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  1. #1
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    Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    By R.B. FALLSTROM - AP Sports Writer
    2007-08-14

    ST. LOUIS (AP) -Even before the first preseason game, St. Louis Rams defensive end Leonard Little was convinced things would be different this year. A strong initial effort did nothing to change his view.

    The Rams limited the Vikings to 215 yards and three points in a 13-10 opening exhibition victory last Friday, holding Minnesota's offense to three points. St. Louis, next to last in the NFL against the run last year, allowed 87 yards rushing.

    ``I think our defense is a whole lot better,'' Little said. ``It's been a while since I've been on a defense this good.''

    The Rams struggled last year in a new system under defensive coordinator Jim Haslett. Players have said from the first day of training camp there's a much higher comfort level with a season under their belts. St. Louis again addressed defense in the offseason, adding end James Hall as a complement to Little and drafting lineman Adam Carriker in the first round.

    Manning both nose guard and tackle, Carriker has helped solidify a line that shouldered much of the blame for last year's woes. Linebacker Pisa Tinoisamoa's return to health after an injury-plagued 2006 also is a plus.

    Little said the difference shows in the checkdowns players are able to make before the snap. Unfamiliarity with the defense prevented that most of last season.

    ``We're more experienced, and you can tell the difference when we're out there,'' Little said. ``We were just learning the defense last year.''

    Little said it's time the defense, which allowed nine 100-yard rushing games in the first 12 weeks and 10 overall, help up its end.

    ``We didn't stop the run well at all last year,'' Little said. ``We've got a lot of talent on defense and we've got to go out there and show it on the field.

    ``We've got to prove that we can be a defense that teams will think about.''

    Little had 13 sacks last year, the second-highest total of his career, and was a Pro Bowl alternate. Hall had five in seven games for the Lions, and his presence could mean less double-teaming on Little.

    Last year, the Rams ended up with rookie Victor Adeyanju at the other end after giving up on Anthony Hargrove, who skipped two days of practice and was subsequently traded to Buffalo. In the offseason they also cut ties with nose tackle Jimmy Kennedy, a first-round pick in 2003 who disappointed, trading him to Denver for a draft pick.

    The Rams expect more pressure up the middle, which should clear the road a bit for Little to terrorize the quarterback.

    Like most of the front-line players, Little saw limited action in the exhibition opener, calling it a night after two series. He was hoping to get a little more this Saturday in the second exhibition against the Chargers.

    ``We didn't have enough plays that we could really critique ourselves,'' Little said. ``As the preseason goes on, we'll be able to do that because we'll be getting more plays.''

    Over the years, Little said he's learned to preserve himself at this time of year.

    ``When you're younger, you're all gung-ho, you're going out and doing whatever,'' Little said. ``I take care of my body now, and I know what it takes to go through an entire season.''


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    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    Quote Originally Posted by RamWraith View Post
    By R.B. FALLSTROM - AP Sports Writer
    2007-08-14

    ST. LOUIS (AP) -Even before the first preseason game, St. Louis Rams defensive end Leonard Little was convinced things would be different this year. A strong initial effort did nothing to change his view.

    The Rams limited the Vikings to 215 yards and three points in a 13-10 opening exhibition victory last Friday, holding Minnesota's offense to three points. St. Louis, next to last in the NFL against the run last year, allowed 87 yards rushing.

    ``I think our defense is a whole lot better,'' Little said. ``It's been a while since I've been on a defense this good.''
    Let's not get carried away Mr Little, it was against the Vikings offense. I hope we are better but the Vikings were hardly a good test.
    Quote Originally Posted by ramsbruce
    Tre was running great against an awful NYG run defense. 5.8 YPC yet he only gets 13 carries. I can't wait until the Rams abandon you, Schotty.

  3. #3
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    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    Quote Originally Posted by ramsbruce View Post
    Let's not get carried away Mr Little, it was against the Vikings offense. I hope we are better but the Vikings were hardly a good test.
    The Chargers even without Tomlinson should provide a more than adequate test, particularly if Norv T. is true to his word and plays his starters for the entire 1st half. Come Saturday I guess we'll find out how much our run D has improved ...

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    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    Quote Originally Posted by RamWraith View Post
    By R.B. FALLSTROM - AP Sports Writer
    2007-08-14

    ST. LOUIS (AP) -Even before the first preseason game, St. Louis Rams defensive end Leonard Little was convinced things would be different this year. A strong initial effort did nothing to change his view.


    ``I think our defense is a whole lot better,'' Little said. ``It's been a while since I've been on a defense this good.''

    The Rams struggled last year in a new system under defensive coordinator Jim Haslett. Players have said from the first day of training camp there's a much higher comfort level with a season under their belts. St. Louis again addressed defense in the offseason, adding end James Hall as a complement to Little and drafting lineman Adam Carriker in the first round.

    Manning both nose guard and tackle, Carriker has helped solidify a line that shouldered much of the blame for last year's woes. Linebacker Pisa Tinoisamoa's return to health after an injury-plagued 2006 also is a plus.

    Little said the difference shows in the checkdowns players are able to make before the snap. Unfamiliarity with the defense prevented that most of last season.

    ``We're more experienced, and you can tell the difference when we're out there,'' Little said. ``We were just learning the defense last year.''

    Little said it's time the defense, which allowed nine 100-yard rushing games in the first 12 weeks and 10 overall, help up its end.

    ``We didn't stop the run well at all last year,'' Little said. ``We've got a lot of talent on defense and we've got to go out there and show it on the field.

    ``We've got to prove that we can be a defense that teams will think about.''

    Little had 13 sacks last year, the second-highest total of his career, and was a Pro Bowl alternate. Hall had five in seven games for the Lions, and his presence could mean less double-teaming on Little.


    The Rams expect more pressure up the middle, which should clear the road a bit for Little to terrorize the quarterback.
    Familiarty with Jim Haslett's defense, PRICELESS!

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    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    Our terrific DE Little may not be coaching material in terms of evaluating his own defense but I think he knows what he's talking about.

    And I'm alright with it! ...Okay, I'm not coaching material either.

  6. #6
    blood85 Guest

    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    Shoot...any improvement against a stout offense like that of the Bolts would be an improvement.

  7. #7
    theodus69 Guest

    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    A.Peterson upgraded the Viking Offense right away. so to say don't get so happy yet? well Leonard has reason to be excited

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    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    Quote Originally Posted by ramsbruce View Post
    Let's not get carried away Mr Little, it was against the Vikings offense. I hope we are better but the Vikings were hardly a good test.
    It was a good test against Birk and Co.

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    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    IIRC, the Vikings has one of the best offensive lines in the league. They ran all over many a team last season ...

    I love Leonard Little's attitude. A little confidence can go a long way, especially for a defense filled with young players. If Little says the D is improved, and it is one of the best D's he has been involved with, who are we to disagree ...

    Given what we have seen so far, I see no reason for anything other than optimism ...

    I will believe the D is improved until I see otherwise. Another year under Haslett, some experience, confidence, and a dose of A. Carrkier goes a long way for me ...

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    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    Quote Originally Posted by blood85 View Post
    Shoot...any improvement against a stout offense like that of the Bolts would be an improvement.
    I agree. Hopefully the Chargers starters play the first half like Norv Turner said and then we will have a better idea on where we stand as a defense.
    Quote Originally Posted by ramsbruce
    Tre was running great against an awful NYG run defense. 5.8 YPC yet he only gets 13 carries. I can't wait until the Rams abandon you, Schotty.

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    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    Quote Originally Posted by theodus69 View Post
    A.Peterson upgraded the Viking Offense right away. so to say don't get so happy yet? well Leonard has reason to be excited
    Come on, the Vikings offense is hardly a powerhouse with or without Peterson. Peterson only had 11 carries in the game, they were not much of a test with the offense that they have. So to say don't get too excited in general after one preseason game against a below average offensive team is realistic at this point.
    Quote Originally Posted by ramsbruce
    Tre was running great against an awful NYG run defense. 5.8 YPC yet he only gets 13 carries. I can't wait until the Rams abandon you, Schotty.

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    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    Quote Originally Posted by prof22693 View Post
    It was a good test against Birk and Co.
    It was a decent test for a few individuals like Carriker, but overall it wasn't much of a test. The Chargers on the other hand are a much better gauge for us.
    Quote Originally Posted by ramsbruce
    Tre was running great against an awful NYG run defense. 5.8 YPC yet he only gets 13 carries. I can't wait until the Rams abandon you, Schotty.

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    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    Quote Originally Posted by ramsbruce View Post
    Come on, the Vikings offense is hardly a powerhouse with or without Peterson. Peterson only had 11 carries in the game, they were not much of a test with the offense that they have. So to say don't get too excited in general after one preseason game against a below average offensive team is realistic at this point.
    I agree we shouldn't get to excited after 1 preseason game against the likes of the Minnesota Vikings. But....B-U-T how many runningbacks looked like all-pros against us last season, starters and/or backups?

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    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    Quote Originally Posted by laram0 View Post
    I agree we shouldn't get to excited after 1 preseason game against the likes of the Minnesota Vikings. But....B-U-T how many runningbacks looked like all-pros against us last season, starters and/or backups?
    How many of those RBs from last year were in their first game ever, still a little worried about their collarbone, and only had 11 carries.

    This will be a better discussion after we see what happens with the Chargers, and even after that it's still only preseason, so if we get torched I will still hold on to some hope that we are or can get better, and if we shut them down I won't think we are the next coming of the 85 Bears either.
    Quote Originally Posted by ramsbruce
    Tre was running great against an awful NYG run defense. 5.8 YPC yet he only gets 13 carries. I can't wait until the Rams abandon you, Schotty.

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    Re: Rams' end predicts big improvement for defense

    Quote Originally Posted by ramsbruce View Post
    How many of those RBs from last year were in their first game ever, still a little worried about their collarbone, and only had 11 carries.

    This will be a better discussion after we see what happens with the Chargers, and even after that it's still only preseason, so if we get torched I will still hold on to some hope that we are or can get better, and if we shut them down I won't think we are the next coming of the 85 Bears either.
    You're absolutely correct, it will be the coming of the 2007 RAMS!

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