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Thread: Korte's Blog
Rams roll dice by keeping only two quarterbacks
While a great career move for Ryan Fitzpatrick, the trade that sent the third-year quarterback to the Cincinnati Bengals seems like an unnecessary gamble for the Rams.
The Rams will go into the season with only two quarterbacks on their 53-man roster. They obviously made that decision prior to Fitzpatrick playing 2 1/2 quarters in the team’s preseason finale against the Kansas City Chiefs on Thursday night.
The Rams shopped Fitzpatrick, and the Bengals, who were unhappy with backup Doug Johnson, happened to be in the market for a quarterback.
Having two quarterbacks on your active roster has been a growing trend in the NFL. And, Fitzpatrick was slated to be a restricted free agent after the 2007 season.
However, the risk — conceding defeat if both Marc Bulger and Gus Frerotte go down in the same game — doesn’t seem to justify the reward — a conditional seventh-round pick in the 2008 NFL Draft and having an extra special teams player on the roster.
Seeing either wide receiver Drew Bennett or wide receiver Marques Hagans, who were both quarterbacks in college, lining up behind center late in a game that the Rams must win in order to clinch a playoff berth or the NFC West title would be disheartening.
And, Brock Berlin, who was less than impressive in the preseason, appears to be Plan C in the event that both Bulger and Frerotte are sidelined for an extended period.
Fitzpatrick had a scrambling element to his game that was missing from the team’s other quarterbacks. He could come into a game when the blocking schemes were breaking down and have a fighting chance for survival. The same can’t be said for Berlin.
Rams fans, who remember how the team went through three quarterbacks (Kurt Warner, Jamie Martin and Bulger) in the 2002 season, better hope that history doesn’t repeat itself.
-- Give the Rams coaching staff credit for having the guts to cut linebacker Jon Alston, a third-round pick in the 2006 NFL Draft, when they felt he was outplayed by undrafted rookie Quinton Culberson in the preseason.
The move does add to the Rams’ miserable history with third-round picks since coming to the Gateway City in 1995.
Other than defensive end Leonard Little in 1998, wide receiver Kevin Curtis in 2003 and both safety Oshiomogho Atogwe and guard Richie Incognito in 2005, the Rams haven’t had a lot of luck with third-rounders.
The list of third-rounders who never lived up to expectations includes: kicker Steve McLaughlin (1995), running back Jerald Moore (1996), safety Rich Coady (1999), offensive lineman John St. Clair (2000), linebacker Brian Allen (2001), running back Lamar Gordon (2002), wide receiver Eric Crouch (2002) and defensive end Anthony Hargrove (2004).
The jury is still out on defensive tackle Claude Wroten (2006), tight end Dominique Byrd (2006) and cornerback Jonathan Wade (2007).
-- Getting ready for Carolina has brought back some unpleasant memories for Rams coach Scott Linehan, who fired himself as play-caller after a 15-0 loss to the Panthers last November.
The Panthers ranked seventh in overall defense in the NFL last season.
“They were No. 1 against us,’’ Linehan said. “If you were going to ask me who I thought the best defense was last year, I would have said them. We have a big challenge ahead, and it won’t be hard to get the attention of our offensive players. We’ll be watching a lot more of last year’s film, unfortunately. It also will be good for us.
Re: Korte's Blog
Yo Scotty Boy...............give the ball to #39, whether it be a handoff or through the air. Okay coach???
Re: Korte's Blog
i see the panthers knocking us out of the playoffs in 2003 as the last game of the "G.S.O.T" era... then in Coach Linehan`s Rookie season they shut us out,next sunday is really gonna be a big day for us....are we gonna put the panthers to sleep or turn them into a bigger beast that will have us living in fear for years to come??
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