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Matthew Stafford to IR underscores disaster scenario for Rams, NFL

Chris Simms and Mike Florio preview the NFC West showdown between the Seattle Seahawks and Los Angeles Rams, where injuries continue to haunt the defending Super Bowl champions.

Once upon a time, the folks in Hollywood loved making disaster movies. Now, the primary local NFL team is starring in one.

Already at 3-8 through 11 games, the Rams are one of the worst defending Super Bowl champions of all time. (Of course, several franchises out there would love to have that title.) And with quarterback Matthew Stafford now on injured reserve, it won’t get any better for the Rams.

It also won’t get any better for the NFL.

Today’s game against the Seahawks has a small regional footprint. But the next three, all of which Stafford will miss, land in major, national, standalone, non-flex-able spots.

Thursday night, December 8: Raiders at Rams.

Monday night, December 19: Rams at Packers.

Christmas Day: Broncos at Rams.

Stink, stank, stunk.

And there’s nothing that can be done about it. The Rams are stuck. The NFL is stuck. The viewing public is stuck.

The good news is that maybe something like this will cause the NFL to become even more creative when it comes to late-season scheduling. With Sunday-to-Monday flexes in the offing, why not make it a possibility for any and all standalone, nationally-televised games from Thanksgiving through the end of the regular season?

Moving games to different days has been frowned upon by the league, given that fans routinely schedule trips to faraway cities in order to attend. With that line being crossed in the looming Sunday-Monday/Monday-Sunday shift, why not fully embrace it?

It’s a question that could become very salient as we suffer through a trio of Rams games involving a Rams team that is a far cry from the Rams team that won the Super Bowl earlier this year.