Coming off a much-needed 31-17 road win against Arizona, the St. Louis Rams (4-6-1) stay at home to take on the 49ers in what can easily be described as a season-changing game. As the end of the 2012 regular season fast approaches, the NFC playoff picture has not yet been written in stone. And although the Rams' chances are slim, there still remains some hope for the young team from St. Louis.
A 4-6-1 record looms over the team after a 3-2 start to the year. The rarely seen tie in the NFL came in the first game against San Francisco, who is 8-2-1 and the leader in the NFC West. They square off in a rematch this Sunday, and the Rams will ultimately have a chance to write their own destiny for the playoffs.
There are five regular-season games left. After the game against the 49ers, the Rams move on to play the Bills, Vikings, Buccaneers and then a huge road game in Seattle to cap it all off. Each team remaining on the schedule poses a threat to the Rams' wild-card hopes. With their toughest matchup in front of them this Sunday, St. Louis is eyeing a final record of 9-6-1.
One game at a time is the new motto. The red-hot defense of St. Louis is ready to once again see recently named 49ers starter Colin Kaepernick on the field. Only this time, they have a chance to game plan for him. With the Rams being the ones taking Alex Smith out in the first place with a concussion, they are the very ones now looking to give Kaepernick a loss in the third start of his career.
As the Rams take on their divisional foes in St. Louis this weekend, it suddenly becomes a game within a game. It's a chance to give a loss to the division leader. It's an opportunity to gain redemption against the tie in San Francisco. Most importantly, it's a game that could potentially breathe new life into the up-and-down season St. Louis has had so far.