later being released on Monday. The 49ers’ secondary also suffered a bump with fellow corner K’Waun Williams who will miss time with a calf injury.
The Seahawks are not in a great position at the moment, losing back-to-back games after Sunday’s defeat at Minnesota. While it still is early, Seattle is sitting unenviably in the NFC West’s last spot. Giving up 453 yards of total offense to a Dalvin Cook-less squad has many a 12th Man understandably irate.
While the Seahawks lament their issues ahead of Week 4’s meeting with the 49ers, one athlete turned heads for what he said about potentially joining Seattle. Basketball icon LeBron James was on ESPN’s Manningcast for Monday Night Football, revealing both the Seahawks and Dallas offered him a contract during the 2011 NBA lockout. Even so, not even a King might be enough to fix what is an extensive dilemma in Seattle.
"I still got the jersey too, that Jerry [Jones] and Pete Carroll sent me from 2011."
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) September 28, 2021
Featured Image courtesy of Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports
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