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  1. #1
    eldfan's Avatar
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    Jackson excels as the Rams around him sink in mediocrity

    Jackson excels as the Rams around him sink in mediocrity
    By Jeff Gordon
    ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
    09/28/2009

    Steven Jackson is one of the elite players in the National Football League.

    Many Rams fans don’t want to believe this, for whatever reason, but Jackson’s greatness was displayed again Sunday.

    His offensive line did a so-so job of run blocking. Sometimes it opened holes. Sometimes it created a seam. Sometimes it caved in and allowed total Packers penetration.

    Quarterbacks Marc Bulger and Kyle Boller didn’t even try to stretch the field with this feckless passing game. They did nothing to back up the Packers defense.

    And yet Jackson rushed 27 times for 117 yards and caught five passes for another 46 yards. With the Green Bay defense locked in on Jackson, that 163-yard total is most impressive.

    Yes, he lost one fumble. No, he didn’t score a touchdown.

    But how many other NFL running backs could have generated 163 yards against the Packers Sunday within that offense?

    How many other players could have turned nothing into something as often as Jackson did during this game?

    The cautious Rams passing game doesn’t make defenses cover much of the field. Pass after pass after pass goes underneath coverage. Pass after pass after pass goes toward the sideline.

    Defenses can stack the middle of the field and challenge Jackson to run the gauntlet. "They made adjustments on their side," Jackson told reporters after the game. "They had a fifth linebacker out there with Brandon Chillar.

    "So they had some nice adjustments that we have to adjust to also. It was a chess game out there and the Green Bay Packers did a good job."

    Under tough circumstances, Steven did well with his 32 touches Sunday, When the Rams did open a hole or seam, he almost always hit it.

    He lowered his shoulders and ran north and south, using his unusual size and strength. Jackson is doing a better job of taking what is available. He is becoming a better power runner.

    Where there was absolutely nowhere to go between the tackles – a frequent problem in this game – he skipped outside and used his speed.

    Jackson has matured as a player and leader. He has worked hard since Day 1 of training camp. He has led by example. He has done and said all the right things, unlike earlier in his career.

    It is amazing the Rams can be this bad with a player that good driving the offense. How does this offense fail to exploit this ability?

    It is not easy to squander that sort of talent, but the Rams find a way.

    Their high-priced offensive line is ordinary at best. Tackle Jason Smith’s injury is no excuse. Other teams – like the Packers – suffer serious injury hits and still get the job done.

    The Rams’ quarterbacks are mediocre. As Bernie Miklasz notes, the Marc Bulger/Kyle Boller debate is hardly compelling. Neither player appears capable of leading this team to victory.

    (In our post-game chat here at STLToday.com, several fans were already fast-forwarding to rookie Keith Null. That is how bad the situation is.)

    Top wide receiver Laurent Robinson departed Sunday’s game with an unfortunate ankle injury. Speed receiver Donnie Avery seldom runs deep routes in this offense – and he offers nothing on possession patterns.

    Veteran tight end Randy McMichael has been awful The other Rams running backs are fortunate to be in the NFL.

    The only other Rams to excel offensively Sunday was tight end Daniel Fells, who caught two well-thrown TD passes from Boller. Briefly, that passing combo gave the team hope for a comeback.

    In the end, though, the Rams fell well short. By the fourth quarter they were finished.

    "Football is tricky," Jackson told reporters. "As long as we stay within on touchdown, we have a good chance to winning he game. They rallied back when we were in striking distance."

    Given the hopelessness of the current situation, some Rams fans advocate dealing Jackson to a good team for a package of draft picks to speed the rebuilding process.

    But Jackson is in his athletic prime. He has at least a couple of good years left in those legs. He is a rare talent, a special player worth building upon.

    Some how, some way, this team must rally around Jackson, locate better players to support him and find ways to win with him.

    :ramlogo:

  2. #2
    Keenum's Avatar
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    Re: Jackson excels as the Rams around him sink in mediocrity

    You do gotta give him credit, he has looked pretty darn good behind a weak offensive line.
    Man, I just wish that our O-line was as improved as I thought it was gonna be. Jackson could be running all over the place if we'd just get the right pieces in for him.

  3. #3
    Mooselini's Avatar
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    Re: Jackson excels as the Rams around him sink in mediocrity

    He has done a great job. When he scores a touchdown, it'll be an epic one. One he deserves more than any other player in the league. He is really under appreciated in the NFL.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
    Devaney, if you care about this team... fire the offensive coordinator!!!!

  4. #4
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    Re: Jackson excels as the Rams around him sink in mediocrity

    If they can get some sort of Herschel Walker like trade for Steven Jackson then I'd be for it but I don't think any team would be willing to trade that much for him because it's easier to find good RB's in the NFL than it is to find good players at other positions.

    I hope the Rams can build a good team at least for Steven Jackson's sake because the rest of the league needs to know just how good he is.

  5. #5
    #39 Fan's Avatar
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    Re: Jackson excels as the Rams around him sink in mediocrity

    Quote Originally Posted by jmk321 View Post
    I hope the Rams can build a good team at least for Steven Jackson's sake because the rest of the league needs to know just how good he is.
    Truth ....

  6. #6
    Ramblin` Ram's Avatar
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    Re: Jackson excels as the Rams around him sink in mediocrity

    the league understands how good he is, trust me..its just the media in general who dont...the kind of media who are in bed with the Cowboys,Pats etc...

  7. #7
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    Re: Jackson excels as the Rams around him sink in mediocrity

    I just hope that Jackson doesn't get tired with this sorry team, and wants to be traded or something.

  8. #8
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    Re: Jackson excels as the Rams around him sink in mediocrity

    What a dismal read. He even cites Bernie M?! After reading this I think Gordon is like Billy Zane in Titanic, grabbing a small child and boarding that life boat to escape the sinking ship. I'm not delusional I know the team is a work in progress, but wow, what a slap in the face.

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