THOUSAND OAKS — The Rams were all set to note what a difference a week makes.
Then they sat and absorbed another numbing Monday night football game.
Sunday’s 34-7 blowout of the Cardinals in Arizona completely changed the mood around the club’s California Lutheran University practice headquarters Monday.
Jared Goff threw for more than 400 yards for the first time this season, Todd Gurley II just missed a 100-yard game on the ground, and the defense only allowed one offensive touchdown for the fourth time in five weeks.
“I really like the way they responded after last week,” said Rams coach Sean McVay, referring to last Monday night’s 45-6 humiliation by the Baltimore Ravens. “I think that says as much about our ballclub as anything.”
The Seattle Seahawks’ defeat of the Minnesota Vikings on Monday night football tempered that excitement.
The Rams’ margin for error was reduced again. To zero.
The Seahawks moved into the No. 1 playoff seed in the National Conference, slipping the San Francisco 49ers to fifth.
Both teams are three games ahead of Los Angeles with four weeks remaining.
“Four weeks is a lot of time,” McVay said. “If you don’t take care of your own business, it doesn’t matter what the other teams are doing.”
With Seattle coming to the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Sunday evening, the Rams could have really used a Minnesota victory.
“We had a great performance (at Arizona) Sunday,” said McVay. “The toughest part of performance is consistency, which we obviously have not been very good at this year.
“We have to do it one game at a time, for four weeks.”
The Seahawks compounded the Rams’ troubles with a last-minute victory on a Thursday night opening Week 5, four days after a stunning home loss to Tampa Bay.
Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson hit them with four touchdown passes that night. A third straight loss, the 49ers at the Coliseum, worsened the conference record critical to wildcard playoff aspirations.
“It was especially encouraging to see Todd get those hard-earned (95) yards,” McVay said. “They enabled us to remain balanced on offense.
“We’ve got the Seahawks this week, and we get the 49ers later, plus they play each other. So we have our chance.”