“There were very few times where we were caught on the wrong side of the puck,” Wheeler said. “We were trying not to let their top guys get top speed going, trying not to let them play with a lot of time and space.”
Los Angeles finished the season with a point differential of plus-60 at home, eighth best in the NFL. Last season, the Rams finished with a point differential of minus-86 at home, second worst in the league.
Atlanta finished the regular season with a 5-3 road record. In the five wins, the Falcons averaged 27.2 points. In the three losses, they averaged just 12.3 points.
The Rams have won five of their last six playoff games at home. This will be the first Rams home playoff game since L.A.’s 20-0 win over the Cowboys Jan. 4, 1986.
Barkley announced on Instagram that he had signed with Roc Nation Sports’ Kim Miale, who also represents NFL players like Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant.
“We think he’s the best player in this draft, and we’re thrilled he became part of our family,” Miale said.
Barkley told ESPN on Wednesday that it was a “really easy decision” to sign with Roc Nation, and he revealed that his family was invited to Jay-Z’s home in Los Angeles to talk about his business future.
“A lot of people came around my way, but they were focused on me and (Roc Nation Sports) did a a great job at selling my family on setting me up for life, bringing value outside of football,” Barkley said. “I felt like it was harder for other agencies to pitch that family feel when they were working with 30 or 40 guys.”
Ward was released three hours later just before noon after posting $2,500 bond.
The Tampa Bay Times reports that Ward was initially arrested Oct. 25 prior to the team’s Week 8 loss to the Panthers. Although he was not home at the time, a woman allowed police to enter his apartment when they responded to an alarm and claimed the 99.9 grams of marijuana seen “in plain view” belonged to Ward.
The woman, identified in the report as Ciera Woody, later claimed the marijuana was hers and faces the same felony possession charge as Ward.
While being interviewed by police, Ward admitted he was aware of the marijuana inside the jars and said “he occasionally smoked out of.”
Los Angeles rookie WR Cooper Kupp had 62 receptions this season, the most by a rookie in Rams franchise history.
Atlanta QB Matt Ryan finished the regular season with 4,095 passing yards, his seventh consecutive season of more than 4,000 yards through the air. That’s tied for third-longest such streak in NFL history.