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LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Los Angeles Rams had a short week

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    November 12, 2018 7:55 PM PST

    to prepare for Sunday’s game against the Arizona Cardinals.It didn’t look as if they needed extra time.The Rams dominated the Cardinals 34-0. Los Angeles has won its first two games for the first time since 2001 Jared Goff Color Rush Jersey , when it started 6-0 en route to the third Super Bowl appearance in franchise history.“We responded the right way physically and mentally (after a 33-13 win over Oakland last Monday),” Rams coach Sean McVay said.“It is a credit to our players. Offensively we were able to capitalize on some short fields while the defense and special teams were outstanding.”Todd Gurley ran for three touchdowns while Jared Goff threw for 354 yards and a touchdown.The Rams allowed only five first downs, recorded tackles for loss on six running plays and didn’t allow the Cardinals to cross midfield until the final minute of the game.On special teams, punter Johnny Hekker ended up having to do placekicking duty after Greg Zuerlein strained his groin in pregame warmups. JoJo Natson, who was signed on Wednesday, averaged 22.2 yards on six punt returns.The Rams had 10 offensive plays of 17 yards or more. The Cardinals’ longest play went for 15 yards.“You’re always expected to win, but when you can just go into the game with a confidence just knowing that you just have so many talented and great players on the team it makes you happy,” said Gurley, who had three rushing touchdowns for the second time in his four-year career and finished with 42 yards on 19 carries.Goff, who has six 300-yard games, completed 24 of 32 passes, marking the third time in 24 starts he has completed more than 70 percent of his passes when making 25 or more attempts. The 354 yards were only a yard off his career high, set last season against Houston.Goff completed passes to six receivers including Brandin Cooks Orlando Pace Jersey Black Friday , who had seven receptions for 159 yards.The Cardinals, who went three-and-out on five of their 10 drives, fell to 0-2 for the first time since 2005. Sam Bradford, the first overall draft pick by the Rams in 2010, was 17 of 27 for 90 yards in his first start against his former team.“When you look at the game it’s a little deja vu from last week,” Arizona coach Steve Wilks said. “We just couldn’t find ourselves making a play. A lot of things that we need to address moving forward across the board, personnel, everything, scheme, and we’ll look to do that as we get back on Monday.”The Rams opened the scoring early in the second quarter with Gurley’s 11-yard run. They successfully went for the 2-point conversion on Gurley’s run.Hekker’s 20-yard field goal extended the lead to 11-0 before Gurley had a 1-yard touchdown and 2-point conversion on the final plays of the first half.The Rams extended their lead to 27-0 in the third quarter on Gurley’s 2-yard run and Goff’s pass to Malcolm Brown on the conversion. They added another touchdown in the fourth quarter when Goff connected with a wide-open Tyler Higbee for 3 yards.Since trailing Oakland 13-10 at halftime in the opener, the Rams have scored 57 unanswered points over their past six quarters.“If we can play elite defense like that and put up zeroes across the board and let our offense just run up and down the field, so be it,” defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh said.BLANKING ARIZONAThis is the second time in three games that the Rams have shut out the Cardinals. Los Angeles has scored 32 or more points in all three meetings and has won by an average of 27.7 points.SPECIAL TEAMS ADJUSTMENTSThe Rams went for the 2-pointers after their first three touchdowns due to Zuerlein’s injury. Hekker handled kickoff duties as well as punting.JoJo Natson , who was signed after 2017 All-Pro Pharoh Cooper was lost for the year with an ankle injury, had a strong debut as the team’s returner, averaging 22.2 yards on six punt returns and one kick return for 22 yards. His 60-yard punt return in the second quarter helped set up Gurley’s second touchdown.McVay said he doesn’t know what Zuerlein’s status is going forward.INJURIESCardinals: WR Larry Fitzgerald injured his hamstring during the fourth quarter and did not return. Fitzgerald said after the game that he could have continued to play but that he didn’t know how effective he would have been.UP NEXTCardinals: Have two straight home games, beginning next Sunday against Chicago.Rams: Host the Chargers in the first regular-season Battle of Los Angeles between the two teams. THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (AP) — All-Pro kick returner Pharoh Cooper will be placed on the Los Angeles Rams‘ injured reserve list after he severely sprained his ankle in the season opener at Oakland.Cooper will need surgery to repair his ankle, coach Sean McVay said Wednesday.The injury throws an early obstacle into the path of the Rams (1-0), who won the NFC West last season with four Pro Bowlers leading their nearly flawless special teams units. All four returned this season, with All-Pro kicker Greg Zuerlein and All-Pro punter Johnny Hekker alongside Cooper and long snapper Jake McQuaide.“What a great competitor and a tough guy,” McVay said about Cooper. “It’s unfortunate, but I think if there’s anybody that’s going to respond the right way and just do what he can to get back sooner than later, it’s going to be Pharoh.”Cooper emerged as an elite kick returner last season, his second with the Rams. The South Carolina product easily led the NFL with 1,331 combined yards on kickoffs and punt returns Deacon Jones Color Rush Jersey , also finishing first in the league in yards per kickoff return (27.4) and second in yards per punt return (12.5). He also returned a kickoff 103 yards for a touchdown early in the season.Cooper also caught 11 passes for 84 yards as a depth receiver for the Rams during the worst-to-first transformation of their offense. But his outstanding season ended on a mediocre note in the Rams’ home playoff loss to Atlanta when he muffed a punt and fumbled on a kickoff return in the first half, directly leading to 10 points by the Falcons in their 26-13 victory.With Cooper’s ostensible backup, Michael Thomas, also dealing with injuries, the Rams’ primary kick returner on Sunday is likely to be JoJo Natson, McVay said. Natson was re-signed by the Rams on Wednesday, 12 days after being waived in their late roster cutdowns.Natson, who is also a receiver, appeared in seven games last season as a rookie with the New York Jets, returning 16 kickoffs and 16 punts after starting the season on their practice squad. He signed with the Rams in July.He spent the past several days back home in Florida after missing out on a spot on the Rams’ roster despite having a solid, occasionally exciting preseason. Natson got the call from Rams special teams coach John Fassel on Tuesday and jumped on a plane to the West Coast a few hours later.Natson watched last weekend’s games on his couch, but he’ll be in uniform when the Rams open their home schedule against the Arizona Cardinals.“I didn’t expect for the turnaround to be this quick at all, but I’m just thankful for the opportunity to come around again Sean Mannion Jersey Black Friday ,” Natson said. “It’s a tough process at first. It was always my dream to play in the NFL, but when things don’t go my way, I just keep pushing on. I just stay positive.”Natson knows he is small by NFL standards. He lists himself at about 153 pounds and 5-foot-7, or “5-8 on a good day.”“It’s light, but you know, you can’t hit what you can’t catch,” Natson said. “I just go out there and just try and play with my heart, because that’s what I live off, my heart, and everything else takes care of itself.”NOTES: With a short week of preparation following their Monday night game in Oakland, the Rams held only a light workout Wednesday and concentrated on the mental aspects of preparation. McVay plans to hold a regular Thursday practice as they get back into standard game preparation. … LB Mark Barron still isn’t practicing while he attempts to return from an ankle injury. … Thomas also missed practice with a hip/groin injury.