Los Angeles Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford’s playing status remains in the air after a loss to the New Orleans Saints in NFL Week 11.
At the season’s beginning, the Week 12 matchup between the Kansas City Chiefs and Los Angeles Rams looked like a tantalizing matchup. Both teams had deep playoff runs in 2021, with the Rams capturing a Super Bowl win. But, everything has been going wrong for the Rams who are currently 3-7 after Week 11. What is worse, their quarterback Matthew Stafford is in concussion evaluation once again.
The 14-year veteran cleared the concussion protocol Nov. 18 after missing the Rams’ Week 10 game. Alas, Stafford went to the locker room in the third quarter during the Rams’ loss to the New Orleans Saints. The team clarified following the game that Stafford was not in the concussion protocol, but being evaluated. He will undergo “further tests and procedures” on Monday and Tuesday, according to ESPN.
“As far as it relates to Matthew, we’re gonna be smart for him,” Rams head coach Sean McVay said. “He’s such a warrior, he’s such a stud competitor. I know how badly he wants to be out there and thought he played really well with the opportunities that he did have.”
Stafford previously entered his team’s concussion protocol on Nov. 8, after the Rams’ Week 9 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. While McVay and the team insisted Stafford did not exhibit any concussion symptoms ahead of Sunday’s game, his health and playing status remain questionable. The NFL has had many high-profile concussion cases in 2022, including Miami quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and Kansas City’s own wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster.
This injury is notable to Chiefs fans because of Stafford’s availability drastically changes their winning odds. If the Rams face Kansas City without Stafford, the Chiefs become the heavy favorites in Week 12. Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp is still unavailable, but Los Angeles would still have a fighting chance with Stafford under center. Rams backup quarterback Bryce Perkins hardly puts fear in the Chiefs defensive unit, and the running game is the league’s second worst (76.1 rushing yards per game).
Stafford has faced the Chiefs three times in his career, with only one win. However, he averages a good performance against Kansas City with 267 passing yards and three passing touchdowns. He and Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes could have had an excellent quarterback duel, but Stafford’s health must come first.