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Bartell records first INT of season
By Jim Thomas
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
Monday, Dec. 08 2008
GLENDALE, Ariz. Rams cornerback Ron Bartell already has established a career
high for pass breakups this season, adding three to his total (now at 16)
Sunday against Arizona. But he finally got his first interception of the year
late in the first quarter, picking off a Kurt Warner pass intended for Anquan
Bartell returned the INT 24 yards to the Arizona 6; he appeared headed for a
touchdown until being tripped up by Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald.
"It would've been real big if we could've scored a defensive touchdown,"
Bartell said. "But we gave our offense a chance, and I think we did end up
Yes, they did. Three plays later, Marc Bulger completed a 3-yard TD pass to
Steven Jackson. It was the Rams' first touchdown in 150 offensive plays, dating
back to a Nov. 16 loss at San Francisco.
On Bartell's play, the Rams were in a Cover 2 shell, with Bartell having
underneath coverage responsibilities.
"I saw Warner get flushed out of the pocket and I just read his eyes and got a
good break on the ball," Bartell said.
After missing four weeks with a broken foot, Chris Draft returned to action
Sunday, starting at middle linebacker for the first time in his two seasons
with the Rams.
"Somebody rolled up on it a little bit in the first quarter and it was fine,"
Draft said. "So I was like, 'All right, that means it's OK.'"
Draft was used strictly when Arizona's offense had two backs in the game; Will
Witherspoon was used the rest of the time. The Rams had one of their best games
of the season on run defense, limiting Arizona to 63 yards on 22 carries.
LITTLE TWEAKS LEG
Because of a torn right hamstring, defensive end Leonard Little has been
limited mainly to duty in passing situations over the second half of the
season. He was active in that role Sunday, with two tackles for loss, three
quarterback hurries and his first sack in seven games.
But Little paid a price for that sack, aggravating the right leg on the play
late in the third quarter.
"I just cramped up a little bit," Little said. "It probably got a little
fatigued, but it's something I've got to deal with for the rest of the year."
BIG DAY FOR HAYES
In a 34-13 loss to Arizona five weeks ago, guard Richie Incognito said Rams
blockers had trouble getting out on Cardinals linebackers. It was more of the
same Sunday, particularly when it came to Big Red middle linebacker Gerald
Hayes. Hayes was practically unblockable Sunday, forcing two fumbles, recording
half a sack and registering 11 tackles, according to press box stats.
SITTING IT OUT
Rams pregame inactives were offensive tackle Anthony Davis, cornerback Tye
Hill, linebacker Larry Grant, running back Travis Minor, defensive end Eric
Moore, offensive guard Roy Schuening and center Cory Withrow. It was the first
time Minor has been a healthy scratch in two seasons with the Rams.
The Rams have lost five in a row against Arizona. Warner finished the day
with 347 completions for the season, surpassing the franchise record (345) set
by Neil Lomax in 1984. With five catches Sunday, Torry Holt has 855 in his
career, moving ahead of Irving Fryar (851) for 12th place on the NFL's
receptions list. Tight end Joe Klopfenstein has only nine catches over the
last two seasons; three of them have come at University of Phoenix Stadium,
including two Sunday.
Re: Bartell records first INT of season
That was a good pick by Bartell, Warner tried to force that ball in, but he was in the right spot to pick it off.
Glad Little has been starting to come around, hopefully that leg injury wasn't too bad and he'll be able to keep working in.
Congrats to Torry for continuing to move up in the all time WR rankings!
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