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  1. #1
    RamWraith's Avatar
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    It's official - Rams aren't going to playoffs

    By Jim Brighters, NFL Analyst

    (Sports Network) - What the rest of the football community already knew became official for the St. Louis Rams on Sunday. This former NFC playoff staple would miss the postseason.

    Once the final second ticked off the clock in their 27-13 loss to the resurgent Minnesota Vikings, the Rams were officially eliminated from the playoffs.

    "We are going to work to get better every single day," said interim head coach Joe Vitt. "The practice structure is not going to change, the weight lifting structure is not going to change, the fine system is still in place, the accountability factor is still there. This is not what we wanted it to be, but there's not a lot of people that get what they want in life all the time anyway."

    The 2005 season has been something off a wash for this team. Starting quarterback Marc Bulger missed significant time with a shoulder injury. All- Pro receivers Torry Holt and Isaac Bruce both sat multiple weeks.

    Injuries hurt, and so did ineffective play. The defense is ranked last in the NFL, and special teams were a concern all year. At this point, the Rams are going with Harvard product Ryan Fitzpatrick at the quarterback controls. He only threw five interceptions against the Vikings, but the rookie has shown some upside.

    What does a 5-8 team with no playoff hopes and an assumed lame-duck coach have to play for? Pride is an obvious answer, and one would hope that professionals bring their best every week.

    The development of some younger players is also on the line, quite literally, as the offensive line has two rookies starting at present. Everyone has a chance to prove themselves in the last three contests.

    Speaking of the schedule, there are two winnable games for St. Louis the rest of the way. This week, the Rams host last year's NFC champions - the Philadelphia Eagles. The Birds have gone backwards with several injuries and a gigantic pain in the rump named T.O.

    Then, it's the pathetic San Francisco ***** at the Edward Jones Dome. It shouldn't matter how sad your franchise is, you should be able to beat the ***** in your own building.

    The season finale should be tough. They go to Dallas for a tilt with the Cowboys who will more than likely be fighting for one of the final NFC playoff spots.

    That adds up to a 7-9 record. Management will be searching for a replacement for Joe Vitt as Mike Martz, who apparently wanted to return this year, may not get a Christmas card from the organization. How hard the team plays in the final three will go a long way to establishing how serious a candidate Vitt will be if and when Martz is let go.

    "We have one goal and that's to win football games," Vitt said. "That's our only goal. In practice, our goal is ongoing skill development, every player to get better every single day. There's two types of players in the National Football League, those that are getting better and those that are getting worse. The ones that are getting better are ascending players and they maximize their earning power. Those that are getting worse are descending players and a descending player if he doesn't try to get better, it could be catastrophic for his career and his earning power. That's basically what it is."


    FITZPATRICK'S PROGRESS

    Sunday's road game was Fitzpatrick's first start outside St. Louis and it could have gone better. He completed 26 passes in 45 attempts for 235 yards. Fitzpatrick threw zero touchdown passes, but did run for one. And the Ivy Leaguer did toss those eye-opening five interceptions.

    "He better learn from it and move on," said Vitt, who announced Fitzpatrick as his starter unless Bulger comes back this year. "As an interim head coach, there's a lot of things I worry about and things I can control that I'm always thinking about, but I'll say this again, I don't worry about him. He's tough."

    Fitzpatrick missed several throws and seemed increasingly uncomfortable. Minnesota's defense doesn't remind anyone of the famed "Purple People Eaters," so Fitzpatrick's performance was quite disappointing.

    "Every rep I get, I take it as a learning experience and continue to grow," Fitzpatrick said. "You remember the good plays and why they happened and also the bad plays and the things I need to improve on."


    MILESTONE SUNDAY


    The St. Louis Rams' wide receivers posted some milestones on Sunday.

    Torry Holt's second catch in the first quarter was his 594th, moving him past receivers coach Henry Ellard for second on the Rams' all-time receptions list. Two catches later, Holt collected No. 596 and that moved him past Sterling Sharpe to second on the NFL list for receptions in a player's first seven seasons.

    Isaac Bruce collected his 800th reception, making him the 14th player in NFL history to pass the 800-catch mark.


    UP NEXT

    The Eagles fly into town on Sunday. Philly is also 5-8, and has not won on the road since October 2nd when they toppled the Kansas City Chiefs


  2. #2
    RamsFan16's Avatar
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    Re: It's official - Rams aren't going to playoffs

    Captain Obvious that guy is. I knew we weren't going to make the playoffs after we lost to Arizona. That was a shocker. Better luck next year.
    RamsFan16

  3. #3
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    Re: It's official - Rams aren't going to playoffs

    You know what would be absolutely classic? To have the potential to knock Dallas out of the playoffs on their home field.

  4. #4
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    Re: It's official - Rams aren't going to playoffs

    Quote Originally Posted by txramsfan
    You know what would be absolutely classic? To have the potential to knock Dallas out of the playoffs on their home field.
    That would be an awesome feeling!
    RamsFan16

  5. #5
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    Re: It's official - Rams aren't going to playoffs

    come on win 3 straight and get to 8-8!!

  6. #6
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    Re: It's official - Rams aren't going to playoffs

    Quote Originally Posted by CanadianRam!
    come on win 3 straight and get to 8-8!!
    Na. That would be very bad. I hope it doesn't happen.
    RamsFan16

  7. #7
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    Re: It's official - Rams aren't going to playoffs

    You know what would be absolutely classic? To have the potential to knock Dallas out of the playoffs on their home field.
    Payback for all those years that the plowboys knocked us out of the playoffs.

    Revenge is bittersweet! :clanram:

    There are a couple of Cowboy fans at work who are after me to make a bet on the game.:tut
    Last edited by RAMMAN68; -12-14-2005 at 06:55 PM.
    JUST WIN ONE FOR THE FANS


    "HIT HARD, HIT FAST, AND HIT OFTEN"
    Adm. William "Bull" Halsey

  8. #8
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    Re: It's official - Rams aren't going to playoffs

    Quote Originally Posted by txramsfan
    You know what would be absolutely classic? To have the potential to knock Dallas out of the playoffs on their home field.
    That would restore my hope in the Rams if they beat the boys at home!



    :clanram: :football: :up: hone:

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