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Sunday Night Football: Matthew Stafford shines in L.A. debut, Rams beat Bears 34-14

Matthew Stafford begins the second half the same way he began the first, as Cooper Kupp found himself all alone behind the Bears secondary for a 56-yard touchdown to put the Rams up 20-7 on Chicago.

The Rams executed a trade for Matthew Stafford because they felt like he could be the missing piece to their offense.

It’s a small sample size, but the deal sure looks good after Week One.

Stafford was excellent in his Rams debut, piloting the team to a 34-14 victory over the Bears on Sunday Night Football.

He was on point from Los Angeles’ opening drive, hitting receiver Van Jefferson for a 67-yard touchdown on the third play. He was similarly efficient on the Rams’ first drive of the second half, hitting a wide open Cooper Kupp for a 56-yard touchdown on the fourth play of the possession.

Stafford finished 20-of-26 passing for 321 yards with three touchdowns — averaging 12.3 yards per attempt. His final pass of the night was a touchdown to Robert Woods with the receiver tapping his toes in the back of the end zone to remove all doubt for L.A.

Kupp led the team with seven receptions for 108 yards with one touchdown. He had another wiped off the board when he was ruled just short of the end zone in the third quarter. Tight end Tyler Higbee had five catches for 68 yards.

With Cam Akers out for the year, Darrell Henderson started at running back and took 16 carries for 70 yards with one touchdown.

While Chicago’s defense couldn’t stop Los Angeles, the offense had some decent moments throughout the night — but not nearly enough. Rookie Justin Fields played a handful of snaps at quarterback, rotating in with Andy Dalton. He completed his first NFL passing attempt for 9 yards and took a zone-read for a 3-yard score.

And the Bears were able to sustain some drives, netting 24 first downs and going 5-of-11 on third down. But the visitors finished 0-of-4 on fourth down, with two of those failed conversions consequentially coming in the first half.

Dalton finished 27-of-38 for 206 yards with an interception. Running back David Montgomery was a bright spot, gaining 108 yards on 16 carries with a score.

But Chicago was unable to spoil the grand opening of SoFi Stadium, with the Rams soundly winning their first game in front of fans at their new home.

The Rams are now 5-0 in season openers under head coach Sean McVay. They’ll travel to Indianapolis to face the 0-1 Colts next weekend.

The Bears will have their home opener against the 1-0 Bengals next Sunday.