The Los Angeles Rams scored 14 unanswered points in the fourth quarter to pull off a huge upset victory over the Las Vegas Raiders, 17-16. New Rams quarterback Baker Mayfield drove an eight-play, 98-yard drive with 1:45 remaining in the fourth quarter for a six-point low, and Van Jefferson hit a 23-yard touchdown run with only 10 seconds remaining.
According to the Elias Athletic Office, the Rams’ 98-yard drive was the longest TD drive that started in the last two minutes over the last 45 seasons.
The Raiders controlled the tempo all evening, but Josh McDaniels’ team clearly took its foot off the gas pedal in the second half. Derek Carr finished with 137 yards and two interceptions, while Josh Jacobs rushed for 99 yards and a touchdown. Davante Adams made some plays as well, catching three passes for 71 yards.
John Walford was given the Rams’ starting quarterback, but Mayfield replaced him after only one drive. The former No. 1 overall selection completed 22 of 35 passes for 230 yards and one touchdown, while Ben Skoronec caught seven passes for 89 yards.
Here’s a breakdown of how this amazing comeback happened on Thursday night.
Why did the Rams win?
Baker. Mayfield. show up. higher.
Mayfield was waived by the Carolina Panthers this week and not only has he had to adjust to a new offense, but he’s also been dealing with a short week. Mayfield received the playbook on Tuesday night, studied it on the plane ride to LA, and even though it was only Wednesday with the team, he somehow had the necessary chemistry with his receivers to lead a 13-point comeback. Mayfield had barely adjusted to the time change, but he seemed to have adapted to his new offense. The defense helped the offense by not allowing the Raiders to get too many bullets. The Rams had more passing yards, fewer turnovers, and fewer punts, which always helps lead to the win.
It wasn’t just Mayfield, he had an assist from Skowronek who led the team in receiving with 89 yards and although the running game wasn’t as effective as the passing game, Cam Akers finished with 42 yards on the ground.
Why did the raiders lose
Las Vegas started the game strong, but struggled to a first down and was unable to gain a comfortable enough lead to escape from. Derek Carr finished with a rating of 36.9 compared to Mayfield’s 91.4.
The Raiders took a 13-point lead with just over four minutes left in the game and the Rams led. The Rams offense has yet to score a touchdown in the game, but the Raiders stalled and as soon as they did, they opened up the opportunity for a comeback. Mayfield saw his opportunity and made the most of it, returning with quick play, accurate passing and confidence. The Raiders defense lost steam and thus lost the game.
Raiders seem to be getting better, but they keep blowing leads and their inability to close games is now a pattern.
The Rams finally got into the end zone and did so in the nick of time. Cam Akers’ one-yard score capped a 17-play, 75-yard drive that gave Los Angeles hope.
Play the game
The Game section of Fast Food is now being upgraded to: Drive of the Game. Mayfield and the offense he just joined this week had 98 yards with 1:45 left in the game and needed a touchdown. With at least 10 seconds remaining, Mayfield completed the unlikely game-winning pass, a play he calls one of the most memorable of his career.
Take a look at Strike to Van Jefferson:
The Rams were facing elimination tonight, with a loss that knocked them out of the playoffs, but after a wild comeback, they lived to see another chance to qualify (although the chances are still slim). The Rams will face the Packers, another struggling team, next week in Green Bay. Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels will take on his former boss next week when the Raiders take on Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots.