Four biggest issues the Rams need to improve on during bye

After the Los Angeles Rams' third loss in a row Sunday afternoon in Green Bay, coach Sean McVay used the word "humbling" to describe the games, for the second consecutive week.

"Humbling is a word," wide receiver Cooper Kupp said. "Crappy would be good too. ... It's a tough place to be and like I said, we've got so many good football players, so many competent people on that sideline.

"And when things aren't working it's a frustrating feeling because like I said, there's not one person that can flip the switch and change this. It's all of us together. Being able to just collectively be a little bit better."

Los Angeles enters the bye week at 3-6 and in third place in the NFC West. Here are four things the Rams need to click into place after the bye if they want a playoff shot:

Get healthy

The Rams were without quarterback Matthew Stafford (right thumb), right tackle Rob Havenstein (calf), running back Kyren Williams (ankle) and linebacker Ernest Jones (knee) against the Packers. McVay seemed optimistic Monday that Stafford would be available after the bye and said the Rams expect to get Williams back from injured reserve in Week 12, the first week he is eligible to return.

"We're talking about a lot of significant names that have been big time contributors for us that we have not had," McVay said. "Those guys are very, very important cogs in the big picture."

However, if Stafford is unable to play in Week 11, the Rams will have a new backup quarterback, as they signed Carson Wentz and released Brett Rypien.

McVay indicated on Monday the Rams were working through options, although he was hopeful Stafford would be back and they would not have to worry about the position. Still, because 2023 fourth-round pick Stetson Bennett is on the reserve/non-football illness list, it was important the Rams sign a backup quarterback.

McVay also pointed out that the bye "comes at a good time" for a lot of the Rams younger players, who have played in three preseason and nine regular season games, which is equivalent to most college football seasons.

"Getting them rested, getting them reset, giving ourselves a chance to kind of take a step back, address really a lot of the specific nuanced things that you're asking about gives me excitement and encouragement about how we can attack this back half of the year and see what the hell happens," McVay said.

Involve Cooper Kupp in offense

In his last three games, Kupp has eight catches for 98 yards and no touchdowns. In his first two games of the season in his return from a hamstring, he had games of 118 yards and 148 yards. Kupp caught 29% of his targets on Sunday with Rypien at quarterback, which was his worst in a game with five or more targets.

McVay said Monday he thinks Kupp's dip in production is related to Stafford missing time with a thumb injury and the last three games "are more of a byproduct of some other situations not exclusive to just him playing good or anything like that."

"You look at it, we haven't had Matthew for six quarters," McVay said. "So [on Sunday he] makes a big catch on the third down and long and then catches an in-breaker. He had two catches, but the production that we had offensively was so minimal that it's hard to even talk about that.

"You look at the Dallas game and you look at the Pittsburgh game and a lot of situations, they're doubling him in some of those known passing situations. Very similar to what started to happen in even in the latter parts of '21, if he's getting attention then it opens up opportunities for other people."

Play complementary football

The Rams have struggled to play complementary football for most of the season, and it's something McVay, Stafford and defensive tackle Aaron Donald have all stressed.

It was never more evident than against the Packers, when the Rams started the second half by ending two Packers drives by forcing and recovering a fumble. Los Angeles did not score after either of those takeaways, punting once and missing a 49-yard field goal to end the next drive.

"If our defense can play [as well as it has], get some of those turnovers, we got to be able to capitalize on that," McVay said.

The Rams have scored 13 points off turnovers this season, the fewest in the NFL, according to ESPN Stats & Information. Three of those four scores (and 10 of those 13 points) came in the same game: Week 6 against the Arizona Cardinals.

Score more points

It's simple, but the Rams offense hasn't scored enough for most of the season. The Rams are averaging 19.8 points per game, which is tied for 20th in the NFL. They've scored more than 20 points once in their last five games, and that was at home to the 1-8 Cardinals. The Rams are 1-4 in that stretch.

The Rams' young defense, which has exceeded expectations, has kept them in games in a tough stretch of the schedule, including losses to the 8-2 Philadelphia Eagles, 5-3 Pittsburgh Steelers, 5-3 Cincinnati Bengals and 5-3 San Francisco 49ers.

"[On Sunday], I thought our defense kept us in that game," McVay said. "We can't expect to win any games if we don't play better offensively. We all know that. Our players know that. That's very clear cut."