Last night’s game on Monday Night Football delivered, big time.
In the great city of Los Angeles, a city hurting after the recent wildfires that destroyed hundreds of homes as well as the shooting at a bar in Ventura County, the Kansas City Chiefs and LA Rams gave an extraordinary, record-setting show of offense and defense.
By the numbers, 105 combined points, more than a thousand yards of offense, 13 total touchdowns, and a hometown victory for the Rams. Both offenses and defenses shined for almost comical numbers; just go and look at the stats for yourself and try your best to not be bewildered.
Boy, was this game a chess match. A shootout. A duel. A battle. Or as legendary WWE commentator Jim Ross would call a heavily brutal wrestling match, a “slobberknocker.”
Both quarterbacks, with not even three years of NFL experience under their belt, made for an all-time classic that smashed Vegas odds and drew national attention. Patrick Mahomes and Jared Goff, both, in their own regards, highly touted and popular stars this year, together threw for 891 yards and 10 touchdowns. This type of thing you’d expect out of veteran quarterbacks like Brady, Brees, Rodgers, Roethlisberger… but no, it was the new guys. All of them.
It’s just simply the way the game was played. It could’ve been that the location was at in a general college football venue, or maybe it was both powerhouse teams are already near-locks to win their divisions. But overall, you can’t say every player on each team was a veteran in their own right. But almost every one of them was a playmaker.
Names like Tyreek Hill, Travis Kelce, and Kareem Hunt helped accelerate the Kansas City offense, all of whom haven’t even been in the NFL for that long (Kelce was drafted in 2013; the others were in later drafts).
On the other side of the ball, where the Rams defense can be regarded as the best in football right now, Samson Ebukam recovered a fumble for a touchdown, scored a pick-six, and racked up several hits on Mahomes. Definitely earned himself the game MVP.
But the most disruptive player on the Rams defense, much to no one’s surprise, was Aaron Donald. He was an animal, a fiend, a force to be reckoned with. He was just as unstoppable as any quarterback or wide receiver who was playing Monday night. Consistently bursting through the Chiefs’ offensive line, Donald was the man who forced two of Mahomes’ fumbles, further proving that he’s the best defensive player in football right now. As if his resume didn’t show that already.
With defense being the most looked-at aspect of this year’s upcoming draft, Donald is the pinnacle of what every prospect should aim to be and look to surpass. Well, with the inclusion of Bears linebacker Khalil Mack, of course.
Every single player participating in last night’s bout knew how it special the game would be, but didn’t expect that it would lead to one of the best games we’ve seen in a while. Most of them felt that watching the game would’ve been better than playing in it.
Rams defensive end Michael Brockers said afterwards in the locker room, “I just really wanna go home and watch it. To be in it was stressful. To watch a game like that… that’s what football is made for.
Rodger Safford, Rams offensive guard, described the unfolding events as him “probably losing two or three years of my life with all those heart attacks.” There were six lead changes during Monday night’s game, with three of them occurring in the fourth quarter.
What’s important to remember now that this game is all said and done is that this is the future of football. This game showed the progress of change within the league. The only thing close to the intensity of this Chiefs-Rams matchup was last year’s Super Bowl, which featured 1,151 yards of total offense. Looking at these two examples, there’s really no way that they would’ve been played in any year before 2018; pivotal matchups and the electric hype leading up to it, this is how the league could look for years to come.
Not to mention, all of these stars who came out to play Monday night will continue to shine for plenty more games to come, or even years for that matter. This new class of studs and standouts have shown us that the entertainment level of football is in good hands, and it starts with each and every player and coach that took part in last night’s Los Angeles spectacle.