It wasn't pretty for the Ravens.
With most of the first teamers having the night off and St. Louis playing their starters, the Rams dominated the first half and went on to winG Thursday's preseason finale 31-17 at the Edward Jones Dome.
But for the Ravens who were in the game – many of whom were fighting for a roster spot before Friday's roster cutdown – it could not have started much worse.
St. Louis scored on three of their first four drives and quarterback Sam Bradford moved the ball down the field with ease. He finished the day 11-of-16 for 175 yards and three touchdowns against Baltimore's backups.
"Every team does what they have to do in this game, and [Rams Head Coach Jeff Fisher] felt like he had to play his [starters] for two quarters and he played all his guys so that's what he thought he needed to do," Head Coach John Harbaugh said. "We didn't want to do that. We didn't play a lot of our guys at all."
Offensively, the Ravens struggled to move the ball and they punted or turned the ball over on five of their first six series. Their first points came midway through the third quarter.
St. Louis played their starters into the second quarter, and the group outplayed the Ravens' second and third teamers. Once the Rams pulled their starters, the game was more evenly matched and the St. Louis offense didn't score a touchdown in the second half.
"It was a great opportunity from that perspective to see how some of our backups match up," Harbaugh said. "As we look at the tape, I feel like there were probably some real good performances out there and some that weren't so good."
"I think Curtis has had a really good preseason. He's done well. He's a pro and I really like him a lot," Harbaugh said. "Whether we keep two or three quarterbacks, we have not made that decision yet. It will come down to whether we feel like we have the spot."
Some of the bright spots of the game were wide receivers
"All in all, I was able to take advantage of some opportunities," Payne said. "It's kind of out of my hands now."
Rookie running backs
"I think the hamstring is getting healthier, so we're starting to see a little more of what he's going to be capable of doing," Harbaugh said, referring to Pierce's injury at the start of training camp. "We did run the ball a lot in the first half; that was by design. … We got Bernard the reps and carries he's going to need because he's going to be important for us this year."
For the Ravens defense, the first half was a struggle as the group looked overmatched.
The Rams got on the board first with a 14-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Austin Pettis, which capped off a nine-play, 94-yard drive. St. Louis then added to their lead when Bradford found Danny Amendola for a seven-yard touchdown pass on their next series, which was set up when Taylor was strip-sacked at the Ravens 8-yard line. The fumble set the Rams up with a first-and-goal situation and they quickly capitalized to go up 14-0.
On their third series, the Rams marched down the field and Bradford hit wide receiver Michael Hoomanawanui for a nine-yard touchdown pass to extend the lead 21-0. The drive was aided by a roughing the passer penalty on outside linebacker
The Rams took a four-touchdown lead in the second half when cornerback Janoris Jenkins picked off a pass from Painter and returned it 76 yards for the touchdown.
But Painter rebounded on the next series and led the Ravens on a 14-play, 86-yard touchdown drive for their first score of the game. Painter capped off the drive with a seven-yard touchdown pass to tight end
The field goal kickers added the other points, as
The focus from Thursday's loss will quickly turn to roster cuts, as the Ravens have less than 24 hours to trim 22 players from their active roster to get to the 53-man requirement.
"You let it play out and to me those decisions become apparent," Harbaugh said.