The Rams lost for the first time in three weeks on Sunday, falling to the Eagles 43-35. With the loss, Los Angeles is 9-4 on the season, but still maintains its one-game lead over the Seahawks in the NFC West. Below is some analysis of the Rams’ snap counts from Sunday.
OFFENSIVE SNAP COUNTS
— Although the contest was close through both halves, L.A. only took 48 snaps on offense to Philadelphia’s 91. Over the last three games, the Rams have continued to see their snap count totals decrease on offense from 77 in Week 12, to 58 in Week 13. But over the last two games, the club did receive help from a pick-six and a blocked punt returned for a touchdown.
— Injuries played a key role in the snap count totals for Week 14, especially on the offensive line. Right guard Jamon Brown, left guard Rodger Saffold and center John Sullivan were the only three linemen to play all 48 snaps.
— Left tackle Andrew Whitworth headed into the locker room to be evaluated for an ankle injury in the second quarter, but returned for the start of the second half. Right tackle Rob Havenstein also exited the game briefly in the fourth quarter with an ankle injury. In both cases, Darrell Williams filled in on the line, playing 21 percent of the snaps.
— Running back Todd Gurley took the most snaps of any skill player (45) for the second time in the past three games. The Georgia product was very effective on the ground this week, recording 96 yards in 13 carries. He also continued his dominance in the screen game, catching three passes for 39 yards.
— Running back Malcolm Brown took his first snaps since Week 9, playing in six percent of the Rams time on offense. He was most likely used sparingly on Sunday due to the close nature of the game, prompting head coach Sean McVay to leave Gurley in on the majority of the snaps.
— As L.A. continues to be without its most productive wide receiver Robert Woods, McVay elected to rotate in several wideouts throughout the contest. These included Tavon Austin, Pharoh Cooper and Mike Thomas who all took at least five snaps on Sunday.
DEFENSIVE SNAP COUNTS**
— The Rams played a large number of defensive players on Sunday, rotating in 22 different players throughout the contest. This was in large part due to the Eagles’ time of possession, as they controlled the football for over 39 minutes. And while no Rams played in 100 percent of the snaps, safety Lamarcus Joyner led Los Angeles with 90 overall.
— Week 14 marked an unusually high snap count total for the Rams defense. To put the large number into perspective, if you combined the defense’s snap totals from Week 1 and Week 7, it would only be nine more snaps than the unit saw on Sunday.
— Although middle linebacker Alec Ogletree hyperextended his elbow in Week 13, he was still one of the most prominent defensive contributors — playing 86 snaps against the Eagles. In all, he recorded nine tackles and one pass defense. This was second only to safety John Johnson III who had 11 tackles and two passes defensed in 65 snaps. Linebacker Bryce Hager filled in for Ogletree through five snaps when the Georgia product experienced some cramping in the second half.
— As they did on offense, injuries took a toll on the Rams defensive unit as well. L.A. lost its starting cornerback Kayvon Webster late in the first quarter to a ruptured achilles. Then in the fourth quarter, cornerback Trumaine Johnson exited the game with a concussion. With both corners out, Kevin Peterson (21 snaps), Troy Hill (64) and Nickell Robey-Coleman (84) saw their highest snap count totals of the season.
*SPECIAL TEAMS SNAP COUNTS *
— The Rams special teams unit continued its trend of creating big plays against the Eagles. After blocking a field goal and extra point attempt in Week 13, the unit notched its third blocked punt of the season in Week 14. Although Thomas (five snaps) and safety Blake Countess (one snap) did not see much time on offense or defense, respectively, they made of the most of their time on special teams. With 22 and 28 snaps respectively, the duo accounted for the blocked punt returned for a touchdown that put the Rams ahead 28-24.