The Los Angeles Rams haven’t had many good Sundays lately, not with a five-game losing skid and just three victories this season.
But yet, the defending Super Bowl champs got a past Vince Lombardi Trophy winner to admit he didn’t have his best day facing this version of the Rams, with that admission coming on Sunday, November 27.
Super Bowl MVP Gives Harsh Criticism of Play Versus Rams
Patrick Mahomes, even after delivering more than 300 yards in the 26-10 Week 12 win over the now 3-8 Rams, admitted in his post game press conference he could’ve done more.
“The defense kept us in the game,” the Super Bowl 54 winner said during his postgame press conference. “Got some turnovers for us, got some big stops after some turnovers that we made, but especially in the red zone we gotta execute at a higher level — I gotta execute at a higher level.”
Mahomes dove further, saying “I gotta take out the one dumb play I make every game, it seems like. If I can take that out, I think we’ll be alright.”
The one “dumb” play he’s referencing is this red zone mistake Nick Scott capitalized on: Where Mahomes tried to his Travis Kelce in the back of the end zone, only to see the Rams safety step in front of the pass.
“I was gonna throw it to Trav [Kelce] and then at the last second, I didn’t think I could get the [ball] in so I tried to pull it down a little bit and I threw it directly into the dude’s stomach,” Mahomes detailed on the Scott pick. “I just gotta make sure that I don’t do that, especially in the red zone. Those are the ones that kill you in big games.”
Mahomes still finished with his sixth consecutive 300-yard outing by delivering 320 yards against the Rams. But he was still critical of himself after facing a struggling Rams team.
“I have to find ways to execute at a higher level,” Mahomes said. “Get it to these guys in space [and] when we do have chances, we gotta make sure that we get [the ball] into the end zone… I missed a lot of open guys.”
Rams ‘Ridiculously Good’ in This Area
While some fans will look at a 16-point loss and immediately say how one sided the game was, the Rams kept this game close by being “ridiculously good” in one area versus the Chiefs.
Noted by Cameron DaSilva of Rams Wire, the game “was actually much closer than it could’ve been” through the Rams’ red zone defense.
“It was an insanely good performance from the Rams’ defense against one of the best red zone offenses in the NFL,” DaSilva wrote. “Coming into Week 12, the Chiefs ranked third in the NFL in red zone touchdown percentage, finding the end zone on 72.1% of their trips inside the 20-yard line. They scored touchdowns on 31 of their 43 red zone trips, only failing 12 times all year.”
But against the Rams defense? Along with the Scott interception, the Chiefs failed to turn their red zone opportunities into touchdowns four other times — settling for four field goals. And while Jalen Ramsey once again faced online criticism for being the nearest coverage defender versus Kelce, he also wasn’t fooled on a trick play attempt toward Kelce by stepping in for the swatted pass in the end zone.
Bobby Wagner was among the defenders who became a highlight inside the 20 for the Rams and finished with six tackles and one pass deflection.
“They were in the red zone a couple of times, we were able to keep them out,” Wagner told reporters. “Just didn’t make enough plays.”
Fellow inside linebacker Ernest Jones also spoke about the red zone defensive play.
“I don’t take much out of a loss, other than we played pretty well down in the red zone,” Jones said after the game. “Didn’t do our job as far as keeping them from getting there (inside the 20-yard line). But overall, we just got to play better.”