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Thread: Bernie: Rams Have Exciting Toys To Unwrap

  1. #1
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    Bernie: Rams Have Exciting Toys To Unwrap

    Bernie: Rams have exciting toys to unwrap

    20 hours ago • BY BERNIE MIKLASZ

    The Rams open the regular season next Sunday, and I can’t wait to see what they’ll roll out. They have so many new toys on offense. All kinds of gadgets for quarterback Sam Bradford to play with. It should be bright and shiny.

    Going into the Edward Jones Dome for the game against Arizona will be like rushing downstairs on Christmas morning to see what’s under the tree.

    Remember how it was as a kid? Your presents were there, just waiting to be revealed, but you weren’t quite sure what to expect. You didn’t know what they’d look like. You didn’t quite know if you’d get what you wanted. You didn’t know if the batteries were included.

    Or think of this as one of those old electric football games. You’d plug it in, and the field would begin to vibrate. You’d align the players and hope that they wouldn’t run around in circles.

    The Rams — with so many talented but extremely inexperienced wide receivers and running backs — may take a while to find a full-speed tempo.

    Like those little electric football players, they may occasionally run backwards, aimlessly wander out of bounds, or inexplicably collide with teammates.

    Coach Jeff Fisher wisely kept most of the toys under wraps during four intentionally boring preseason games. He didn’t give us much of a peek of an evolved passing game, and kept his super-action blitz packages tucked away for regular-season safekeeping.

    I like that. Fisher’s secrecy only raised the anticipation, increased the build-up, and added more suspense as Rams fans gear up for the 2013 debut.

    After going 15-65 over five seasons of futility and hopelessness that ended in 2011, the Rams hired Fisher and GM Les Snead to revive then reinvent the franchise.

    The project is going well. The Rams went 7-8-1 in Fisher’s first season, then ambitiously added offensive tackle Jake Long, wide receiver Tavon Austin, hybrid tight end Jared Cook and other potential difference-makers during the offseason.

    These new pieces joined a maturing group that formed the NFL’s youngest squad in 2012. But the roster churn has continued, topped by the free-agent departure of veteran running back Steven Jackson.

    The Rams may have as many as six new starters on offense and four new starters on defense. After Saturday’s roster cutdown to 53, the Rams had 29 first-year or second-year players.

    (Rams Park? More like Rams Day Care.)

    What are the Rams planning to do with all of these playthings, appliances, gismos, novelties and contraptions?

    We’ll begin to find out next week. It’s nearly showtime.

    “I’ve never been more jacked about being a part of something the way I am with this,” Snead said Saturday. “We’re ahead of where I thought we would be (in rebuilding.) And I would say that we’re getting to the point, with starting-caliber players, where we can match up with anybody.”

    There’s no debate; the Rams have upgraded their athleticism, speed, and overall talent on offense. But they’ve freshened the defense, too. (Hello, Alec Ogletree.) Plodders and pedestrians have been phased out, replaced by playmakers and ballers.

    Still, I keep thinking about how frustrating and baffling the old electric football game could be. I’m wondering if the Rams can avoid wandering in the wrong direction. At times there will be more buzz than substance.

    Their talent on offense is largely unbridled. And as the new generation receives an education on the fly, we’re in for some confusion, chaos and mistakes.

    The Rams have an exciting product to showcase.

    But it isn’t a finished product.

    “Sometimes I take the telescopic view, not the microscopic view,” Snead said. “Hey, I’m competitive. You want to beat Arizona, you want to win every game. But there’s no script to this.

    “I do know that somewhere along the line this year, we’re going to get in the groove. And I do know that this organization believes that 2013, ‘14, ‘15, ‘16, ‘17 are looking really good.

    “And I know this: I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.”

    This just isn’t about young men adjusting to the NFL. It’s also about players learning about each other — on the field and away from football. Many of the 2013 Rams haven’t been teammates for very long.

    These Rams have been thrown together ... and now will grow together. So cohesion will be an ongoing factor with this offense. It’s ludicrous to expect a smooth, fully-functioning machine right away.

    Not when over 50 percent of this squad has spent more time in college football than the NFL.

    Then again, I don’t want to put limitations on this fun bunch — and certainly not a speed limit.

    What is a reasonable level of tolerance and patience during the trial-and-error phase of an inexperienced offense?

    “Young players are going to be confronted by the kind of defensive coverages they’ve never seen before,” Snead said. “Because in college it’s not as complicated. But here’s what I think: you can get there relatively quickly. The more success you have early, the more you’re going to get in a rhythm and roll.”

    Snead believes fourth-year quarterback Sam Bradford — a salty veteran in comparison to most of his offensive mates — will expedite the process.

    “The great thing is, continuity from the QB,” Snead said. “He’s not learning the offense himself. He’s teaching it to the younger players.

    “But when you get young players going through this, it’s like anything in life. When you see something you don’t expect to see for the first time, you’re going to slam on the brakes and think, ‘What just happened.’ And then you come to understand it. And you get back up to speed. You’ve got to go through it. Not just game by game — but play to play. Just keep getting better.”

    We’re almost ready to see the new toys under the dome. I just hope they’ll be exactly what the Rams and their fans wanted. But sometimes you just have to wait until next Christmas.
    live4ramin likes this.


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    Re: Bernie: Rams Have Exciting Toys To Unwrap

    I have to admit, this opening day is as exciting as any I can remember. ...but I can see it going one of two ways...

    I can see a team that is young, immature, and at times, lost. This team can come out and make too many mistakes to overcome, and it could be a very disappointing Sunday and a slow start to the season.

    I can see the other side as well...

    I wouldn't be totally surprised to see Bradford throwing darts to all his new, young, and speedy talent and the Rams manhandling the Cards. This of course is the scenario I hope to see, but in my opinion, it will be very important for the Rams defense to set the tone in this game. I want to see pressure. Lots of it. I want turnovers too. This defense can provide these things. And I think a Rams victory will come not from all the new toys on offense, but from what has become the Rams strength, and that is the defensive front four.

    But this defense will also give up big plays at times because of the youth and inexperience. Let's hope that our LB and safeties step it up and shut down the Cards, allowing a great pass-rush from the front four. If the Rams have to bring in the blitz to get to Palmer, it could be a long day in the dome.

    But as far as the "new toys" on offense go, it will probably be deep into the season before they jell. Let's hope the new toys on defense hold down the fort until then...
    RealRam and macrammer like this.
    Faithful Rams fan since 1968

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    Re: Bernie: Rams Have Exciting Toys To Unwrap

    I just hope those toys have batteries included! I hated that as a kid, having to wait to rush to the store and get batteries...sometimes I think my parents did that deliberately. However I'd have liked to seen a little more in preseason of what those toys can do...kind a like when I got my first chemistry set I want to know what "fun" you could have with it..............
    Last edited by Ram Dragoon; -09-03-2013 at 12:18 AM.

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    Re: Bernie: Rams Have Exciting Toys To Unwrap

    IMO, attitude and confidence will set the tone for the "new toys". If they execute, and keep the turnovers, drops, and mistakes to a minimum, look out.
    RealRam likes this.

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    Re: Bernie: Rams Have Exciting Toys To Unwrap

    Lets keep THIS article by Bernie to one side and after our first loss, lets read his following article then compair to what he has written here

    Should be fun to see how he will contradict himself


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    Re: Bernie: Rams Have Exciting Toys To Unwrap

    Lookout Arizona the Vanilla is back on the shelf and here comes the Chocolate and a variety of flavors!

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    Re: Bernie: Rams Have Exciting Toys To Unwrap

    I expect that we'll see some typical issues we've seen over the years when receivers and quarterbacks don't see the same thing. When they run straight plays called in the huddle, things will go off well. When they run the no-huddle and are using hand signals and are calling plays with option routes, things will go a bit liss smoothly. What I hope we don't see too much of, but expect that we will to start the season, is when a certain coverage is supposed to dictate a route change, and Sam sees a different coverage than one of our young receivers, the ball will go one place while the receiver is going the other.

    The question is, which will prevail? Will drives get stalled because of these little mental/experience issues, or will the raw athleticism, eagerness, and surprise factor be able to put up the points? If there's a weak point to our defense, it's our dime package as our secondary will be extremely tested. Thank goodness that we have an elite pass rush. I almost hope that we keep tight leads if only to allow our opponents to stay balanced and keep our secondary from getting too stressed/tired. I won't mind playing a ton of cover 2 to protect a 14 point lead though.
    I believe!

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    Re: Bernie: Rams Have Exciting Toys To Unwrap

    Quote Originally Posted by TekeRam View Post
    I expect that we'll see some typical issues we've seen over the years when receivers and quarterbacks don't see the same thing. When they run straight plays called in the huddle, things will go off well. When they run the no-huddle and are using hand signals and are calling plays with option routes, things will go a bit less smoothly. What I hope we don't see too much of, but expect that we will to start the season, is when a certain coverage is supposed to dictate a route change, and Sam sees a different coverage than one of our young receivers, the ball will go one place while the receiver is going the other.

    The question is, which will prevail? Will drives get stalled because of these little mental/experience issues, or will the raw athleticism, eagerness, and surprise factor be able to put up the points? here's a weak point to our defense, it's our dime package as our secondary will be extremely tested.
    Sure there will be mistakes and some drives stalled, but we now have the weaponry to come back from them and put points on the board - more so now than in a long, long time. Same goes for the young secondary. We may get toasted on occasion, but we also have the talent to reverse those mistakes with a pick six now and then. We'll see soon enough.

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