Divisional Playoff Mismatches
Panthers at Rams
FS Aeneas Williams vs. QB Jake Delhomme
This season, Aeneas Williams moved from cornerback to free safety and played at a Pro Bowl level. The Rams rely on his quarterbacking the secondary, never being out of position, and being able to break on the ball after reading the quarterback's eyes. Last week against the Cowboys, Jake Delhomme had a fantastic game, but it was thanks to his offensive line buying him time against the Dallas blitz and being able to exploit single coverage on his wide receivers. The Rams won't have to blitz as often to put pressure on the Panthers quarterback, and Williams will be able to make plays on the ball. The Rams defensive philosophy is geared almost entirely on the pass. They rank 20th in the league in rushing yards allowed, giving up 123.8 per game, but their run defense has gotten worse as the season has progressed, allowing 141 over the last nine games. The Panthers will try to exploit this with plenty of running plays for Stephen Davis, but if the Rams figure they can give up four yards on first down and another four on second down if they force the incompletion on third.