TAMPA, Fla. — Los Angeles Rams coach Sean McVay said “changes have to be made” after his team scored only 13 points in Sunday’s loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
“Adjustments have to be made,” McVay said. “We can’t continue to go on like this. And what that looks like, I don’t necessarily have the exact answers right now.”
McVay wanted to make it clear that he wasn’t pointing fingers at others and not including himself, saying, “I’m a big part of this. I have to do better.”
“We’re gonna stay connected throughout this,” McVay said. “But we do have to be able to look inward and figure out what are some of the solutions, changes, adjustments, different things that we have to do to be able to get different results and different production from our offense.”
The 3-5 Rams, in third place in the NFC West, have scored 131 points this season. According to ESPN Stats & Information research, at this point last season, Los Angeles had scored 245 points. The 131 points are tied for the second-fewest by a defending champion in the Super Bowl era.
McVay said he thinks “everything’s got to be up for debate.”
“As coaches we’re responsible for identifying the problems and trying to provide solutions, and then the player’s job to be able to go execute and be able to get it done,” McVay said. “I have to be able to do my part first and foremost for them to be able to do theirs. And that’s where you always look at. You want to look inward first.”
Rams receiver Cooper Kupp, who had eight catches for 127 yards and a touchdown Sunday, said he agreed with McVay’s assessment.
“I’m not going to sit here and say I’ve got the answers, but I agree,” Kupp said. “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again. We got to find a way to change up and manufacture points. Just find a way to put points up on the board. The defense has done such a great job and we let them down.
“We keep saying ‘come back and go to work.’ And it’s not a shortage of effort, but at some point how much more effort can you give? You’ve got to change something. You’ve got to find a way to be efficient and score points.”
Despite scoring only 13 points, the Rams were in a position to win the game, up by four with less than two minutes left on the clock. Los Angeles couldn’t get a first down and was forced to punt, giving Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady the ball with 44 seconds remaining. Brady threw a touchdown pass to take the lead with 13 seconds left in the game.
“That is very frustrating,” Kupp said. “It makes you kind of sick to your stomach. Knowing that the guys on defense, what they’ve done. The preparation, all the work that goes into it. You get an opportunity to win three plays, average three and a third yards And we weren’t able to make anything happen.”
The Rams are the eighth defending Super Bowl champion to be under .500 through eight games, according to ESPN Stats & Information research. None of the prior seven teams rebounded to make the playoffs.
“We need to play better,” quarterback Matthew Stafford said. “I think from a player’s perspective, that’s what you can do. Just show up every single day, try to be better than you were the day before and continue to stack those days. And I think that’s the only way to approach it. If You sit there and start looking around trying to grab straws and doing all that kind of stuff to figure something out, I don’t know if that’s the right approach.
“I think the right approach is looking inward, trying to figure out how each individual person can be better. And if you do that, then good things will happen.”