The Los Angeles Rams have won a combined 24 games the last two years and have a chance to make three straight playoff appearances for the first time since 1999-2001. Coach Sean McVay held him out of offseason workouts and Gurley practiced every other day during training camp.
Gurley finished with 97 yards on 14 carries and put the game away in the 4th. The Los Angeles Rams finished previous year ranked second in offensive yards per game and points per game. The brightest of spots belonged to the linebackers in the season opener, with Clay Matthews getting a sack along with Dante Fowler Jr. accounting for two. However, a huge question on offense remains the health of running back Todd Gurley and how productive he can be. Brown had just one touchdown rushing in his previous four seasons combined with the Rams.
Corey Littleton also snagged an interception for the Rams, not to mention he also forced a fumble along with Samson Ebukam. Sunday's contest will mark a matchup between two elite quarterbacks in Jared Goff and Cam Newton.
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But the Rams answered with a 13-play, 75-yard drive that Brown capped with a one-yard touchdown run. Running back Christian McCaffrey took a direct snap from six yards out to score and cut the Rams' lead to 16-10 with 8:28 remaining in the third quarter.
Slye drilled a 52-yard field goal on the following Panthers possession, putting the Panthers behind 23-13 going into the final quarter.
Jermaine Carter blocked a punt deep in Rams territory and the ball was recovered by Reggie Bonnafon. The Panthers couldn't capitalize and had to punt after going three plays without a first down.
The Panthers defense came to play, opening Sunday's NFC tilt with enough aggression to keep L.A. bottled up and picking off Goff late in the game to give Newton and company opportunities. That's what it seems to be, even if no one wants to openly talk about it.