Rams starters struggle with basics in preseason loss to Titans

A few thoughts on the St. Louis Rams' 27-14 loss to the Tennessee Titans:

What it means: We already knew that the Rams had a lot of work to do on offense, but if it's possible, a group that didn't score a touchdown on two drives last week took a step back on twice as many opportunities against the Titans. Making matters worse, the defense had some issues, with the first-team unit allowing 6.4 yards per play on three series, though it managed to limit the damage to three points. The result doesn't matter, but the Rams' struggles to do the basics, such as blocking and tackling, should be of more concern. Those fundamentals have been issues in recent preseasons and carried over to the regular season. The Rams can't afford for that to happen again.

Play of the game: Nearly seven quarters into the preseason, the Rams finally got their first touchdown when quarterback Case Keenum lofted a perfect deep ball to receiver Chris Givens, who caught it in stride for an 80-yard touchdown.

Stat of note: 2.4, as in 2.4 yards per carry. That's what the Rams' first-team offense mustered on nine attempts before calling it a night. If the Rams are to be a run-first team, that number must improve. This is where the blocking comes in.

Stat of note, part II: 5.7, as in 5.7 yards per carry allowed by the Rams' first-team defense. The Rams boast a dynamic pass rush but it won't mean much if they don't stop the run first. This is where the tackling comes in.

Injuries of note: The Rams made it through without losing any potential starters to obvious or serious injuries.

What's next: The Rams head home for the final two weeks of the preseason, starting with Saturday's game against the Indianapolis Colts at the Edward Jones Dome.