Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 24
Like Tree5Likes

Thread: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams.

  1. #1
    AvengerRam's Avatar
    AvengerRam is online now Moderator Emeritus
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Longwood, Florida, United States
    Age
    46
    Posts
    18,823
    Rep Power
    168

    I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams.

    As hard as it to believe, I have no idea who will start on the OL for the Rams in 2014. Here's the breakdown:

    Left Tackle: If Jake Long can recover rapidly from his knee injury, he could resume his starting role. My guess, though, is that he may be gone until the middle of the season, and might not be able to jump right back in as Sam Bradford's blindside bodyguard. Rodger Saffold is an option, I suppose, but he's a free agent. Then there's the possibility of a rookie, such as Jake Matthews.

    Left Guard: The two players who manned this spot most of the year, Chris Williams and Shelly Smith, are both free agents. Of the two, I'd prefer to see Williams return, but he's hardly indispensible. Could Barrett Jones be ready to jump into the mix, or is a rookie (i.e. Gabe Jackson) more likely?

    Center: Scott Wells is a possible cap-casualty, and his replacement, Tim Barnes, did not look like a long-term answer at center. Jones is a possibilty, and the Rams could look to the draft (i.e. Bryan Stork). I'd love the Rams to use their FA money to try to lure Alex Mack, but that seems to be a longshot.

    Right Guard: Harvey Dahl is another likely cap-casualty. If his replacement, Saffold, is willing to sign on as the long-term starter at RG, I'd be thrilled. It seems likely, though, that this would not be his "Plan A," as he might find a team willing to pay him (and play him) as an OT. Jones again could be in the mix, and the draft is again an option.

    Right Tackle: Joe Barksdale is the "rock" of the current O line. He finished the year healthy, active and signed through 2014. Perhaps he will be deemed "good enough" to be the long-term solution at RT. I wouldn't bet my house on it, though. Not when the Rams have three top 50 selections in an OT-rich draft.

    Just for the fun of it, I'll go ahead and project an opening day OL:

    LT: Jake Matthews
    LG: Chris Williams
    C: Barrett Jones
    RG: Rodger Saffold
    RT: Joe Barksdale

    Now ask me how much confidence I have in this projection.
    Last edited by AvengerRam; -01-02-2014 at 04:16 PM.
    Randart likes this.


  2. #2
    Randart's Avatar
    Randart is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    California
    Posts
    590
    Rep Power
    8

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    That would be a very nice line to have, hope we have one as good as that one projects to be. Kinda sad to think we have such an unpredictable situation there. The line was playing well by the middle of the season with Roger at guard and Barks at RT. Seemed like we might really have something there, helped getting our blockers back from injury also, ( Kendricks & Harkey ). We have some basis for hope there, going to be a fun offseason for this team to be sure!

  3. #3
    Rambos's Avatar
    Rambos is online now Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Cali
    Age
    50
    Posts
    9,329
    Rep Power
    75

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    How much confidence do you have in this projection?

    Here's my guess

    LT: Jake Matthews
    LG: Chris Williams
    C: Scott Wells
    RG: Barrett Jones
    RT: Joe Barksdale

  4. #4
    mde8352gorams's Avatar
    mde8352gorams is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    San Francisco Bay Area
    Age
    62
    Posts
    1,752
    Rep Power
    22

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    I learned in a Ramblin' Fan article today that Tim Barnes is a Free Agent this year, adding to the uncertainty. I thought he handled the center duties quite well after Wells' injury. Although we all (on this site) tend to agree the O-Line needs serious rehab, cap issues may hinder the process. I mentioned in another thread that I recall reading that the Rams could be saving as much as $4 million of Jake Long's salary due to him not finishing the season on the roster, but rather on IR. I hope that is correct.

    Go Rams!
    Randart likes this.

  5. #5
    Flippin' Ram's Avatar
    Flippin' Ram is online now Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Long Beach, CA
    Posts
    2,483
    Rep Power
    32

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    Quote Originally Posted by mde8352gorams View Post
    I learned in a Ramblin' Fan article today that Tim Barnes is a Free Agent this year, adding to the uncertainty. I thought he handled the center duties quite well after Wells' injury. Although we all (on this site) tend to agree the O-Line needs serious rehab, cap issues may hinder the process. I mentioned in another thread that I recall reading that the Rams could be saving as much as $4 million of Jake Long's salary due to him not finishing the season on the roster, but rather on IR. I hope that is correct.

    Go Rams!
    We'll probably end up getting a late round or UDFA center for depth. Let's hope he's reliable at protection in the event that Barrett Jones goes down. I hope he'll be in NFL shape by the time the 2014 season kicks in.
    Randart likes this.

    ♪ R.I.P. Nujabes ♫
    Your beat still laments the world

  6. #6
    RAMFANRAIDERHATER's Avatar
    RAMFANRAIDERHATER is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Surf City USA
    Age
    61
    Posts
    2,346
    Rep Power
    58

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    ...and this my friends, is why the Rams will continue to be playing for third place in the NFC west. Until they get a solid line, with depth, AND play together for more than a few games, they have little chance of "closing the gap" with the other NFC foes. This song and dance is getting a little old. The Rams must hit a home run in the draft and hope, yes hope, that Long can beat the odds and get back in time for 2014. Let's see.... a weak O line, and a slowed and vulnerable Bradford coming off major knee surgery. Fisher and Snead will need to earn their pay this off season or another sub .500 season is on it's way.
    Fargo Ram Fan and Haste like this.
    Faithful Rams fan since 1968

  7. #7
    Azul e Oro is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    CALIFORNIA
    Posts
    2,397
    Rep Power
    72

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    I hope Saffold gets paid; too useful a swing man. Barnes seemed solid at center, if a little less physical than is ideal. Wasn't there some observation about the Hags game that indicated almost all the QB pressures came through the guards, Smith & Williams?
    Wouldn't mind if either was let go but I guess Williams has the better pedigree & can play tackle in a pinch.
    My guess for opening day would be Saffold at LT while Long rehabs, Williams LG, Barnes C,Jones RG until Saffold moves back when big Jake is ready, & Barksdale RT.

    Maybe they draft someone high at tackle or guard but that defensive backfield needs a lot of new blood,imo, & it seems Snisher like to throw multiple new bodies, drafted or FA, at any given unit to get it fixed ASAP & I'd guess they'd go there before OL. Probably depends on how RS' agent plays the negotiation with Demoff.

  8. #8
    RealRam's Avatar
    RealRam is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Mexico
    Posts
    8,456
    Rep Power
    68

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    Quote Originally Posted by RAMFANRAIDERHATER View Post
    ...and this my friends, is why the Rams will continue to be playing for third place in the NFC west. Until they get a solid line, with depth, AND play together for more than a few games, they have little chance of "closing the gap" with the other NFC foes. This song and dance is getting a little old. The Rams must hit a home run in the draft and hope, yes hope, that Long can beat the odds and get back in time for 2014. Let's see.... a weak O line, and a slowed and vulnerable Bradford coming off major knee surgery. Fisher and Snead will need to earn their pay this off season or another sub .500 season is on it's way.
    Well ... yikes.





    Our Rams OL Department certainly has a LOT of research, study and WORK to do! Or else...

    But I too would like to see that tentative plan, early as it is, happen:

    LT: Jake Matthews
    LG: Chris Williams
    C: Barrett Jones
    RG: Rodger Saffold
    RT: Joe Barksdale / Rodger Saffold

    - -



    -

    Then comes the other challenge -- depth.

  9. #9
    chiguy's Avatar
    chiguy is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Illinois
    Age
    42
    Posts
    1,177
    Rep Power
    23

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    An important question to which we don't have an answer: does Saffold still see himself as a LT or is he willing to be a guard? If he's willing to be a guard, things look much better. If he wants to be a tackle, then we're in rebuild mode.

  10. #10
    Rambos's Avatar
    Rambos is online now Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Cali
    Age
    50
    Posts
    9,329
    Rep Power
    75

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    Quote Originally Posted by chiguy View Post
    An important question to which we don't have an answer: does Saffold still see himself as a LT or is he willing to be a guard? If he's willing to be a guard, things look much better. If he wants to be a tackle, then we're in rebuild mode.
    Sounds like he just wants to get paid.

    “We think Rodger can play four different line positions at an exceptionally high level, as he proved this year,” said Alan Herman, Saffold’s agent. “He was absolutely dominating whenever he played guard. I think this puts him in an attractive situation as far as free agency.”


    “We look forward to exploring the market, and finding a spot where Rodger can contribute on a regular basis, play a specific position, and work to become an all-Pro player at that position,” Herman said.
    Last edited by Rambos; -01-03-2014 at 04:02 PM.

  11. #11
    AvengerRam's Avatar
    AvengerRam is online now Moderator Emeritus
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Longwood, Florida, United States
    Age
    46
    Posts
    18,823
    Rep Power
    168

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    Those comments seem to indicate that Saffold will only consider signing as a long-term OG after exhausting his efforts to get a contract as a starting OT.

  12. #12
    Goldenfleece's Avatar
    Goldenfleece is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Washington, DC
    Age
    32
    Posts
    3,586
    Rep Power
    60

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    The OT situation is the one that I find most intriguing. Ideally, having Matthews, Long, Barksdale, and Saffold on the roster would be great (with Saffold presumably slated long-term as RG). Does that mean that it would be Long, rather than Saffold, who would then be our magnum utility man when he returns?

    I get the impression that the difference in pay between guards and offensive tackles isn't that big these days. If we're willing to pay him like an elite player at either position, I'd imagine he'd stay. That is the big question, though, right? Are we willing to shell out say $8 mil/year to have Saffold play guard.

  13. #13
    Fortuninerhater's Avatar
    Fortuninerhater is online now Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    L.A., Ca.
    Posts
    2,670
    Rep Power
    37

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    Quote Originally Posted by Goldenfleece View Post
    The OT situation is the one that I find most intriguing. Ideally, having Matthews, Long, Barksdale, and Saffold on the roster would be great (with Saffold presumably slated long-term as RG). Does that mean that it would be Long, rather than Saffold, who would then be our magnum utility man when he returns?

    I get the impression that the difference in pay between guards and offensive tackles isn't that big these days. If we're willing to pay him like an elite player at either position, I'd imagine he'd stay. That is the big question, though, right? Are we willing to shell out say $8 mil/year to have Saffold play guard.
    If Fisher feels he can be an All Pro at guard (and he's on the record having said as much), i don't see why they wouldn't pay him as such. There's no denying he looked invigorated at RG.

    I say cut Dahl and Wells and pay Saffold. Let Barnes and Barrett Jones compete at Center. Resign Chris Williams. Draft a LT by the 3rd round, to groom in the event Long needs more time than anticipated, (doesn't have to be Jake Mathews).

    I'm of the belief that good Offensive lines are made by having continuity and solid schemes just as much as they are having a line full of high draft picks, and I have the GSOT to prove it.

  14. #14
    HUbison's Avatar
    HUbison is offline Superbowl MVP
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Kentucky
    Age
    40
    Posts
    13,642
    Rep Power
    145

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    I'm of the belief that good Offensive lines are made by having continuity and solid schemes just as much as they are having a line full of high draft picks, and I have the GSOT to prove it.
    The GSOT o-line didn't have a high draft pick on it?
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

  15. #15
    Richbert88's Avatar
    Richbert88 is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Northern California
    Age
    47
    Posts
    1,243
    Rep Power
    34

    Re: I cannot, with certainty, name a single 2014 opening day starting OL for the Rams

    Quote Originally Posted by Goldenfleece View Post
    The OT situation is the one that I find most intriguing. Ideally, having Matthews, Long, Barksdale, and Saffold on the roster would be great (with Saffold presumably slated long-term as RG). Does that mean that it would be Long, rather than Saffold, who would then be our magnum utility man when he returns?

    I get the impression that the difference in pay between guards and offensive tackles isn't that big these days. If we're willing to pay him like an elite player at either position, I'd imagine he'd stay. That is the big question, though, right? Are we willing to shell out say $8 mil/year to have Saffold play guard.
    I'd be a bit concerned paying Saffold 8 a year. He has missed 7, 6 & 4 games the past three years in addition to the portion of the games he had to leave.

    His contract probably needs to be incentive based on his staying on the field for 16 games. And he may be motivated to play OG for decent money "and the potential of reaching some Pro Bowls as an OG", which should also be incentivized in his next contract. He is okay at OT, but not a Pro Bowler.

    I really want him back in the fold early as a OG/OT. I think that helps Sam as well as Stacy. Sadly, I can see doing without Wells, Dahl, Williams and Smith.

    Starters Backups
    Long/Saffold ?
    OG (draft or FA) ?
    Jones ?
    Saffold ?
    Barksdale ?

    This will be interesting!
    Last edited by Richbert88; -01-03-2014 at 03:06 PM.
    Semper Fi!

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Is this the Rams' Opening Day Starting Lineup?
    By AvengerRam in forum RAM TALK
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: -06-11-2012, 07:58 PM
  2. Replies: 1
    Last Post: -11-25-2009, 07:41 PM
  3. Who will be the starting No. 2 WR on opening day?
    By AvengerRam in forum RAM TALK
    Replies: 34
    Last Post: -05-03-2009, 10:06 PM
  4. Replies: 1
    Last Post: -09-09-2005, 09:21 AM
  5. Replies: 15
    Last Post: -08-23-2004, 12:45 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •