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  1. #1
    Nick's Avatar
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    Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    Some post game thoughts from today...

    • Wow, could this defense have looked any worse in the first quarter? You wouldn't have thought that the Rams defense would allow only three points in the final three quarters of today's game after watching the ease in which the Saints scored early. Credit the Rams and the coaching staff for not giving up in this game after a poor first quarter showing.
    • Now that I've given the coaching staff props, Larry Marmie needs to put a leash on these defenders and get some discipline back on this unit. If the Rams aren't blowing assignments or overpursuing on the run, then they're committing horrible penalties on third down to keep opposing drives alive. It was great to see the turnover drought broken today, but Furrey's turnover really shouldn't have been. This unit made some strides in the second half today, but still has a long way to go if we're going to be competitive.
    • Jamie Martin played a decent game. The Rams offense was much less risky with him behind center. They didn't take the kind of shots down the field that we're used to seeing, and maybe some of that had to do with a depleted receiving corps as well. Martin didn't commit any turnovers today (though one pass was nearly intercepted by Bullocks), but missed a number of wide open receivers. The deep pass to Kevin Curtis near the end of the game was more a play by Curtis than Martin, as Kevin had to jump up between two defenders and hip-catch the underthrown ball. Hopefully the time playing with the first unit today will have Martin better prepared for next week's game against the Jaguars.
    • Steven Jackson is the real deal, and it frustrates me that so many people are riding his back. Jackson started with a bang today and slowed down a bit after his first run, but overall played a heck of a game, including a great second-effort fourth down touchdown that I'm not sure Marshall gets if he's in there. Jackson has the strength to really power forward, and when he was good run blocking in front of him and is running downhill, will gain you yards. Marshall Faulk has done well in his role as a change of pace back, and like other fans, I'd like to see more packages where these two share the field, but with our head coach/play designer away from the team, I don't expect to see it any time soon.
    • What do you know? When Chris Claiborne and Dexter Coakley actually stay on the field instead of substitute out for back-ups in pass packages, they make things happen. Coakley and Claiborne combined for an unofficial ten tackles and two assists, Coakley especially looking impressive with a sack as well. Both of them seemed to step it up in the second quarter to help keep Saint points off the board. Hopefully Marmie continues to utilize packages that feature the two linebackers we went out this spring and got to improve our defensive unit.
    • Ron Bartell looked fairly sharp today, despite a defensive holding penalty late in the game. He was around his man and broke up a number of passes. Based on his showing today, it would be worth seeing if Bartell can be worked into the defensive packages more, especially if Dejuan Groce is playing injured and it's affecting his play as it did today. Groce, who perhaps going into this game was challenging Travis Fisher for the title of best corner on this team, looked ineffective. Perhaps Bartell can take some pressure off of Groce by rotating in for him, because I think the Rams would prefer to keep the small-but-tough Corey Ivy in the slot.
    • Tyoka Jackson is really proving himself as a quality role-player on this Rams team. When Leonard Little went down against Seattle, Jackson stepped in and sacked Hasselbeck twice. Today against the Saints, Jackson forced a fumble and blocked a field goal. If anyone is still looking for a leader on defense, look no further than Tyoka Jackson. He may not be on the field 60 minutes, but he makes the best out of the time he's there, and is a positive example for the younger players.
    • You have to think that Mike Martz felt vindicated when the end around from Jackson to Curtis worked in the red zone for a touchdown, but deep inside, a small part of him probably wished it was him on the sideline calling it again and watching it succeed. I still think that's a pretty dangerous call to make at that part of the field, but I'll take the outcome any day. Great job by Martin blocking Mike McKenzie for the split second that Kevin Curtis needed to get to the corner and dive past the pylon.
    • Next come the Jacksonville Jaguars, who are a very dangerous team in my opinion. The Jags are coming off of a bye and a hard fought road win in Pittsburgh, so getting back to .500 will not be easy for this Rams team. Jacksonville has not allowed an opponent to score in the first quarter at all this season, which doesn't bode well for a Ram team that often this year has started slowly. The Jags also have their sights set on Jamie Martin, because they have a good history this season of beating teams who are starting a back-up quarterback (Jets and Steelers). RB Fred Taylor and ORT Maurice Williams look to be back for the game this coming weekend, but OLT Mike Pearson will probably be out, which could allow Anthony Hargrove to have a good day harassing Byron Leftwich. The interior blocking of the Jaguars has also been suspect, which could spell good things for Ryan Pickett and Jimmy Kennedy. But Jacksonville's D-line are salivating at the idea of facing a weak interior Rams offensive line, as Jaguar tackles Marcus Stroud and John Henderson are two of the league's best, and will surely give Terrell, McCollum, and Timmerman a handful.


  2. #2
    STLRAMSFAN Guest

    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    Quote Originally Posted by NickSeiler
    Steven Jackson is the real deal, and it frustrates me that so many people are riding his back. Jackson started with a bang today and slowed down a bit after his first run, but overall played a heck of a game, including a great second-effort fourth down touchdown that I'm not sure Marshall gets if he's in there. Jackson has the strength to really power forward, and when he was good run blocking in front of him and is running downhill, will gain you yards. Marshall Faulk has done well in his role as a change of pace back, and like other fans, I'd like to see more packages where these two share the field, but with our head coach/play designer away from the team, I don't expect to see it any time soon.
    That’s a good assessment of the RB situation I sometimes get frustrated because I think some people not you have put on their rose colored glasses with this guy. I think that they have really over hyped him as a player. I was high on this guy in preseason but the more I see of him the more average he looks to me. I have not begun to burry Faulk yet as a RB I still think he is a better back at this point. Some people don’t care its like the Warner Bulger debate was they take there side and that’s it.

    Goal line plays running straight ahead Jackson maybe a better option. My problem with Jackson is he is not elusive at all and gets stuffed for no gain to often. Other then his first run for 49 yards that I think anyone would agree was wide open and Marshall could have run he was 19 carries for 2.5-yard average. I would like to see the RB role be closer to 50/50. Instead of 91%(20 of 22) of the running plays is Jackson.
    Last edited by STLRAMSFAN; -10-23-2005 at 08:41 PM.

  3. #3
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    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    Quote Originally Posted by NickSeiler

    Credit the Rams and the coaching staff for not giving up in this game after a poor first quarter showing.

    Now that I've given the coaching staff props, Larry Marmie needs to ... get some discipline back on this unit.
    What I am curious about his who was responsible for what I would call, more aggressive play calling. I saw Vitt comment after the last game that he did some play calling in the redzone. I'm just wondering whether the blitzing and stunting were as a direct result of his command and control? The indiscipline is a reflection on Marmie as far as I am concerned and I'm not ready to credit him with changing his stripes as far as defensive play calling goes.

    Steven Jackson is the real deal, and it frustrates me that so many people are riding his back. ... Marshall Faulk has done well in his role as a change of pace back, and like other fans, I'd like to see more packages where these two share the field, but with our head coach/play designer away from the team, I don't expect to see it any time soon.
    Unfortunately Jackson is seeing a lot of his carries taken away by the scoreboard I suspect. But even when Mad Mike was here he wasn't utilizing Faulk enough - either in the slot, 4th WR or in two back sets with Jackson. Him returning isn't going to change anything in this regard. And that's a shame however you want to look at it.

    You have to think that Mike Martz felt vindicated when the end around from Jackson to Curtis worked in the red zone for a touchdown, but deep inside, a small part of him probably wished it was him on the sideline calling it again and watching it succeed. I still think that's a pretty dangerous call to make at that part of the field, but I'll take the outcome any day.
    One can never argue with success, so the fact it succeeded makes it a steep road to climb , but ... I think this call was more of Fairchild blowing a kiss to his buddy than sense. I guess Jackson practiced it this time rather than Faulk and it was a better call with Curtis than McDon't. But it was reckless. Just like his 3rd down draw with Faulk last week inside the 10. Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery but it isn't necessarily a guarantee for long term success.

  4. #4
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    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    Couple of negative thoughts on the game. Although I am proud of this team, I think there are a lot of glaring weaknesses that showed in this game.

    1) Our run blocking is really bad. Timmerman and McCollum are way past their prime, especially in this area.

    2) Lots of stupid mistakes on defense that cost us 3rd downs.

    3) Marmie still needs to go

    4) Martin is weak, even for a back up.

    5) Not having a true fullback is hurting Jackson and his style

    6) McDonald is not a one or a 2 receiver.

    7) Why can't Faulk line up and play receiver??

    8) We need to fix the tight end position. There is no true threat there

  5. #5
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    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    Yes i think that Marshall can be and should be used more in this offense. He can still make people miss and he is a stronger YAC player than say our other receivers!

  6. #6
    STLRAMSFAN Guest

    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    Quote Originally Posted by RamWraith
    1) Our run blocking is really bad. Timmerman and McCollum are way past their prime, especially in this area.
    Jackson has to have a big hole to run if he don’t he gets stuffed and we blame our OL. Which may not be opening the holes but I also think Jackson hit the line before he let the blocks develop a few times today. I would be interested in seeing Faulk run more then 9% of the running plays. He has a higher average this year then Jackson it definitely would not hurt our run game.
    5) Not having a true fullback is hurting Jackson and his style
    If it hurts his style they should try Faulks style.

    7) Why can't Faulk line up and play receiver??
    Why can't he run more are they afraid of a controversy?
    Last edited by STLRAMSFAN; -10-23-2005 at 09:28 PM.

  7. #7
    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    Quote Originally Posted by STLRAMSFAN
    I also think Jackson hit the line before he let the blocks develop a few times today.
    This is great. Either Jackson gets criticized for dancing in the backfield, or he gets criticized for not letting his blocks develop by running ahead too soon.

    It's one or the other. You don't hand the ball off and stand around waiting for things to come together. The O-line needs to produce a hole by the time the handoff has occurred and the runner is advancing. If they haven't, then it's on the O-line.


    Quote Originally Posted by STLRAMSFAN
    If it hurts his style they should try Faulks style.
    I don't remember Faulk being able to do much of anything without a strong lead blocker either. Look at what happened without Hodgins in front of him.

  8. #8
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    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    Quote Originally Posted by RamWraith
    5) Not having a true fullback is hurting Jackson and his style
    Damn good point, Jason. The team should consider investing in a bruising balls-to-the-wall fullback come April.

    Steven Jackson's power-running style screams for a slobberknocker of a fullback. Throw him in with a couple of new young run-blocking guards [Terrell, Incognito], possibly a new center and/or tight end, and you've got a potent mix for smash-mouth football.
    Last edited by evil disco man; -10-23-2005 at 11:18 PM.

  9. #9
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    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    I have read a lot of good points on this thread, and have a couple comments of my own. I am absolutely amazed that our D tightened up and played so well as the game went on. We played with a depleted team and pulled out an incredible win. I am shocked that we came back from down 14 points to actually win the game. Martin's throws looked like they lacked velocity to me and the game reminded me of the Chandler debacle vs. Carolina last year for 3 quarters. It seemed like our D kept us in it but the O was hopeless. Then suddenly our offense stepped up and got us an absolutely huge win. I also think that the end around play was paying homage to our fallen coach. Go Rams!!!!!

  10. #10
    sbramfan is offline Registered User
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    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    Huge win. I like our home winning percentage to stay intact, and hate home losses.

    Jackson seemed inspired in the second half. He just needs to find a way to stay motivated every play. On a couple of 3rd and shorts he "willed" his way to the first down. Not sure why that isn't the case every time...

    Reverse in the red zone was a good sign. Maybe not the best play to call in the red zone, but a good sign that this team isn't divided or falling apart...since that was obviously some love thrown to Martz by Fairchild on that play. Good for them.

    Still some holes on D, but good signs with Bartell playing very well, and Furry perhaps starting to get a better grasp of FS. Special teams is much improved, especially given that they were facing Hakim. Fair may actually be the best option at both KR/PR. Can't they just fire Marmie when Martz gets back and make Vitt the Defense Coordinator for the rest of the year?

    With the Seahawks squeaking by Dallas, now a must win vs. Jags. I think it's worth the risk to play Bulger if he can go. Cuz if they go into Seattle (who will more than likely be 6-2 at that point) at 3-5, I'm not sure having Bulger will even matter that much the rest of the way. But at 4-4, with a lot of guys coming back, they'd still be in this thing heading up to Seattle after a bye week.
    I'm sure this is debatable, but you drop 4 games this early and you are going to need to win a bunch in a row to get back in it. Next week is BIG.

    GO RAMS!

  11. #11
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    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    i think at this point every week is big.

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    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    most fans tend to forget that Marshall Faulk was the one who asked to be replaced by Jackson ........... but then again, some people can not handle the truth.


  13. #13
    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    Quote Originally Posted by sbramfan
    Jackson seemed inspired in the second half.
    This wouldn't surprise me, considering a lot of scouts commented that, in college, it was as if he ran better later in the game as he got more and more carries.


    Quote Originally Posted by sbramfan
    Special teams is much improved, especially given that they were facing Hakim. Fair may actually be the best option at both KR/PR.
    I tend to agree with both points. The special teams coverages were better for the most part, our new punter had a number of good kicks (average of 44+!), and Fair looked promising as a kick returner.


    Quote Originally Posted by sbramfan
    Can't they just fire Marmie when Martz gets back and make Vitt the Defense Coordinator for the rest of the year?
    If Vitt was responsible for the D stepping it up in the second half by being more aggressive with more blitzes and a stiff stance in the red zone, as well as utiliziing packages that feature Claiborne and Coakley more often than they've been featured, I would definitely be in favor of examining this possibility.


    Quote Originally Posted by sbramfan
    I think it's worth the risk to play Bulger if he can go.
    That's a tough one. You have a great point in that I'm not sure that Martin or Fitz get us a win against Jacksonville, because Jacksonville has put up 23 or more points in four of its six games, and I don't see them having many problems with our D. That said, what if Bulger goes in there and lacks velocity on the ball? Is this something you risk? Hard decision, but you make an excellent point - it's entirely two different things going into Seattle as either 4-4 or 3-5.

  14. #14
    RealRam's Avatar
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    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    I also think that the end around play was paying homage to our fallen coach. Go Rams!!!!! --BRUCE=G.
    Same here, BG. :up:

    That's a tough one. You have a great point in that I'm not sure that Martin or Fitz get us a win against Jacksonville, because Jacksonville has put up 23 or more points in four of its six games, and I don't see them having many problems with our D. That said, what if Bulger goes in there and lacks velocity on the ball? Is this something you risk? Hard decision, but you make an excellent point - it's entirely two different things going into Seattle as either 4-4 or 3-5. --NickSeiler / SBRamFan
    Excellent point to consider. I agree with the observation. Maybe we're better off to have Bulger return after the bye. And Bruce as well...

    :football: Martin ought to consolidate his career NOW Vs. Jaguars.

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    sbramfan is offline Registered User
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    Re: Nick's Post-Game Thoughts (what the heck, I'll join the club)

    That's a tough one. You have a great point in that I'm not sure that Martin or Fitz get us a win against Jacksonville, because Jacksonville has put up 23 or more points in four of its six games, and I don't see them having many problems with our D. That said, what if Bulger goes in there and lacks velocity on the ball? Is this something you risk? Hard decision, but you make an excellent point - it's entirely two different things going into Seattle as either 4-4 or 3-5.
    Obviously it will depend on how Bulger looks towards the end of the week.

    But I just hope they don't have a preconceived notion of "let's sit him out one more week with the bye coming up" because they just don't have that Luxury, hangin on by a thread here.

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