THOUSAND OAKS — Aaron Donald has had some bad days on the football field, so first-year Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris looked at how Donald reacts to setbacks.
“He’s pretty serious in general anyway,” Morris said. “But he’s especially upset after the defeat.”
The Rams’ loss to the Arizona Cardinals was particularly disappointing for Donald, whose own stat line showed zero sacks, losses and tackles for quarterback hits, the 10th time in 121 NFL games that he was empty in all those big-play columns. Was.
By Tuesday, Donald was back in a good mood, probably because he looks forward to another fight with quarterback Russell Wilson when the Rams (3-1) face the Seattle Seahawks (2-1) at Lumen Field on Thursday night. -2) will happen.
Donald, 30, has been chasing 32-year-old Wilson at least twice a season for seven years. He has dismissed Wilson more than any other quarterback: 13 times in 10 Rams wins, including two in a playoff win last January; And twice the damage in five rams.
“I have a lot of respect for the way he plays,” Donald said. “We have to find a way to put pressure on him, find ways to influence him, so that we can win this game.”
This will be the second time in five days that the Rams will face the mobile quarterback. On Sunday, the other Rams were able to sack Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray three times. But he survived Donald.
“You just find a way to get better,” said Donald, not seeming upset at all. “They were able to stay in a position where they had a lead and were able to stick to a game plan where we didn’t get too many opportunities to run into quarterbacks.
“It’s just football. You’re going to have good days, bad days and fine days. It can’t affect you.”
Anyway, Morris said he didn’t mean to “mess up” in a bad way.
“Probably more in a serious-behaved, work-around way,” Morris said. “He’s just as worried as anyone else out there to get out there.”
While opponents seem to have identified David Long Jr. as a soft spot in the Rams secondary, Murray’s 41-yard touchdown pass is the latest play in the Cardinals’ 37-20 win to wide receiver AJ Green targeting the cornerback on Sunday .
Speaking about Long, who is debuting since the free-agent departure of Troy Hill, Morris on Tuesday calmed his criticism.
He said, ‘Last week his game was not good. There’s no secret about it,” the defensive coordinator said. “He’s one of those guys, we’ve seen him struggle before. We have seen him struggle in practice and have seen him come back.
“We’ve seen him struggle in this game, with two opportunities to play on the ball and not to make them. When he gets the chance (again), I’m sure he will.”
Morris indicated that the Rams could make more use of fourth-round draft substitute Robert Rochelle and various defensive packages.
“I’m not counting David, but he’s definitely one of the guys we need,” Morris said. “He’s got a lot of mental toughness, and I’ve seen a bunch of it already in my short time here.”
Outside linebacker Leonard Floyd stopped short of criticizing a rough-and-player call on what would have been Murray’s second sack in third-down-goal play late in the first half of Sunday.
“Yeah, it was a tough call. The referee made the best decision, I think,” Floyd said on Tuesday. “It’s tough, but (you) move on to the next play. You have to try to stop them from scoring.”
Floyd was seen hitting Murray with the palm of his hand in the helmet while bringing down the quarterback. The penalty awarded the Cardinals first place. He scored a field goal at halftime to make it 24-13.
Floyd reported progress in playing through an ankle pain that kept him out of practice for a week in August. “I’m feeling great,” said the linebacker, praising the rehabilitation process set out by Reggie Scott, the Rams’ vice president of sports medicine and performance.
With Darrell Henderson (ribs), tight ends Tyler Higby (ankle) and Johnny Mund (shoulder) and safety Taylor Rapp (ankle) on target to face the Seahawks, the Rams’ injury reports showed nothing serious. The official injury designations for Thursday’s game come out on Wednesday.