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Rams finish regular season with backup-heavy loss to San Francisco

By in Press Enterprise on January 1, 2018

By Rich Hammond

LOS ANGELES — This calendar year had a couple ugly bookends for the Rams, who looked dismal on Jan. 1 and Dec. 31. Fortunately for them, the other 363 days will be remembered with great fondness.

Photos: Rams fall to 49ers

The regular season is done. It ended Sunday with a backup-fueled, preseason-tinged 34-13 loss to San Francisco at the Coliseum, a game that did nothing but mildly shuffle the NFC playoff seedings.

The loss left the Rams (11-5) with the No. 3 seed. They will host Atlanta (10-6) in a first-round playoff game next weekend in the franchise’s first postseason appearance since 2003.

Sunday’s game had the potential to impact who the Rams would play in the first round, but given the balanced nature of the NFC, it didn’t matter much. The difference between the Panthers and Falcons is slim, and the Rams just wanted to avoid injuries Sunday.

So those weren’t really the Rams on the field Sunday. More like the “Ra,” or the junior varsity, given that most of the starters never left the sideline. Not much will be remembered from the game.

Almost every Rams starter sat out, including running back Todd Gurley, who was inactive and lost his chance at the NFL rushing title, which instead went to Kansas City’s Kareem Hunt.

The Rams, in spite of their meager offense, did manage to finish the season as the NFL’s highest-scoring team. They became only the second team in NFL history, and the first since the 49ers in 1965, to go from last to first in scoring in one year. Those 49ers did it in a 14-team league.

Never had a team gone from No. 32 to No. 1, and the Rams finished this season with 465 points, more than the 2016 total of 224. On an otherwise tepid day, that was something […]    

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