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  1. #1
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    A + B does not necessarily = C

    I've seen this mantra repeated over and over by sportswriters:

    (A) The Rams are rebuilding; and

    (B) They are relying on a lot of young, untested, players; therefore

    (C) The Rams will continue to struggle for the next year or two.

    This analysis proves to me (not that it is a surprise) that sportswriters are not very knowledgeable in the fields of history or probability.

    Premise (A) is true. Premise (B) is likewise true. But that does not mean that conclusion (C) must necessarily follow. If it did, you would not have teams like last year's Dolphins or Falcons.

    So how do you predict how a team like the Rams will do? It is certainly difficult. I, for one, am not ready to make my prediction for 2009.

    For sportswriters, the easiest thing to do is to simply presume that the Rams will continue to struggle. However, to characterize that as a foregone conclusion is to ignore history and probability.


  2. #2
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    Re: A + B does not necessarily = C

    AV,

    I agree that A & B are true. C is a safe position for sportswriters who have been burned by betting on the Rams and finding themselves with egg on their faces. I think there will be a decent chance of the Rams outperforming the pundits.

    What irks me is the "draft grades" being handed out. I know they are a tenuous item at this point, but we definitely addressed our needs without reaching for any players and were fortuitous to get Laurinaitis in round 2 when he was projected as a top 10 pick 1 year ago. I'm sick of the Belicheck worshipping by these dumb writers because he makes so many moves and gets more picks.

    Go Rams!

  3. #3
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    Re: A + B does not necessarily = C

    Quote Originally Posted by Nibiru2012 View Post
    I don't understand how you say it is to ignore history and probability ??? Are you basing this strictly off the fact that the Dolphins and Falcons had good years last year, because that doesn't set the standard or make the odds in our favor to make the playoffs or have a winning record next year. Nor is it history or probability if anything it was a fluke.
    Sportswriters always take the safe route in there predictions, and saying the rams are a few years behind is a safe bet. They say having a bad draft is a 3 year set back, well we have had a few in a row during Linehans reign so going off that we need more then one good offseason to get back on track. It would be a safe comment to say we have been the worst drafting team in the league over the last 5 years. So how can you expect any sportswriter to say we're going to be good next year. It is very very rare for a team to have such a dramatic turn around over one season.
    Now i hope we are the next " falcons or dolphins " but i'm a die hard rams fan, not a sportswriter..
    Sportswriters write opinions, nothing more. Most people know no more about the game of football than myself, you, or many others who post here. Many sportswriters are assigned to a particular division or team, yet they still cannot get accurate information or make a logical assessment of how teams will fare ...

    The fact that sportswriters take the "safe" route is enough for me to discount anything they ever say. Any casual fan can look back at the past year and probably hit on 75% of the playoff teams for the upcoming season. A GREAT sportswriter will predict the sleepers that will make it ...

    Any Ram's fan simply needs to go back to 1999 to see how quickly things can turn around. The 1998 Rams were seemingly a very bad squad. The 1999 Rams were one of the best of all-tiime ...

    Look at the predicitions from the sportswriters. All they do is take the results from last year, and basically recycle them. Each year, there are two or three surprises, and two or threes duds, and they interchange these teams. Then, year after year, it is the same thing ...

    What most sportswriters and fans fail to realize is that there is often very little difference between a 6-10 and 10-6 team. Many, many, many games each year are decided by a touchdown or less. We could have easily won 6 games last year, the Lions could have won 5. Just the same, Atlanta could have been 6-10 ...

    Look what the sportswriters did with the Cards. For the past three years, they have been talking about how they were going to finally break out, then they did and the sportswriters said "I told you so". What kind of talent does that take? None ...

    I'm telling you right now that Houston will win 10 games this year, or maybe even more. I wonder how many sportswriters jump on the bandwagon. All you have to do is a little research to see that they are ready. I doubt those "professionals" have done the research because they will be stuck up the Colt's behind as usual, despite the fact that Houston might be a better team ...

    A bad draft sets a team back three years? Total BS. Drafts can put teams over the top, they can make teams deeper, they can make teams better. But other than a few teams who draft badly year in and year out, drafts don't seal your fate. There are too many other factors ....

    There is no reason we cannot be a contender this year. Parity runs rampant in the NFL, and other than a few dominant mainstays, it's wide open year after year. We have alot of young talent, and if it develops quickly, there is no reason we cannot compete, or even more ...

    To summarize, I could careless what the sportswriters say. Their gibberish is a waste of mine, and probably your, time ...
    Last edited by RamsInfiniti; -05-12-2009 at 03:21 PM.

  4. #4
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Re: A + B does not necessarily = C

    Quote Originally Posted by Nibiru2012 View Post
    I don't understand how you say it is to ignore history and probability ??? Are you basing this strictly off the fact that the Dolphins and Falcons had good years last year, because that doesn't set the standard or make the odds in our favor to make the playoffs or have a winning record next year. Nor is it history or probability if anything it was a fluke.
    From a history standpoint, there are teams every year that go from the sub-.500 records to 10 win seasons. That fact renders the simple A+B=C analysis incorrect, as it ignores the probability (no matter how slight) that the Rams might be a team that turns things around this year.

    Sportswriters always take the safe route in there predictions, and saying the rams are a few years behind is a safe bet.
    Which is why sportswriters and commentators are boring.

    They say having a bad draft is a 3 year set back
    Who are "they"?

    It would be a safe comment to say we have been the worst drafting team in the league over the last 5 years.
    Safe? Perhaps. Correct? No. There are others who have been as bad or worse (look at the Lions' drafts, if you'd like a good example).

  5. #5
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    Re: A + B does not necessarily = C

    All we need is one player,one player to make the pro bowl. If the happens most likely two other player will have big years and thus we will have a good year. Simple just one player can really make a difference, Jason Smith.

    If smith can do what Jake Long did last year, SJ and Marc will both have big years.

  6. #6
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    Re: A + B does not necessarily = C

    I don't think they're ignoring history and probablility, I think they're observing it. Rather than go to the effort of actually examining the Rams in depth, its easier to just use our own recent history and the general trend of 2-3 year franchise revival to bash out copy.

    One year revivals are possible but they're exceptional and its easier for journo's to play percentages.

  7. #7
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    Re: A + B does not necessarily = C

    I feel the need to comment one point. althoguh they downgarde thrams every year, had most of us not noticed that every year they have predicted the cardinals as the sleeper team that would be a contender? yes, i know, the cards went to the sb last year, but bfore that they had done nothing but they were always the sleeper team by a lot of analysts. im making this short as possible. but i believe the rams a downgrafed franchise that few veiw as a contendwe or sleeper. i care not about there predictions. i will always believe the rams will do good till otherwise proven......which has happened to many times recently.

    go rams.


  8. #8
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    Re: A + B does not necessarily = C

    Personally I think there is hidden agenda's that have little to do with football and all to do with marketing. Normally I am not a conspirency theory sort--but look at it this way:

    Look at the largest markets and special attention given to those teams. Texas, Mass, Calif, Florida, and Penn. All those teams with exeptions of a few, like the Raiders, are expected to do well and take their division. But somehow these experts miss a lot of facts.
    The Cowboys, have on paper good solid players--in 08 they where expected to make it to the NFC Championship or go deep into the playoffs. Despite all the predictions before hand, I knew Dallas would be lucky to score a wild card spot into the playoffs. These experts ignored 2 basic facts, Jerry Jones & Wade Phillips...the same problem they have this year. Wade phillips able to control and motivate all those me-first, disfunctional personalities?!-HA! And J. Jones running the team as defacto-HC ?! Throw in an unfocused Romo as QB--and we seen the results
    Picking either the Pats or Steelers is a no brainer. Two solidly run teams, the very opposite of the Cowboys where not a surprise to contend for the AFC. With Brady down the Pats still came close.
    San Diego, as a favorite in 08--HOW? Bearly two-diminsional team with predictable passing schemes. The hopes placed on the Charges was little more then wishful thinking.
    At least the Eagles where viable possibilites considering the disfunctional division of the Redskins, & Cowboys.

    Fact is I think the NFL and in association with sports writters and organizations market their predictions based on fan base. How many people would have been excited if they all knew the cardnals would be in the Superbowl--Ticket sales and merchandising sales would ahve been interesting.

  9. #9
    RamsInfiniti's Avatar
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    Re: A + B does not necessarily = C

    Quote Originally Posted by Nibiru2012 View Post
    " They " are the guys who you started this thread about sportswriters, along with commentors and nfl minds around the league. I never said that i agreed with these guys whatsoever, just laying down my interpetation of there reasoning behind there always " safe " predictions.
    But i do believe that bad drafts do set you back, especially for an already bad team, how many years depends on the moves the team makes to make up for it, or how deep your team already is.

    Infinity,
    I guess you havn't noticed but we are one of those teams who draft badly each year atleast for the last 4 years ( not counting this one ) So how do you think the draft isn't a set back, when you don't build depth and get better doesn't that mean your not improving? Why do you think we have won a total of 5 games in the last two years? Why do you think we have no depth? And whoever said they seal your fate? I said they were a set back which is true.
    And sure a 10-6 team could have been 6-10, sure a 6-10 team could have been 10-6, but we were not 6-10. And yes the Texans could be a 10-6 team anyone who watched them last year could easily see that they are on the cusp i mean they were 8-8 last year so 10-6 would be a safe assessment depending on there schedule the only reason they already haven't gotten over the hump IMO is there tough division. but we were 2-14 that maybe could have been 5-11, that is a total different story, sure plenty of some .500 teams go into the next season and win 10 games, but how many 2-14 teams do? Not too many......
    Do i think we can do it..... sure. But the road is going to be very tough, especially this years schedule. But the odd's are against us, and that is why those idiot writers write what they do, and that was my point.
    So then, according to you and the sportswriters, who say a bad draft sets you back at least three years (abour the dumbest assumption I've ever heard by the way) ...

    The draft in 2004 set us back at least three years ...

    So then the bad draft in 2005 set us back three more years on top of that ...

    The same with 2006 ...

    And 2007 ...

    So we are, at best, 9 years away from competing ...

    Should set up a nice run for 2018 or so ....

  10. #10
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    Re: A + B does not necessarily = C

    Not to be a downer, but I think they're just playing the odds. It's true that pretty much every year there are some surprises. A few years ago, one of Yahoo's sportswriters wrote that he'd eat his laptop if the Bears made it to the playoffs that year. Naturally, they went on to play the Colts in Super Bowl XLI.

    However, even we, the fans, were saying before the draft that there were probably too many holes for us to address them all adequately in one off-season. Looking at the current depth chart, there still are plenty of areas of concern. It seems to me that in order to predict big things for the Rams in 2009, you basically have to assume that our players are going to have improved over the off-season more than the players on other teams. Otherwise, you're banking on the idea that it was just a matter of securing a couple of key missing pieces that will change everything.

  11. #11
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Re: A + B does not necessarily = C

    Quote Originally Posted by Goldenfleece View Post
    Not to be a downer, but I think they're just playing the odds. It's true that pretty much every year there are some surprises. A few years ago, one of Yahoo's sportswriters wrote that he'd eat his laptop if the Bears made it to the playoffs that year. Naturally, they went on to play the Colts in Super Bowl XLI.
    No question that they are playing the odds. That's what makes them so uninteresting.

    However, even we, the fans, were saying before the draft that there were probably too many holes for us to address them all adequately in one off-season. Looking at the current depth chart, there still are plenty of areas of concern. It seems to me that in order to predict big things for the Rams in 2009, you basically have to assume that our players are going to have improved over the off-season more than the players on other teams. Otherwise, you're banking on the idea that it was just a matter of securing a couple of key missing pieces that will change everything.
    I don't agree with all that. A team does not have to fill every hole to be successful. Sometimes, if a team is good enough in one area, it will cover for other areas. For example, if a team is able to control the clock with a strong running game, that can cover up for defensive weaknesses. If a team forces a lot of turnovers, that can allow a mediocre offense to score more points. If a team is able to get to early leads, it can cover for a weak run defense, as other teams are forced to abandon the run and throw the ball.

    In the end, all teams have holes to an extent. Its about how well a team is able to play to its strengths.

    I think this Rams team has a chance this year because it made a significant effort to improve its run blocking by adding Brown, Smith, Karney and Bajema. If, as a result, Steven Jackson is able to have a big year, it will make life easier for a passing game that does not have established WRs, and a defense that still needs more run stoppers and pass rushers.

    Now.... wasn't that more interesting than "Well, the Rams have only won 5 games in the last two years so I guess they'll be bad again this year."

  12. #12
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    Re: A + B does not necessarily = C

    You're right that a team's strengths can sometimes offset weaknesses in other areas. However, when a team is coming off a year in which they ranked near the bottom in almost every category, it can be hard to tell where its strengths are even going to lie. For example, we hope that the offensive line will be a strength, even though it has not been one for us for most of the last decade. We hope Bulger will be as accurate as he was earlier in his career if he gets more time to throw, even though the last two seasons have been the worst of his career by far.

    I think we can be successful, but it's going to require a lot of guys to play better than they did last season. If I'm not mistaken, Witherspoon and Draft both played for Flajole in Carolina, which is good news. So between them and Laurinaitis, linebacker could turn out to be a strength if they all thrive in the positions they're at now. Under the tutelage of a coaching staff that has helped develop a number of top defensive linemen, our d-line could flourish...but again this is all speculative because it's largely contingent on players playing better than they did before (whether because of scheme or progress in individual skills). A young team is a team with lots of upside, but there's no way of knowing whether they will capitalize on that this year.

  13. #13
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    Question Re: A + B does not necessarily = C

    im just glad we havent gotta go through another "Dallas are the team to beat going into this year" even tho they havent won a play-off game in 13 years...off-season.

    the "experts" cant make a team win games by what they predict, however much they`d like... as has been proved by the Dallas case.

  14. #14
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    Re: A + B does not necessarily = C

    Obviously no one walking the earth knows how the Rams or any other team will do this year. All of this is pure speculation, educated and in some cases, uneducated guesses. In other words, anybody weighing in on the subject has about as much of a chance at being right as the next man.

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