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  1. #1
    Nick's Avatar
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    Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    Rams are happy with free-agent pickups
    By Jim Thomas
    Of the Post-Dispatch
    Saturday, Apr. 09 2005

    The Rams made a big splash early in free agency, signing a pair of starting
    linebackers in Dexter Coakley and Chris Claiborne.

    Two weeks later came their biggest move of the offseason - signing offensive
    tackle Orlando Pace to a multi-year deal.

    And all along, the Rams have been sprinkling in role players at low-to-moderate
    prices:

    A point-of-attack blocking tight end in Roland Williams.

    A replacement for Bryce Fisher at defensive end in Jay Williams.

    A pair of cornerback-safety "tweeners" who also can help on special teams in
    Michael Stone and Michael Hawthorne.

    "By and large, I'm very, very pleased with what we've done in the offseason,"
    coach Mike Martz said. "It takes all the pressure off the draft. It really
    does."

    Adding Coakley and Clairborne dramatically lessens the need to select a
    linebacker in the draft, set for April 23-24.

    "Dexter Coakley, his track record in this league speaks for itself," Rams
    linebackers coach Joe Vitt said. "Great character, great person in the locker
    room, in the weight room, on the playing field. And he's a guy that's a year
    removed from participating in the Pro Bowl. He does not have descending skills.

    "Chris Clairborne is a kid that we targeted early. We wanted a bigger banger
    from tackle to tackle to start punishing ballcarriers."

    Kurt Schottenheimer, the Rams' new secondary coach, was Claiborne's defensive
    coordinator in Detroit in 2002. After playing strongside linebacker in
    Minnesota, Clairborne will return to middle linebacker for the Rams.

    The third starter in what could be a formidable linebacker corps will be Pisa
    Tinoisamoa. That's right, the planned switch of Tinoisamoa to safety has been
    grounded.


    "He was a little nervous about the switch, that's one of the reasons we didn't
    make it," Martz said.

    The addition of Stone and Hawthorne to the depth chart at safety also helped
    make up Martz's mind about Tinoisamoa.

    It has yet to be decided who will play weakside and strongside among Coakley
    and Tinoisamoa. But the linebacker corps has the capability of going from a
    major liability in 2004 to a team strength.

    Besides Coakley and Tinoisamoa on the outside, and Claiborne in the middle, the
    Rams now have Brandon Chillar, Trev Faulk and Robert Thomas off the bench.

    Tommy Polley, a starter for most of his four seasons with the Rams, remains an
    unrestricted free agent. The Rams haven't shown any interest in re-signing him,
    and Polley has received little or no play in the free-agent market.

    Hawthorne agreed to terms Wednesday on a one-year deal. There's a
    Schottenheimer connection here, too, because Schottenheimer was Hawthorne's
    secondary coach last season in Green Bay.

    "We're very impressed with his athleticism, and his flexibility of being a
    corner, or being a safety, or coming down in the slot at the nickel," Martz
    said.

    With Tinoisamoa back at linebacker, the only other safety on the roster besides
    Stone and Hawthorne is Adam Archuleta. But Archuleta is coming off a season in
    which he was plagued by a back injury. Even if Archuleta's back is fine, the
    Rams still need a fourth safety on the roster. And they may need another
    starter if Stone and Hawthorne can't win the job.

    "We feel like we need to get a safety in the draft," Martz said.

    Veteran Aeneas Williams remains a free agent, but according to team sources
    remains unsure if he wants to continue playing. Williams, 37, finished the 2004
    season on the injured reserve list with an arthritic condition in his shoulder.

    On the offensive line, the re-signing of Pace removes some of the pressure to
    draft an offensive tackle in the first round. But with Kyle Turley almost
    certainly a June 2 salary-cap casualty, the Rams don't have a clear-cut starter
    at right tackle. Florida State's Alex Barron, the top offensive tackle in the
    draft, is scheduled to arrive in St. Louis on Monday for a visit.

    ClanRam ModCast: Episode Four
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  2. #2
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    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    well I don't know about anybody else but I'm pleased Pisa is back at LB...


    steve :ramlogo:

  3. #3
    general counsel Guest

    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    This is very good news. Our draft plan is quite clear, although i am not suggesting the order is set in stone, but we need right tackle and safety. I appreciate that an additional corner would be nice, but i continute to contend that we have a better shot at picking up a safety post june 1 than a right tackle. I dont believe there is any realistic shot we can get an affordable right tackle post june who is any real upgrade from what we have now.

    ramming speed to all

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    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    Quote Originally Posted by NickSeiler
    Rams are happy with free-agent pickups
    By Jim Thomas
    Of the Post-Dispatch
    Saturday, Apr. 09 2005

    "By and large, I'm very, very pleased with what we've done in the offseason,"
    coach Mike Martz said. "It takes all the pressure off the draft. It really
    does."
    Does this mean Martz has his eye on Matt Jones in round 1

  5. #5
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    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    But the linebacker corps has the capability of going from a
    major liability in 2004 to a team strength.
    I don't know if I'm ready to call them a strength yet, but they are certainly much improved.....or at least Marmie has less of an excuse.
    The Rams haven't shown any interest in re-signing him, and Polley has received little or no play in the free-agent market.
    It's sounding like he'll be playing for a leper colony next year. Nobody's going to sign this guy.
    And they may need another
    starter if Stone and Hawthorne can't win the job.
    Do we really want Stone or Hawthorne to win the job? If so, let's hope for a breakout year from one or both of them.
    On the offensive line, the re-signing of Pace removes some of the pressure to draft an offensive tackle in the first round.
    Sniff, sniff, sniff Is that pre-draft posturing I smell?
    "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

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    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    Quote Originally Posted by ramstiles
    Does this mean Martz has his eye on Matt Jones in round 1
    Man, I hope not. Unless he can play RT, that is a luxury we can't afford. But (as I said in my "what the" thread), if we make some off-the-wall pick in the 1st, it'll probably be Jones, IMHO.
    "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

  7. #7
    general counsel Guest

    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    Unless deacon jones is in shape and available at #19, i will bet my reputation that we are not going to take anyone named jones in the first round, given that i will also bet that the Pac Man will not be available when we pick.

    ramming speed to all

    general counsel

  8. #8
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    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison
    Sniff, sniff, sniff Is that pre-draft posturing I smell?
    I smell it too. The draft is closing in.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  9. #9
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    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    Quote Originally Posted by UtterBlitz
    I smell it too. The draft is closing in.
    Brown or Barnes I dont care wich one. Rt its gotta be 1st round.:tough:
    My heart beats crazy and my blood runs wild

  10. #10
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    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    Brodney Pool would be ok with me too.

  11. #11
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    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    Pisa is good in pursuit, and has a great attitude. BUT, teams ABUSE him in the running game. They run right at him and PISA cannot stand up at the point of attack. I think teams will (like last year) look him up and pound him, he'll have shoulder problems and be limited after being pounded.

    There was a valid reason they were looking to move him farther from the line of scrimmage.

  12. #12
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    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    I think Pisa would make a great SS, but it's still more about the guy who's currently playing SS having to try FS, which probably is not an experiment we want to see.

    I hope they at least have him learn a bit of the SS position in practice for emergencies, an in case he is good at it. He could play SS in a bind, and there is now some extra LB's that could fill his LB spot, if some shuffling was needed due to injuries, etc...

  13. #13
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    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    I thought it was another stupid move to try Pisa at SS. Just another reason to have no confidence in the D coaching. Well, it didn't take them too long to figure out it was a stupid move. That's better than nothing. Still, just another indication of CDC - "Dufuses Coaching Defense".

    I hope they don't draft a baseball player to play SS.

    If Pisa can't hold his own at LB, lose him and get another. This isn't charity, it's pro football.

  14. #14
    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    Quote Originally Posted by coy bacon
    Still, just another indication of CDC - "Dufuses Coaching Defense".
    I find it's often hard to insult someone's intelligence with an acronym when you then proceed to mess up the associated name that goes along with it. Better luck next time. :redface:
    ClanRam ModCast: Episode Four
    Rams Discussion Right at Your Fingertips!



  15. #15
    ZigZagRam's Avatar
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    Re: Pisa officially back at LB - PD

    I don't think this was a stupid attempt. Pisa's built like a safety and has plenty of speed to play well at the position. Many people projected him as a safety coming out of the draft. Archuleta hasn't done well in coverage, but if we were to put him in more of a zone, there's no reason why he couldn't perform decently well.

    It's funny how people criticize every move this coaching staff makes. I guess it was stupid for Lovie to move Archuleta from LB to SS. I suppose it was stupid to move Little from LB to DE (that was in 2000 after Martz took over correct?). It never fails.

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