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Thread: Rams: Five things to know
Rams: Five things to know
By Pete Prisco
CBSSports.com Senior Writer
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Observations from St. Louis Rams practices with the Tennessee Titans:
1. Steven Jackson isn't with the Rams because he wants a new contract. The two sides are said to be far apart, though word is the Rams have offered Jackson a deal that will pay him an average of $7 million a season. Jackson won't sit out the season because no player is stupid enough to do that anymore. So Rams fans need to chill. He'll be there. And when he is, look for him to have a new contract, maybe not the one he wants, but he'll get something. Jackson is a must for the Rams offense if they are to have a chance to win the NFC West.
2. The Rams offense struggled last season in part because of injuries to the line. It should be better this year with the return of tackle Orlando Pace and guard Richie Incognito from injuries. The one position that should worry Rams fans is center. It appears Brett Romberg will be the starter but he is small for the position and has trouble with bigger inside players.
3. With Isaac Bruce gone to San Francisco in free agency, it's time for Drew Bennett to step up and become more of a factor opposite Torry Holt. Bennett was a disappointment in his first season with the Rams after coming over from the Titans in free agency in 2007. The Rams also hope rookie Donnie Avery can be a factor as a slot receiver, but he has been nagged by a groin injury. That has Dante Hall in the lead as the slot receiver. Thankfully for the Rams, Holt can still get it done.
4. After a shaky 2007 season, in which he actually looked a little jumpy in the pocket from all the hits, quarterback Marc Bulger has looked much better in camp. Bulger has to get back to his 2006 ways, when he threw for over 4,000 yards, if the Rams are going to make strides on offense. It helps having veteran Trent Green as a backup. Both know the playbook of new offensive coordinator Al Saunders.
5. This is probably it for coach Scott Linehan if the Rams don't make the playoffs. In his fourth season, Linehan had a tough go of it in 2007. He had a couple of sideline screaming matches with his players last season. I like Linehan as a guy and I still think he can win in this league. But this is his make-or-break season. He gave play-calling duties to Saunders, which says something about how important he thinks this is for him as a coach.
-08-08-2008 #3Registered User
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Re: Rams: Five things to know
I'm not sure how much "inside information" he really has, or if he's just speculating, but I'd rather Hall be a pure returner and let someone else handle the 3rd WR spot.
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