INGLEWOOD, Calif. – A strong second half, particularly from their run game, helped the Rams (3-3, 2-1 NFC West) defeat the Cardinals 26-9 on Sunday at SoFi Stadium.
Arizona (1-5, 0-2) had no answer for a Los Angeles run game that ripped off 107 rushing yards in the third quarter alone en route to adding 10 points and gaining their first lead of the contest. Running back Kyren Williams was a big piece to that, rushing for 154 of his career-high 158 yards in the second half alone as the Rams outscored the Cardinals 20-0 in the second half.
Williams left the game late in the fourth quarter with an ankle injury and was questionable to return.
Meanwhile, wide receiver Cooper Kupp finished with seven catches for 148 yards and his first touchdown on the season.
Here is the complete game recap, presented by American Airlines:
The Cardinals struck first with a 55-yard field goal by kicker Matt Prater on the opening drive for an early 3-0 lead.
After a third-down stop near midfield, a 29-yard return by Rams wide receiver Austin Trammell set the Rams up at their own 41. Aided by a 37-yard completion from Matthew Stafford to Kupp shortly thereafter, Los Angeles got its first points via a 29-yard field goal by Maher to tie the game 3-3 toward the end of the first quarter.
An early second-quarter fumble on a return by Trammell was recovered by Arizona at the L.A. 17. However, the Cardinals could only manage a short Prater field goal on the following drive to regain the lead 6-3.
The Cardinals on ensuing possession were left to go for it on 4th and 5 from the Rams' 40, but Cardinals quarterback Josh Dobbs' deep pass intended for wide receiver Marquise Brown down the right sideline was incomplete.
After a 3-and-out by the Rams, the Cardinals were again held to a short field goal, as Prater's 27-yarder gave them a 9-3 lead with 43 seconds left in the first half. Thanks to a 49-yard completion from Stafford to Kupp, the Rams were able to add a 35-yard field goal by Maher just before halftime to cut their deficit to three.
The Rams' second half-opening drive began with nine consecutive run plays for 62 rushing yards and ended with a 13-yard touchdown pass from Stafford to Kupp for their first lead of the game, 13-9, with 8:57 left in the third quarter.
More explosive plays in the run game on the Rams' second offensive series of the second half helped expand that lead further, as a 31-yard run by Williams helped set up a 24-yard field goal by Maher to make it 16-9 Rams with 2:44 left in the third quarter.
An early fourth-quarter interception by linebacker Christian Rozeboom in the redzone on a Dobbs pass behind tight end Zach Ertz that deflect off Ertz's hand gave Los Angeles' defense an important takeaway in the redzone. The Rams' offense used that turnover to extend their lead to 23-9 midway through the fourth quarter via a 5-yard touchdown run by Williams.
A 43-yard field goal made it 23 unanswered points, counting Maher's field goal in the final seconds of the first half, for the Rams en route to the victory.
The Los Angeles Rams take on the Arizona Cardinals at SoFi Stadium in Week 6 of the 2023 season. Take a look at photos from the matchup!