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Thread: Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

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    Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

    Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

    By Justin Koski
    July 10, 2014 8:51 am CDT

    Trenches: A+

    The Rams heart and soul. The front four of the Rams is by far its most fearsome unit and should take another step forward toward dominance with the addition of rookie Aaron Donald. The Rams were able to rack up 53 sacks last year with superstar Robert Quinn leading the way with 19. I see big things for this group in 2014, and with Gregg Williams holding the playsheet, itís not unreasonable to assume this group easily tallies more than 50 sacks on their own. They had 46 last year.

    Linebackers: B+

    A weak spot in previous years, the linebacker corps has turned into a solid core with Laurinaitis holding down and making calls in the middle, the second year athletic freak Ogletree roaming the sidelines, and a combination of Jo-Lonn Dunbar (reuniting with Gregg Williams) and Ray-Ray Armstrong, who was a special teams standout last year. Under Williamsí tutelage, this group has the potential to cause more havoc as Williams likes to generate pressure from all angles using different stunts. Expect to see this linebacker core to be in the backfield more often and playing more aggressively this year instead of the shell coverage and lack of blitzing seen last year.

    Defensive Backs: B

    This group should see the biggest step forward this year for a few reasons. First and foremost, the presence of Gregg Williams cannot be overlooked for this entire defense. His football acumen and creativity should light a fire under these guys. Now that Tim Walton is no longer going to allow the backs to give a 10-yard cushion to the receivers, this group should do much better. T.J. McDonald enters his second season and should excel in Williamsí defense. He fits a Roman Harper-esque type roll and could cause 10 turnovers this year. With Finnegan leaving, Lamarcus Joyner should step in and instantly take over as the nickelback. With Trumaine Johnson and Janoris Jenkins manning the corners, these DBís should hold their own this year. Like the linebackers, expect to see this group in the backfield more often as Williams loves to dial up blitzes with his safeties and corners.

    The overall turnaround this defense has made in the last three years under Coach Fisher ought to be applauded. But, now is the time to prove it. This year is a big year for the Rams, and it should be the most exciting in the Fisher era. Expect big things on this side of the ball from the Rams.


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    Re: Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

    A+, B+ and B...not to shabby...hopefully the defense plays as well as the grades given.

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    Re: Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

    Quote Originally Posted by laram0 View Post
    A+, B+ and B...not to shabby...hopefully the defense plays as well as the grades given.
    Yep, if we can live up to the B grade for the secondary, we'll dominate. Still a big if IMO, but I'm hopeful the Williams effect will make the difference.

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    Re: Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

    Just checked out Justin Koski. He's wearing a blue and gold throwback hat. Can't see a logo, but.....

    Hope he's right, but I'd say A-, B-, C. Definitely reason for optimism tho -
    "the Heart Lies and the Head Plays Tricks with us, but the Eyes See True".

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    Re: Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

    Be interesting to see his grades for Seattle and SF, just for benchmark purposes.

    Go Rams!

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    Re: Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

    Quote Originally Posted by mde8352gorams View Post
    Be interesting to see his grades for Seattle and SF, just for benchmark purposes.

    Go Rams!
    I am sure they would be higher - the Rams get no respect. We're the Rodney Dangerfield of the NFL.

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    Re: Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

    That secondary grade seems pretty optimistic. Hope they end up living up to it.
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    Re: Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

    Quote Originally Posted by RamsFanSam View Post
    I am sure they would be higher - the Rams get no respect. We're the Rodney Dangerfield of the NFL.
    Respect must be earned...... And I feel this year our D will earn alot of it!

    Go Rams!
    mde8352gorams likes this.

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    Re: Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

    Quote Originally Posted by RamsFanSam View Post
    I am sure they would be higher - the Rams get no respect. We're the Rodney Dangerfield of the NFL.
    I am sure you're right. As I said it just interests me to view his ratings for those teams as we know they're better than us based on 2013. That will give us some context to the grades we received. I expect we'll improve this year, but I like being the Rodney Dangerfield as it puts a chip on our guys shoulders and keeps us below the radar at least for a few games.

    Go Rams!

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    Re: Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

    Talent wise A+ front; A- middle; B-/C+ at the back end....how the defense was used in 2013, C+ overall

    I am expecting with the Rams new DC, G. Williams I expect A+ front; A Middle; A- at the back end...scheme wise A- in how the players are used.

    The reason for the upgrade is that Williams and Fisher will carefully evaluate the existing talent and put them into positions that makes the most of their talent. Simply that to be an elite and sought after coordinator you have to have an eye for talent and know what you can do with it

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    Re: Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

    Finally we have a competent and proven DC to go along with all this talent. I'm thinking it's going to pay huge performance dividends. Walton was absolutely awful and he set the tone in preseason with his infamous Vanilla D.
    HUbison and Randart like this.

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    Re: Grade Day: Rams Defense From The Trenches To The Backend

    Quote Originally Posted by Curly Horns View Post
    Finally we have a competent and proven DC to go along with all this talent. I'm thinking it's going to pay huge performance dividends. Walton was absolutely awful and he set the tone in preseason with his infamous Vanilla D.
    All last preseason we all where disappointed with Vanilla and most where calling it out...there where a few who where saying oh the Rams are hiding their best as a surprise, just wait and see. We waited and we didn't see much save for a few great games.

    Question would it have been better for the Rams to show the door to Walton midseason or where they right to wait till end of the season?

    There is yet another coordinator that many of us fans have our doubts about. Should it prove Schotty isn't getting the job done, do the Rams wait as they did with Walton and give him the axe end of season, or when its apparent the offense isn't up to scratch
    Last edited by Ram Dragoon; -07-20-2014 at 12:36 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ram Dragoon View Post
    Question would it have been better for the Rams to show the door to Walton midseason or where they right to wait till end of the season?

    There is yet another coordinator that many of us fans have our doubts about. Should it prove Schotty isn't getting the job done, do the Rams wait as they did with Walton and give him the axe end of season, or when its apparent the offense isn't up to scratch
    Emotionally you just want the guy gone immediately. I know it's a bitter pill, but I think the best option is to wait until the season is over. I just don't recall many mid season changes, over the years, that proved to be highly successful.

    I still feel that the biggest problems with the offense are consistent performance along the offensive line and young talent at the skill positions. Improved consistency and continuity with the line and ongoing development of the young players should yield a higher level of success.

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