After a Week 2 victory against the Indianapolis Colts, the Rams return home with a 2-0 record. Striving to maintain the winning rhythm in Week 3 of the NFL season, their sights are now set on the reigning Super Bowl champions, Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The Buccaneers also have two wins under their belt headed into the third week of the season, having already defeated the Cowboys and the Falcons. But this Los Angeles-Tampa Bay matchup has been predicted to be one of the best early-season games of the year, and according to Tipico, the Rams are slightly favored to take the win, but only because the Rams will be the home team.
As always, health will be a key factor. Rams running back Darrell Henderson has a status of “questionable” for this Sunday. He left last week’s game with a rib injury, but according to Rams head coach Sean McVay, the team is hopeful that Henderson will be active in practice leading up to Sunday, and cleared to play.
Adding to the injury list, Rams linebacker Justin Lawler broke his hand last week against the Colts. The Rams were already lacking depth at the linebacker position, meaning Lawler’s potential absence could be noticeably detrimental. But as of Monday, his status is also listed as “questionable”.
It will also be a battle of two fiery quarterbacks. Tom Brady– simply because he’s Tom Brady. But also, Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford has been turning heads in the opening weeks of the season. After dominating the Bears in Week 1, he secured a tight win in Week 2 against the Colts. Stafford led the Rams on two late scoring drives and, after Matt Gay’s tiebreaking 38-yard field goal, pulled out a win. Stafford and wide receiver Cooper Kupp have been consistently in sync, which will hopefully continue against the Buccaneers. Against the Colts, Kupp caught nine passes for 163 yards and two touchdowns.
Many have predicted this Rams-Buccaneers showdown to be a “Super Bowl preview”. And ironically, the matchup will even take place at the same location as the upcoming 2022 Super Bowl, SoFi Stadium.