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Thread: Bulger needs to snap out of it
Bulger needs to snap out of it
By Jeff Gordon
STLTODAY.COM SPORTS COLUMNIST
Wednesday, Oct. 01 2008
Marc Bulger is back at the helm of the Rams offense after a one-week absence.
Interim coach Jim Haslett ordered him to put down his clipboard and pick up the
football. But can Haslett convince Bulger to set aside his frustrations as well?
If Bulger doesn’t snap out of his funk, this switch won’t do the Rams any good.
We all know that Bulger and former coach Scott Linehan were at odds. Bulger
never got excited about Linehan’s offense. Their relationship soured.
“It was just a lot of situations,” Bulger told reporters during his Tuesday
afternoon media grab. “When you’re not winning there’s going to be strains on
any relationship, but I think we spent a lot of time this offseason together
and just trying to find ways to win.”
The arrival of Al Saunders -– and the installation of the new offense -- didn’t
really change things much. Bulger has been a less-than-dynamic offensive
presence since the start of training camp.
He flashed his old Pro Bowl-caliber skills during one preseason game and during
the third quarter of the real game at Seattle. Otherwise, Bulger has been a
shell of his former self.
The physical beatings he took during the first two weeks of this season left
him with Battered Quarterback Syndrome. Too often, he threw off his back foot.
Too often, he threw late, left throws short or sailed them well over the head
of his intended target.
Trent Green started in his place Sunday at the Edward Jones Dome and led the
Rams to their 31-14 loss. Bulger stayed off to the side, avoiding Linehan’s
discussions with Green.
Bulger also warmed up on his own, as if to defy his benching.
“I know I was throwing a lot,” he said. “I don’t know if it is my body type but
I get tight pretty quick so I kept the rock close to me and keep myself loose.
I just wanted to be ready. I did not realize I had it the whole game.”
Earlier, Marc reportedly told people he couldn't and wouldn’t play for Linehan
again. But he never discussed those feelings with the St. Louis media last week.
“I was definitely upset about the decision but it was the head coach’s decision
and I lived with it,” Bulger said. “I think me speaking on it would not have
done anything. I did not want to be a distraction to the team. That is not who
I am and coach Linehan knew that I would be ready.”
This added one more controversy to a rough final week for Linehan. Now that era
is over and the Rams are trying to chart a new course for the final 12 weeks of
Will Bulger snap out of it and move the Rams up and down the field?
Running back Steven Jackson is ready to rumble. He proved that against the
Bills by piling up 188 yards from scrimmage.
Rookie receiver Donnie Avery gives the offense a badly needed spark. He is
strides faster than anybody else this team has.
Torry Holt is still here. The desperate Linehan apparently wanted to jettison
him . . . but Scott got the short haircut instead. Now Torry should turn the
page and play like a Pro Bowler again.
We’re not sure Joe Klopfenstein is ready to fill in for tight end Randy
McMichael the rest of this season, but the kid does have receiving skills.
The offensive line did solid work against the Bills on Sunday, providing hope
of good things to come this season.
But all of this won’t matter unless Bulger pulls himself together and plays
like he did back in the day. He sounds ready for the challenge, anyway.
“I think Al (Saunders) can be a lot more aggressive now,” Bulger said. “A major
point is to protect the quarterback early in the year, but it limits other
things. When you’re 0-4 . . . we have to lay it on the table now. It’s not
about protecting one guy . . . you have to throw it out the window and go for
-10-02-2008 #3Mooselini Guest
Re: Bulger needs to snap out of it
I know Haslett will be able to pull Bulger together. Unlike Linehan, Haslett isn't afraid to get in the player's faces. When Linehan tried, they either yelled back or rolled their eyes at him.
I think Haslett will clarify with Bulger that the line isn't too bad. Even the best teams have their QB's sacked every once in a while. If he takes the hit, dust it off and play the next down.
-10-02-2008 #4Rampingitup Guest
Re: Bulger needs to snap out of itI think Haslett will clarify with Bulger that the line isn't too bad. Even the best teams have their QB's sacked every once in a while. If he takes the hit, dust it off and play the next down.
Has the O line played better? Yes. Finally. But to a certain extent, damage done. Once bitten twice shy. When you already have battered QB syndrome it can take a while to recover. I hope, along with a lot of other people, that he recovers quick. But I have had it with Bulger bashing.
SJ has gotten back on track. That will take some pressure off Bulger to "Make" thing happen and just play.
Holt needs to b e more involved, but his issue has been more about getting double teamed since we had no other receiving threats and were running too many 2 reciever sets. Now that Avery is working as the #2 and getting more work, and we may be seeing more 3 and 4 receiver sets, Tory will get open more and again, take pressure off Bulger.
Finally we need the Tight Ends to, #1 learn how to block! #2 actually catch the damn ball when it is thrown to them!
Offensively we have sucked, but the offense is not a one man show. Until last week SJ has not been producing, but he also did not get the ball enough. That was the HC and OC's fault. We had too many 2 receiver sets without a good #2 so that Holt was taken out. That was the HC and OC's fault. The O line was not protecting the QB. That was a collective issue of not enough talent and not enough effort. And yes finally a rattled QB trying too hard to make things happend and getting happy feet.
So now we have the O line starting to actually do its job. Sj seems to have gotten back on track. Avery may be able to help take some pressure off of Holt. The TE's? Well I guess we'll have to wait and see. So far Klop looks like a flop. And now Randy is out with an injury. I do not know if there are any TEs still available in free agency that are worth anything. But maybe a veteran with good skills might be able to help shake some sense into Klop.
My prediction is that Bulger will recover. But given what we have waiting in the background to replace him we will be in a WORLD of hurt if he can't. Green is not the answer, long or short term. Neither is Berlin.
Re: Bulger needs to snap out of it
This can't be, as RamsInfiniti informed all of us that Bulger is just fine.
-10-02-2008 #6rams2061 Guest
Re: Bulger needs to snap out of it
I have a feeling the Rams are going to pull a Warner on Bulger - he's going to get traded.
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