What are the Los Angeles Rams are talking about ahead of this week's Wild Card playoff matchup against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field? Let's find out:
1. Asked about the play of Lions quarterback Jared Goff, who spent four years as the quarterback of the Rams, Los Angeles head coach Sean McVay said he's really seen Goff mature and take great ownership of the offense in Detroit.
"Just a quarterback playing with a lot of confidence," McVay said. "Has a great rapport with his skill players. Even when you're watching that Chargers game, and you could see his ownership to be able to check into a run when they had a personnel grouping they didn't have and then it goes for a 75-yard touchdown.
"Just good ownership. All the things you want to see from your quarterback and been really impressed."
McVay said Goff's rapport and collaboration with offensive coordinator Ben Johnson has been fun to watch from afar.
2. The Rams' offensive line was a much more consistent group in 2023 and their ability to stay healthy was a big part of that. In total, only six Rams have made starts along the offensive line in 2023. They had 14 players make a start upfront in 2022, per therams.com
Right tackle Rob Havenstein is the veteran among the group. He knows the challenge his unit faces Sunday in Detroit.
"The one thing I do know is Detroit has one heck of a defense," he said. "They play well together. They've got superstars and they've got role players who play their role very well and they all work extremely well together. It's a tough defense. And it's going to be a tough place to play. They haven't had a home playoff game in 30 years. Place is going to be rocking. It's going to be electric. We're going to be on silent count. I'm excited for the opportunity to go play."
3. McVay said the NFC Championship Game in New Orleans in 2018 was a wild and loud environment, and he expects Sunday night's atmosphere in Detroit to rival that.
"You've watched Detroit all year they've had great home atmospheres and environments," he said. "Everybody is pumped up. Big time Sunday night game. We anticipate them to have a great crowd, great support and sometimes going into those atmospheres can be a great opportunity for us to come together and be tighter than we've ever been.
"We know this is going to be especially special for that city and pretty cool the loyalty they have and the love for football and we're going to try and go in there and give them a great show and compete to the best of our ability."
McVay said visual communication will be key for his offense.
4. Matthew Stafford didn't play in the Rams' win over San Francisco Sunday that clinched the No. 6 seed and a date with Detroit because the Rams had already clinched a playoff spot win or lose. He was asked about the matchup in Detroit after the game.
"The opportunity happens to be in Detroit, which is fun for me on a personal level," he told espn.com. "I know it's going to be rocking there. Haven't had a playoff game there about 30 years or whatever it is. So it'll be a great atmosphere. It'll be a tough task for us, but definitely excited.
"It will be fun to see some of the people that I haven't seen in a while, that I know are still around the building. And obviously it'll be a different scenario and won't be wearing their colors. But still, appreciate so many of the people there that gave me my start in this league and took care of me for 12 years, too."
View photos of the starters for the Los Angeles Rams.
5. What changed for the Rams the second half of the season?
The Rams started 3-6 and finished 7-1 over the last two months of the season. McVay said simply getting healthy was a big part of it. They got a lot of key players back, and their Week 10 bye came at a perfect time.
He also said there was a commitment to establishing some identities on both sides of the ball, which he described as mental and physical toughness. They took better care of the football and were able to get timely takeaways and establish leads early in games. The only loss the Rams suffered over the last two months was an overtime loss in Baltimore.
6. The Rams are still hopeful safety Jordan Fuller (ankle) will be able to play Sunday. He was injured in the first quarter Sunday. McVay said Fuller won't practice Wednesday but they are still hopeful. Fuller started all 17 games at safety in the regular season and played 93 percent of the team's defensive snaps. His six turnovers forced lead the team, while his 94 total tackles are second most.