The Rams schedule is a tough one next season and they boast the toughest strength of schedule in the league. Of their opponents next season, nearly half made the playoffs last year. Sean McVay is no stranger to a tough schedule however, since 2018 the Rams have ranked top 5 in strength of schedule and they’ve exceeded expectations. That being said, let’s break down each of their matchups next season as well as providing my prediction for the team.
Week 1- vs Bills (TNF) (1-0)
The Rams open the season to arguably their toughest opponent. The Bills are coming off a tough AFC Championship loss which likely lit a fire within Josh Allen. However, it is their home opener and ring ceremony so they’ll have some extra motivation. This game is ultimately going to come down to who plays the better defense. In an offensive shootout I think that it’ll ultimately be the Rams that come out on top in a close game.
Week 2 vs Falcons (2-0)
This game is one of the less threatening on the schedule, as the Falcons are currently rebuilding their roster. Their offense should be pretty easy to contain and this should be more of a momentum game to continue their good play after winning against the Bills. Think of it as the Giants game last year, as the Rams cruise to a 2-0 start.
Week 3 at Cardinals (3-0)
The Rams have had the Cardinals number in recent years and I don’t think this year is any different. They’ll be without Deandre Hopkins in their first meeting with the Rams, and Kyler and Hollywood Brown might still be figuring things out chemistry wise. I’d expect a similar score to their wild card game last year as the Rams move to 3-0.
Week 4 at 49ers (MNF) (3-1)
There’s nobody in the division like the 49ers. With or without Deebo, I think that they’ll take at least one game from the Rams. Throughout the first 4 games of the season the Rams are going to come out 3-1 no matter who you predict to beat them, and I think their first loss comes at the 49ers in prime time.
Week 5- vs Cowboys (4-1)
The Cowboys are a much worse team than when the Rams played them in 2020, and they won with Goff at QB. They’ve got the easiest strength of schedule next year, and aren’t as tough as they seem to be. They lost Amari Cooper and Zeke isn’t the running back he used to be. I think even if Jared Goff was the Rams quarterback they’d still win this game. The Rams should win by two scores as they advance to 4-1.
Week 6- vs Panthers (5-1)
Heading into the bye week should be another easy game for the team. The Panthers themselves aren’t sure who’s going to be starting at QB for them, but whoever it is won’t be great. I’d expect a good amount of turnovers from this game from the Panthers QB, and this might be the game we see a good amount of rookie action. They should easily come out with a win before the bye to put them at 5-1.
Week 8- vs 49ers (6-1)
Coming out of the bye will be the second time the Rams face their division rivals. Even though they lost the first time, I don’t think they’ll make that same mistake again. They’re coming off a bye and get the 9ers at home so I think they end up splitting with them.
Week 9- at Buccaneers (6-2)
The Rams have surprisingly had Tom Brady’s number as a Buccaneer, but I think this is the game he gets his revenge. Brady still has some gas left in the tank and the Bucs are going to be one of the top teams in the NFC. It’ll be a close game and I think this is the one that Brady finally comes out on top.
Week 10- vs Cardinals (7-2)
In the final meeting between these two teams, I think the Rams will win yet again. This is the part of the season where the Cardinals usually start to decline, but either way they should have no problem winning this game at home.
Week 11- at Saints (8-2)
The Saints might have made a plethora of free agent signings, but I don’t think they’ll be enough to stop the Rams. This will be a tougher game than the Panthers or Falcons, but I think they’ll have a close game similar to the Colts last year.
Week 12- at Chiefs (9-2)
This is what everyone has been waiting for, a rematch of the legendary MNF game from years ago. However, both teams are very different with the Chiefs losing their biggest wide receiver threat. I think it’ll be pretty high scoring, but I think the Chiefs Defense will be the weakness here.
Week 13- vs Seahawks (10-2)
This is the first time the Rams will face the post-Wilson Seahawks. They weren’t the best team last year with him and I don’t think they’ll be better off without him. Rams should win pretty easily in both games.
Week 14- vs Raiders (TNF) (10-3)
Here’s a surprise game that I think the Rams will end up losing. There’s always going to be a game you don’t expect a team to lose on the schedule and I think this is that one for the Rams. The Raiders had a good offseason with some solid additions on both sides of the ball. They get Darren Waller back and I think the secondary will struggle a bit.
Week 15- at Packers (MNF) (11-3)
The Rams will travel to Lambeau in the cold yet again to face a pretty different Packers team. Rodgers has gotten the best of this team recently, but without a true number 1 receiver I think they’ll struggle to move the ball down the field. If the Rams can stop the run game and Bobby Wagner plays well I think this should be a easy win.
Week 16- vs Broncos (Christmas) (11-4)
Even though Russell Wilson is on a new team, that won’t stop Aaron Donald from giving him some attention in the pocket for Christmas. However, Donald’s effort won’t be enough to stop the new mile high passing attack. Unless the D-Line is at 120% on Christmas, I see an upset win by the Broncos.
Week 17- at Chargers (12-4)
Technically this is an away game for the Rams, but they got lucky and get to face their neighbors at home. The Chargers are going to be good next year, but not good enough for the Rams. McVay knows how Staley operates and I think the master wins against his former apprentice.
Week 18- at Seahawks (13-4)
Rounding our the schedule is what should be another easy game for the Rams. Depending on their division status I could see them resting their starters, but I gave them the win regardless.
Final Prediction (13-4)
My final prediction for next season is 13-4, it’s a tough schedule and I could see as low as 11-6 depending on their play, but I think they improve by one on their win total.