Rams ride opportunistic defense in big win over Bears

L.A. sacks Bears QB Nick Foles four times and forces two interceptions
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INGLEWOOD, Calif. -- The Chicago Bears defense had been grabbing all the headlines entering Monday’s contest with the Los Angeles Rams.

That’s something that did not go unnoticed by Los Angeles edge rusher Leonard Floyd.

“We proved that we were the better defense today,” Floyd said. “We went out and kept them from scoring more points than we did.”

Like Floyd said, the proof is in the results. And there was no disputing who had the better defense after the Rams defeated the Bears 24-10 on Monday night at SoFi Stadium, the team’s first victory this season against a team with a winning record.

Outside linebacker Justin Hollins said the Rams are playing fast, physical and with good chemistry. The University of Oregon product notched his first sack since joining the Rams at the end of final roster cuts after being released by the Denver Broncos.

“Overall, I feel like as a defense were playing aggressive, we’re playing physical,” Hollins said. “We’re making all the right plays right now. We’re getting all the right calls in. Everybody’s on the same page and we’re just one, tight unit right now.”

The Rams held Chicago’s offense without a touchdown and the Bears to a season-low 10 points. The Rams gave up just 49 yards rushing. 

L.A. hauled in a pair of interceptions by safety Taylor Rapp and cornerback Jalen Ramsey, and three times forced the Bears to turn the ball over on downs with fourth-down stops.

The Rams’ pass rush consistently harassed quarterback Nick Foles most of the evening, sacking him four times. Playing against his former team, Floyd was the catalyst, finishing with five combined tackles – including a tackle for a loss – two sacks and two quarterback hits.

Foles finished 28 of 40 for 261 passing yards, with no touchdowns and two interceptions, posting a 66.8 passer rating.

The Rams are tied for third in the NFL with 24 sacks and have totaled eight interceptions on the year. It was a nice, bounce-back effort by the defense after an uneven performance in a loss to the San Francisco 49ers last week.

“I was pleased with everything that they did,” Rams head coach Sean McVay said about the defense. “I thought they flew around. I thought we were great, really in every area of the game. They held them to three points. That was all that they got. We had some huge stops when they were down in the tight red area, so they just did a great job.”

Floyd was given a game ball afterwards, along with defensive coordinator Brandon Staley, who used to coach outside linebackers for the Bears.

“It was kind of emotional, but I tried not to get to far into the emotional side of it,” Floyd said about his approach to the game. “I wanted to keep it like it was a normal week for me, just go out and practice hard throughout the week, come out on Monday and play at a high level. And we did that today, the whole defense.”

Now 5-2, the Rams will now turn their attention to preparation for the Miami Dolphins and rookie quarterback Tua Tagovailoa’s debut on a short week.

“When you go back and look at the tape, I think there’s going to be a lot of things reflected in a great performance,” McVay said. “Now let’s see if we can do it again next week against the Dolphins.”