Los Angeles Rams guilty of believing 'Hollywood' hype in San Francisco 49ers defeat, says Chris Simms
San Francisco 49ers (4-5) upset the Los Angeles Rams (7-3) on Monday Night Football with a 31-10 victory over their NFC West rivals; Chris Simms: "One team was desperate... one team was ready to go, ready to fight. The other one thought they could just show up"
Last Updated: 16/11/21 5:45pm
The Los Angeles Rams have firmly placed their football team in 'Super Bowl or Bust' mode in 2021, adding Odell Beckham Jr and Von Miller to an already star-studded roster in have made waves in the last fortnight. But the results, so far, haven't matched the ambition.
The Rams have lost their last two straight, the latest a 31-10 Monday night drubbing at the hands of their NFC West division rivals, the San Francisco 49ers.
The Rams raced out to an impressive 7-1 record through the first eight weeks of the season, with many hailing them as "the best team in football", but former NFL quarterback Chris Simms puts back to back losses since to the Tennessee Titans and 49ers down to the team believing their own hype.
"Out-coached, out-hit. and just too much 'Hollywood' c**p going on in L.A. right now," Simms said on Pro Football Talk (Sky Sports NFL, weekdays, 7pm)
"The [previously unbeaten] Cardinals lost on a Thursday night [in Week Eight], so everybody looks at the Rams and says 'they might be the best team in football' - then the Miller deal happens - and it has just been about everything other than football since.
"They didn't play well against the Titans, and now the same thing against the 49ers.
"It's more than just a Matthew Stafford problem. I know he didn't get them off to the best start in the world, but there's more to it than that; they've obviously been into their own headlines, on how great they were going to be and they got punched in the mouth last night."
Stafford, another blockbuster addition at quarterback in the offseason, has thrown four interceptions in the last two weeks, doubling his tally for the season. Against the Niners, he was picked off on the opening series of the game, while his second was returned by Jimmie Wards for a touchdown to see San Francisco swiftly into a 14-0 lead they would not relinquish.
The Rams gave up two future first-round draft picks to bring in Stafford, they did the same when trading for cornerback Jalen Ramsey in 2020. Fellow All-Pro linebacker Miller cost only 2022 second- and third-round picks, while Beckham was brought in as a free agent, but as both tasted defeat in their Rams debuts there are growing concerns at L.A's 'win now' mentality mortgaged against the team's long-term future.
Simms still believes they're a contender for Super Bowl LVI this season, however, adding: "I think the Rams are still going to be in the mix for this; they're not going to go away.
"They're in a bit of a funk right now but the body of work for the year still says that they're a good football team.
"I know the last two weeks have not been good, but it's a crazy year in the NFL - the craziest we can remember.
"The bye week is coming just at the right time for them, they're going to figure out what they want to do, what their approach is going forward. I would bet you there's a new attitude built over the next 12 days.
Niners team were 'desperate'
While the Rams are in the midst of a losing run, the 49ers broke out of their own with their stunning victory on Monday night - the Super Bowl finalists from two years ago had lost five of their last six coming into the contest.
"One team was desperate," Simms said. "They've had nothing but negative press coming in; 'Kyle Shanahan is the worst', 'Jimmy Garoppolo is the worst'. They hear that and understand what is being said about them.
"And on the other side of the spectrum, everybody was telling the Rams how amazing they were, with all of these stars.
"Just the psychological analysis of that tells you that one team was ready to go, ready to fight. The other one thought they could just show up, 'we're better than you'.
"The 49ers are out of the playoff picture right now, but one I'd watch out for down the stretch."
San Francisco currently have a 4-5 record on the season but are certainly in the mix for a Wild Card spot in the NFC, with the Carolina Panthers at just 5-5 currently occupying the 7th and final seed.
"I think it was a bit of a wake-up call to all of us," Simms added on the 49ers win. "I know it hasn't always been pretty, but let's not sleep on this team.
"They have some talent and they're getting healthy, especially on the offensive side of the ball - George Kittle is back, Trent Williams back, the running back group is a little healthier.
"The defense is good, not great; it's not the 2019 Super Bowl defense they had, for sure, but they've still got some studs up front and, in my opinion, the best middle linebacker in football [Fred Warner].
"There's a physicality to them. They're never going to step onto a field and be bullied, the 49ers. They're not going to be scared of the fight."
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