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  1. #1
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    Attitude Adjustment

    Rams Set Sights on Attitude Adjustment
    Wednesday, November 10, 2004

    By Nick Wagoner
    Staff Writer

    With perhaps the most important game of the season at hand, the Rams are making changes in many areas. There might be some changes to the personnel, maybe a few tweaks to the gameplan, but the one area where a change is almost certain is clear: attitude.

    St. Louis has lost its past two games, losing a shot to open a comfortable lead in the NFC West Division. Rams coach Mike Martz said he has not been pleased with the team’s performance recently and things need to change, not just in scheme and personnel, but on the mental side also.

    “This is a game of attitude, pure and simple,” Martz said. “This is not about ability, it never has been, never will be. Everybody in this league has got ability to play. Everybody’s talented. Everybody’s fast, everybody’s big, everybody’s strong. If you think that’s the difference, you’re sorely mistaken. This is purely a game of attitude.”

    Essentially, the Rams need to toughen up to get a win Sunday. That is easier said than done against a Seattle team that doesn’t need a long memory to get fired up for this game. Rewind to the Oct. 10 meeting between the teams and you will find one of the best comebacks in NFL history, as St. Louis bounced back from a 17-point deficit to claim a stunning 33-27 overtime win. Actually, don’t rewind anything; Martz said he doesn’t need to watch any film to get excited for a game.

    “I don’t need to look at a tape to get energized,” Martz said. “Not me, I don’t have to look at a tape to go to a happy place to get energized. That’s not who I am, sorry.”

    With so much at stake this week, the thoughts of that game should be the furthest thing from the Rams’ collective mind. This game could be the defining game of the division this season. The Seahawks are 5-3, but have two losses in the division. The Rams are 4-4, but undefeated in the division.

    A win puts St. Louis firmly in control of the division and gives it an inside track to the playoffs. A loss could severely damage a team that is reeling and needs a win, not just to keep pace in the playoff hunt, but also to build some much-needed confidence.

    Nobody is giving up hope on the season, yet. There is plenty of season left, but the sense of urgency is certainly at its peak. Martz said the time has come for some of the younger players to make an impact.

    “I would expect us to come out and compete better,” Martz said. “I think that’s what I would expect, as a football team. We have core guys we can hang our hat on. You can get them up in the middle of the night, go out and practice and you’ll get all they got. What we are trying to do is get the rest of the guys up to that level. We were there for awhile and we fell off a little bit in a couple of key areas.”

    There could be some alterations in those key areas, but it appears no decision has been made. At practice on Wednesday, a number of offensive line options were used. For the most part the normal offensive line played on the top line, but Blaine Saipaia saw some action at right tackle and Tom Nutten and Larry Turner took some repetitions at left guard. None of that means much now, though. Any and all personnel decisions probably won’t take shape until closer to gametime.

    There has been plenty of time for voicing opinions and making their presence felt, but that time has passed. With so much on the line, there is only time for focus on one thing: changing attitudes and playing better. Martz said Monday that he wanted some of his players to take some accountability and start making plays.

    Martz said he doesn’t care much about verbal encouragement; he just wants the product on the field to improve.

    “Nobody is going to voice anything to me,” Martz said. “We don’t hold hands and get in a séance and sing Kum Ba Ya My Lord. I’m not into that. We have the direction we’re going, you’re on the train or you’re not. Get out, period. I know where I’m going, you’re either with me or you’re not.

    “I am not happy with how we are playing period, regardless of a division race or anything else. I think the way we have played in the last two games is embarrassing. Not so much, whether you win or lose the game, just the way we play the game, period. We are going to do everything we can to rectify that.”

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  2. #2
    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: Attitude Adjustment

    Quote Originally Posted by Yodude
    Blaine Saipaia saw some action at right tackle
    ......who?
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  3. #3
    RamsFanSam's Avatar
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    Re: Attitude Adjustment

    Quote Originally Posted by NickSeiler
    ......who?
    Some guy on the Practice Squad, I think....

  4. #4
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    Re: Attitude Adjustment

    Ah, I figured. They should start handing out numbers to people who come attend practices. "When we call your number, grab some pads..."
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  5. #5
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    Re: Attitude Adjustment

    Just let me in there.....I may be a 5'2" female, but I could do the job, from what I hear....

  6. #6
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    Re: Attitude Adjustment

    I like this new attitude Mike is displaying. **** or get off the pot. He knows if he can't get his players to do it, he'll be asked to.
    He must have seen something on the practice field Wed. that really boiled his loins.

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  7. #7
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    Re: Attitude Adjustment

    The attitudes of some players in the NFL really are ridiculous, though. I was listening to Sirius talk radio and some caller was talking about how after a dismal performance against the Chargers, Aaron Brooks was smiling while he was walking off the field.

    You have to wonder what the league would look like if all contracts were performance based and guys didn't just get their money for showing up.
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  8. #8
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    Re: Attitude Adjustment

    Blaine Saipaia is not on the practice squad, he's on the active roster. I expect it's just an experimental thing since I'm pretty sure he's mainly a guard.

  9. #9
    elAcky Guest

    Re: Attitude Adjustment

    Attitude is what Robert Thomas are missing (going back to the 'nice guy' award he recently won) and Polley, not talent

  10. #10
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    Re: Attitude Adjustment

    You have to wonder what the league would look like if all contracts were performance based and guys didn't just get their money for showing up.[/QUOTE]
    That is a great idea! Get paid by performance . Then we will see the desire to win really come out. Not only that, ticket prices would come down considerably and so would BEER PRICES!!!!! We all win! :redface:
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  11. #11
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    Re: Attitude Adjustment

    Quote Originally Posted by theodus69
    That is a great idea! Get paid by performance . Then we will see the desire to win really come out. Not only that, ticket prices would come down considerably and so would BEER PRICES!!!!! We all win! :redface:
    Seriously though. I'm sure the union would never agree to a league-wide agreement for performance-based contracts only, but I think it would really cause players to go out and give their best every week if they knew their paycheck was depending on it.
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