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Rams’ defense pressuring opposing quarterbacks more than any other team

Los Angeles Chargers v Los Angeles Rams

LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 23: Quarterback Philip Rivers #17 of the Los Angeles Chargers gets sacked during the third quarter of the game against the Los Angeles Rams at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on September 23, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

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Everyone knows the Rams’ offense is setting the world on fire, but the Rams’ defense probably deserves more credit for the team’s 4-0 start.

Particularly impressive is the Rams’ pass rush, which is putting pressure on opposing quarterbacks more frequently than any other defense in the NFL. According to Chris Trapasso of the Buffalo News, using data compiled by Pro Football Focus, the Rams’ defense has faced 157 dropbacks and pressured the quarterback on 65 of those dropbacks. That’s a pressure rate of 41.4 percent, the best in the NFL.

The Rams have only recorded eight sacks this season, with defensive tackles Aaron Donald and Ndamukong Suh as the team’s co-leaders with two sacks apiece. But sacks don’t tell the whole story. Pressuring the opposing quarterback into getting rid of the ball quickly is an important part of having a good defense even if you don’t take down the quarterback. For the Rams in particular, who have spent most of the season playing from ahead, they’re able to tee off on a quarterback who’s trying to bring the team back from behind.

Keeping Jared Goff upright is the most important priority for the Rams, but getting after the opposing passer is also a very important element in their success this year.