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  1. #1
    RamWraith's Avatar
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    Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    Aging offense won't be able to bail team out anymore
    By Stephen Nover of Covers.com

    The Rams have had a nice five-year run. Since 1999, St. Louis has won 70 percent of its games making the playoffs four times while reaching the Super Bowl twice and winning once.

    But there are ominous clouds signaling that good times may be coming to an end for the Rams.

    The Rams have always been careless with the ball. Theyíve led the league three straight years in turnovers. Their high-powered offense, though, has been able to bail them out. That may not be the case anymore.

    The great Marshall Faulk is 31. Thatís old for a running back. Heís slowing down and becoming injury-prone. Isaac Bruce also is 31 and isnít as dangerous as he once was. Faulk has missed at least two games each of the past four years. If he goes down again, the Rams are in trouble because backup Lamar Gordon is out after ankle surgery and rookie Steven Jackson is too raw.

    Quarterback Marc Bulger is fragile and interception-prone. The Rams only have washed-up Chris Chandler in case Bulger gets hurt. The Rams may have to begin the season, too, with a makeshift offensive line. Both center Dave Wohlabaugh and right tackle Kyle Turley are out indefinitely with injuries, guard Adam Timmerman has a bad shoulder and All-Pro left tackle Orlando Pace is doing his annual disruptive holdout.

    Maybe itís time to place a call to Jackie Slater. He did finally retire, didnít he?

    At least the Rams have their defense to bail them out. Yeah, right. The Rams' undersized front seven are vulnerable to ground attacks. At last remembrance, the Panthers were ending the Ramsí season, rushing for 216 yards and averaging 5.3 yards a carry in a playoff victory.

    Donít be surprised if the Rams defense gets worse. Grant Wistrom, the Ramsí best overall defensive lineman, signed with division rival Seattle. Leonard Little, their top pass rusher, is facing a possible suspension after another DUI arrest. And respected defensive coordinator Lovie Smith now heads up the Bears.

    Also donít look for Jeff Wilkins to make 39 of 42 field goals. That was a career year. His lifetime percentage before last season was 79 percent, not 93 percent.

    Luckily for the Rams, they play in the NFC West, which means four games against weaklings San Francisco and Arizona. So oddsmakers have set St. Louisí over/under regular season win mark at either 9 1/2 or 10. I see the Rams having trouble reaching 10 victories even being in an easy division.

    Starting with an away game in Week 2 against the Falcons, the Rams have a four-game stretch where they play three road games in four weeks. Following their bye, the Rams have four tough games in a row. They host the Patriots on Nov. 7. Then they host the Seahawks. This is followed by road games at the Bills and Packers. If the Rams defeat the Seahawks at home, they face a letdown situation the following week against what should be an improved Bills team in possible cold weather.

    Those believing the Rams can win the Super Bowl again need to do some heavy shopping. Future book odds on the Rams winning the Super Bowl range from 5-1 up to 22-1.

    On the fantasy front, be careful with Faulk. Heís not a first-round pick anymore. The earliest to take him might be mid-second round, and thatís only if a huge run on running backs happens in your league.

    Torry Holt is the consensus third-best wide receiver, behind only Randy Moss and Marvin Harrison. Holt is tremendous in yardage leagues, but until last year had never scored more than seven touchdowns in a season since joining the NFL in 1999.

    Bulger is a starting fantasy quarterback, but shouldnít be taken early. Neither should Wilkens. Let another owner reach too soon for him. Rams players are still worth grabbing, but St. Louis isnít a fantasy gold mine anymor


  2. #2
    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    That was... entertaining. I can't say I agree with everything in there, but it was a decent read.
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  3. #3
    Reborn Guest

    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    I simply refuse to listen to, agree with, or even ponder anything read or said by anybody of the sports media circle after the NBA finals. They all made complete asses out of themselves and proved once again that you can not predict or should not even attempt to make assinine ASSumptions about sports.

    Reborn

  4. #4
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    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    the offensive version of the GSOT may be a thing of the past, however.....

    1. IF Bulger comes through like Martz thinks he will
    2. IF Holt and McDonald prove to be a formidable 1-2 punch
    3. IF Jackson goes on and gives the Rams the running game they desire
    4. IF the D finally shows up to its draft potential.....

    who's better out there in the near future? Seattle? Way too many FA's after this year. Arizona? Not sure about their defense. whiners? they are on a rebuilding project, not a rebuilding year.

  5. #5
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    Yawn. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

  6. #6
    coy bacon is offline Registered User
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    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    Ya'll got to remember that these sports writers are working men. They got mouths to feed. Do you want their families to go hungry? They got to write to make a buck, and if they don't write something plausible, relevent, and attention-grabbing, then its off to the bread line for them.

    And, if you guys don't know, sports writers don't make a lot of green.

    So cut the poor writers some slack. Was the article a bore? You bet it was. It was just another hypothetical piece of rhetoric meant to spark the imagination and perhaps rile you a bit. Change the slant slightly, and one could predict a certain fantastic season for the Rams this year.

    And, just a reminder to ya'll... fans like you probably know far more about the team than the average local sports writer. They do it cause they have to, you do it cause you love it. Heck the writer that wrote that article could be a 48+1er fan.

  7. #7
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    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    Quote Originally Posted by NickSeiler
    That was... entertaining. I can't say I agree with everything in there, but it was a decent read.
    I would love to say it was entertaining, but I'm just not in to fiction. I would love to analyze this article from cover.com (whatever that is), but I found that I see 92.87% of this article complete garbage. So what's the point of even trying?
    "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

  8. #8
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    Quote Originally Posted by coy bacon
    Ya'll got to remember that these sports writers are working men. They got mouths to feed. Do you want their families to go hungry? They got to write to make a buck, and if they don't write something plausible, relevent, and attention-grabbing, then its off to the bread line for them.

    And, if you guys don't know, sports writers don't make a lot of green.

    So cut the poor writers some slack. Was the article a bore? You bet it was. It was just another hypothetical piece of rhetoric meant to spark the imagination and perhaps rile you a bit. Change the slant slightly, and one could predict a certain fantastic season for the Rams this year.

    And, just a reminder to ya'll... fans like you probably know far more about the team than the average local sports writer. They do it cause they have to, you do it cause you love it. Heck the writer that wrote that article could be a 48+1er fan.
    NO!!!! I demand excellence in all who seed to impose their opinions upon the masses (which may explain why I haven't liked any politician since Abe Lincoln).

  9. #9
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    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    Quote Originally Posted by coy bacon
    Ya'll got to remember that these sports writers are working men. They got mouths to feed. Do you want their families to go hungry? They got to write to make a buck, and if they don't write something plausible, relevent, and attention-grabbing, then its off to the bread line for them.
    Would it be too much to ask them to have a little imagination while they are plying their trade? Do they ever bother to question why the HeadLine Writer selected what they did before their "mouth-feeding" composition got to print? Do they ever ask why the editorial changes made to their article are allowed to stand even though it has to be apparent for all to see that their points are no longer tied together? Hell, do they even ask themselves why their publication is even talking about that particular topic at the moment?

    The writers will get their slack cut after they take ownership of the nonsense they perpetuate.

  10. #10
    Reborn Guest

    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    When I go to work I take with me a sense of ethic and integrity. I could never just write a piece of junk like this and be content because it secures my next paycheck.

    Reborn

  11. #11
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    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    unfortunatly trout, there are way to many people wanting to read stuff like that so he gets paid very easlily


  12. #12
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    Wait a second!!! "Reborn" is Trout!?!?!!?! Why didn't anyone tell me! :redface:

  13. #13
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    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    Aging offense won't be able to bail team out anymore

    Honestly, I didn't even get past the title of this article before I stopped reading. Obviously the dude didn't watch a single Rams game last year...if he had, it would have been obvious to him that it was the DEFENSE that bailed out the team all season long.
    Clannie Nominee for ClanRam's Thickest Poster

  14. #14
    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    Quote Originally Posted by Yodude
    it would have been obvious to him that it was the DEFENSE that bailed out the team all season long.
    Yes, the defense did bail the team out at times. But all season long? I disagree.
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  15. #15
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Re: Rams' amazing run may be about to end

    As for "aging"...


    Well, individual players are, of course, aging (unless they've entered a strange state of temporal statis). But, as a whole, is the offense really "aging?"

    Let's look...

    QB: Bulger is younger than Warner was
    RB: Faulk is aging, but Jackson is young
    FB: Goodspeed... not too old
    WR: Bruce... aging, but gracefully
    WR: Holt... aging, but has not peaked
    OT: Pace... still in his prime
    OT: Turley... ????
    OG: King/Tercero... young
    OG: Timmerman.... aging, but still has some fight in him
    C: McCollum... ditto
    TE: Manumaleuna... still has not peaked

    That's an "aging" offense

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