THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – Terrell Lewis' mindset is as relentless as the way he pursues opposing quarterbacks.
Yes, the Rams outside linebacker has recorded a sack in each of the Rams' last three games. But when asked about his performance over that span, he was more focused on the plays he should've made instead of the ones he actually did.
"It's been good obviously," Lewis said Monday. "Did well I guess. I'm always more critical of myself. I notice other stuff I could've done too."
By that, Lewis means plays he left on the field.
Even though he had two total tackles (one for loss), one sack and one QB hit, he said he felt like he was supposed to have an interception too in the Rams' 38-11 win over the Giants last week.
Overall, he's recorded nine total tackles (three for loss), two QB hits and one forced fumble in addition to those three sacks over the last three weeks.
"He's been great. It's been a real positive," Rams head coach Sean McVay said Wednesday. "If you look at all the things that he's overcome, to see the significant amount of snaps that he's really played over the last three weeks, more than he's ever played by far, seeing how he's coming out of these games, that's been a real positive. You talk about a guy that's overcome a lot of adversity and a lot of setbacks from a health standpoint, to be where he's at, it's a great feel-good story. (We) want to continue to keep him healthy, which is why you see us be smart with him throughout the course of the weeks, giving him a rest day like today, but he's only getting better. And if he wasn't so long, maybe we wouldn't have that offsides last week (laughs), but he's doing a good job."
That adversity McVay is referring to is when Lewis was placed on the Reserve/Non-Football Injury list prior to the start of it as he dealt with atrophy from a knee procedure he underwent. That procedure was done because of infection concerns from a previous procedure, and while no infection was discovered, the atrophy led to Los Angeles placing him on that list, subsequently delaying Lewis' Rams and NFL debut until Week 5.
This year, the Rams are managing Lewis' health by giving him a rest day during practice each week. In turn, Lewis has been able to have many more opportunities to self-critique his performance.
Lewis has also picked up things like time in the sauna from Rams' veterans to help optimize his recovery and performance.
To be in the position to make the impact he has, Lewis said it's "a blessing," but unsurprisingly indicated there's more work to be done.
"It's a start, definitely," Lewis said. "I'm just happy to be able to get be able to be on the field consistently and be able to contribute and help this team to reach our ultimate goal."
In that regard, Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris has been pleased with what he's seen.
Morris joked that he was still looking for the third sack Lewis got – perhaps one more thing for Lewis to examine – but it counts nonetheless, and Lewis has continued to capitalize on his increased playing time in Morris' eyes.
"He went out man and he's absolutely been phenomenal," Morris said. "He's another guy that kind of taken advantage of the snap count. We've seen it go up increasingly more and more every single week. It's a credit to him for (his) health, it's a credit for him to taking care of himself, it's a credit to him put in this position to take advantage of the moment, and he's certainly done that."