Rtl today – American football: Cardinals can clinch NFL playoff spot with Rams win


The Arizona Cardinals are posting a league-leading 10-2 record in their Monday night clash against the Los Angeles Rams, looking to clinch their first NFL playoff spot since 2015 with a win.

Arizona quarterback Kyler Murray said the Cardinals – who have won their seven road games but are just 3-2 at home – need to get off to a good start when playing for the first time in nearly a month in their State Farm Stadium.

“It’s something that has to be different than it used to be,” Murray said. “Our closest games have been at home. We started slowly at home. We have to somehow bring that kind of energy (away) and it has to be different, because it that we did didn’t work. “

The Rams are coming off a 37-7 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars last week and are looking to gain ground over the Cardinals in the NFC West Division.

Cards coach Kliff Kingsbury expects Murray to shine on the national stage.

Despite missing three games this season with an ankle injury, the third-year pro is in MVP conversation with veterans Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers.

This season, he became the fourth youngest player to total 10,000 career yards and leads the NFL in the pass rankings. This season, he’s completed at least 70 percent of his passes in half a dozen games. Against the Chicago Bears last week, the nimble QB rushed for a high 59 yards and two touchdowns.

It was his first game back from injury, and Murray said he was, as expected, sore after that. But he expected to be at full strength against the Rams.

The Rams can come close to a Division Cardinals game with a win. Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford is eager to pull it off and erase the memory of a 37-20 loss to Arizona earlier this season.

“I think the later in the season you go into the games, there’s not a lot left. And you have to go out there and make them count,” Stafford said. “It’s a big game in the division.

With so much at stake, Murray, who won the prestigious Heisman Trophy, awarded to the best varsity player, said he was more focused on winning than on individual awards, but admitted this week that it was enjoyable. to hear his name mentioned in the MVP discussion.

“As far as being mentioned with Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, those kind of guys, they’re guys that you admire, the best to ever play the game, so it’s really an honor,” he said. he declared. “I hope we will continue to play at a high level.”

Brady’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Rodgers Green Bay Packers both have a chance for playoff spots on Sunday, but each would need not only a win but help from other results as well.

– ‘Huge game’ in Tampa –

Rodgers leads the Packers against his NFC North rivals Chicago, while Brady and the Super Bowl Bucs champion take on the Buffalo Bills.

Rodgers grabbed the headlines in the first Packers-Bears clash of the season in Chicago, where a side camera showed him yelling “I still own you” after scoring a touchdown in the 24-14 win. of the Packers.

Rodgers, a three-time NFL MVP, said he didn’t expect the Bears to backlash on Sunday.

“This comment was for the fans who were giving me the bird,” he said. “But there is chatter every time you play division matches.”

In Tampa, the Bucs host the Bills in what Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians calls “a huge game for both teams.”

“Where we are now, everything is involved with the playoffs and the standings and everything, and on top of that we don’t want to lose at home.”

Among Sunday’s other games, the Dallas Cowboys, leaders of the NFC East, will face division rivals Washington, who have won four straight wins.

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