Results 1 to 12 of 12
  1. #1
    eldfan's Avatar
    eldfan is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Greenville N.C.
    Age
    49
    Posts
    1,655
    Rep Power
    25

    Rams have holes all over the field

    Rams have holes all over the field

    By Jeff Gordon
    STLTODAY.COM SPORTS COLUMNIST
    11/23/2009

    Had Kurt Warner stayed on the field Sunday, the Cardinals would have clubbed the Rams by about 35 points.

    This game would have ended the way the Colts game ended -– in utter humiliation for the home team.

    For two quarters at the Edward Jones Dome, the Rams were feckless on offense and helpless on defense. The first half of their 21-13 loss underscored just how many holes the franchise must fill before it can contend again.

    Let’s go down the list:


    * Next quarterback. At best, Marc Bulger could fill an interim role while this team grooms the new guy. Will the Rams use the draft to fill this need? Can they salvage one of the many failed young veterans likely to become available? Could Keith Null develop into a candidate with a full offseason of work in this offense?

    With many teams looking for long-range help at this position, it’ll be interesting to see what Billy Devaney and Steve Spagnuolo do. I would keep Null, draft a quarterback after the first round and shop for a Ryan Fitzpatrick-type to manage the offense in the meantime.


    * Run-stuffing defensive tackle. Spags hopes to build physical lines. The offensive wall has taken shape, thanks to free agent center Jason Brown, top pick Jason Smith at right tackle and veteran Adam Goldberg filling in everywhere.

    But as we saw when Tim Hightower and Beanie Wells blew through big holes Sunday, the defensive side still needs much work. This team needs a behemoth to start next to hard-working Clifton Ryan.


    * Outside linebackers. Busy rookie James Laurinaitis is definitely the right man for the middle, but his cohorts got swallowed up again Sunday. Arizona was on pace to gain 650 yards against the Rams when Warner got hurt.

    Spags has developed some no-name OLBs in his career, so maybe he can fill this need without spending high picks or big free-agent dollars. With so much else to do, that would be a good thing.


    * Pass rushing defensive end. Chris Long is developing nicely as an all-purpose DE on one side of the line, but the Rams could use a young speed rusher to succeed veterans Leonard Little and James Hall.

    The Rams must add a young playmaker at that position to give the defense more bite.


    * A big wide receiver. Donnie Avery is showing more potential as a speed guy. Once he masters the offense, Brandon Gibson could be a viable possession guy. Laurent Robinson was a decent possession receiver when he got hurt. Elusive Danny Amendola offers some potential in the slot.

    But the Rams need a big red-zone target for finishing off drives. As we saw again Sunday, completing a fade-route pass with the current offensive cast is a near impossibility.


    * Big cornerback. The demise of Bradley Fletcher left this team literally short at this position. This defense calls for a lot of “press” coverage, but Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin swatted away Rams cornerbacks like so many gnats Sunday.

    Justin King and Jonathan Wade had no chance out there.


    * Second feature back. Most NFL teams are moving toward a two-back system, backing their main running back with another back capable of excelling in all downs. Steven Jackson is a workhorse, but he could become even better with significant help.

    Samkon Gado is a fine young man, but he is NOT the answer on third-and-1 when Jackson needs a breather. A strong second back would help wear down opposing rush defenses and create more downhill momentum.


    * Third-down back. This team also needs to upgrade over Kenneth Darby. Jackson isn’t a great pass blocker, so the Rams need to add a running back capable of reading blitzes, picking up interlopers and releasing to the right spot to catch passes.

    A skilled third-down back could give the team some more two-back options. It would be nice to send such a player in motion or line him up in the slot to give defenses one more weapon to defend against.


    * Pass catching tight end. Randy McMichael appears to be done. Daniel Fells offers some potential and Billy Bajema is not a bad third guy, but a great offensive threat at this position would fit nicely into this offense.

    The team found some key pieces this year while offloading a lot of dead weight. The Rams added some younger depth guys with some upside, creating the potential for a more competitive camp in 2010.

    But as you can see, the Rams' shopping list is extensive. By all means available, Devaney and Co. must add impact players at multiple positions as soon as possible.

    :ramlogo:

  2. #2
    AvengerRam's Avatar
    AvengerRam is online now Moderator Emeritus
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Longwood, Florida, United States
    Age
    46
    Posts
    18,824
    Rep Power
    168

    Re: Rams have holes all over the field

    Quote Originally Posted by eldfan View Post
    Had Kurt Warner stayed on the field Sunday, the Cardinals would have clubbed the Rams by about 35 points.

    This game would have ended the way the Colts game ended -– in utter humiliation for the home team.
    That is an absurd statement. What... you've never heard of halftime adjustments?

    I'm not saying the outcome would have necessarily been exactly the same had Warner stayed in the game, but you can't simply presume that the Rams would have failed to make some adjustments after halftime and slowed Warner down.

  3. #3
    39thebeast's Avatar
    39thebeast is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    conecticut
    Posts
    2,740
    Rep Power
    38

    Re: Rams have holes all over the field

    Pretty good list here wouldn't really add anything or take anything off.

  4. #4
    txramsfan's Avatar
    txramsfan is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Poplar Bluff, MO
    Age
    50
    Posts
    7,266
    Rep Power
    65

    Re: Rams have holes all over the field

    A big WR for the Red Zone? Terrell Owens anyone


  5. #5
    RamsFanThruItAll!!! is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    66
    Rep Power
    0

    Re: Rams have holes all over the field

    Quote Originally Posted by txramsfan View Post
    A big WR for the Red Zone? Terrell Owens anyone

    I would say No. Owens is on the decline and we need a young WR that we can sign for multiple years. Signing TO for one year isnt gona help the rams all that much and next year just means hes one year older.

  6. #6
    RamOfDenmark is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Denmark
    Age
    30
    Posts
    1,071
    Rep Power
    22

    Re: Rams have holes all over the field

    * Next quarterback.
    No argument there. We need a franchise QB. Bad. We should look to take one in round 1 if we can find someone the staff is comfortable investing that much in for the future. Failing that at least grab someone in the 2nd if at all possible. We need someone we can develop and someone who can be the future leader of this team. A top QB would do more than any other addition to change this team into a winner.

    * Run-stuffing defensive tackle.
    A big, physical hard-working guy is what we need mainly. Can be had lower in the draft (we got Clifton Ryan in the 5th), doesn't need to be a superstar just a big solid blue-collar guy. However if we can't find a suitable QB in the 1st we could go for someone a little more special as our new DT - I'm thinking Ndamukong Suh is a pretty good candidate if we choose to go for a marquee player here, he could be worth a very high 1st rounder, but only if there is no QB we want there.

    * Outside linebackers.
    I agree with Jeff Gordon here, we can get by with a couple of no-names that Spags can develop. No need to spend a high draft pick here.

    * Pass rushing defensive end.
    True. Leonard Little is definitely closing in on his last year (though perhaps he could play 1 more). I wouldn't mind picking up a smaller guy, we've seen guys like Mathis & Dumervil be very effective in passing situations despite their size. Pick up a quick situational pass-rusher in the middle rounds (3-5) to plug this hole.

    * A big wide receiver.
    It is true that we need a #1 WR and it wouldn't hurt if he could play the jump-ball. We could go in several directions here: a) draft a guy in round 2 (assuming round 1 is where we go for a QB) b) keep our fingers crossed that at least one of our current guys will emerge or that we can play with several #2 WR's spread out instead of a clear-cut #1. Both could make sense, depending on how things develop from now on - wouldn't mind picking one in round 2 as things stand now, but I'd have to wait and see how well our guys finish out the season.

    * Big cornerback.
    Bartell has got pretty good size. But it would be nice with a 2nd guy > 6'0 at CB though, I'm tired of CBs built like Tye Hill who are instantly helpless against Fitzgerald & Boldin on any jump ball and in trouble on many shorter, physical routes like slants where small CBs get overwhelmed and outmuscled often. However I would have to rate CB as a lesser need than most of our other needs and we do have a bunch of young guys looking to prove themselves, someone could emerge from our current roster. I'd pick one up, but wouldn't start thinking about it until round 5 or so (could be later).

    * Second feature back.
    Again it would be nice with a situational player here (Jackson is obviously going to take the lion's share of the carries in any situation - we just need someone to spell him, 6-8 carries a game or something) - either a super shifty speed guy or a hard-nosed north & south runner. I would take a look around the middle rounds (3-5) for a backup RB to take a bit of the load off Jackson and present a different challenge to the defense. If your O-line is working well (and ours seems to be improving a lot from last year) - even rookie RB's can be reasonably effective right away.

    * Third-down back.
    I don't think we need a specific 3rd down back. Work on improving Steven Jackson's blocking skills, we're usually going to want him in there on 3rd down anyway - because he is so good catching balls out of the backfield. Failing that use our new backup RB who should also be able to play 3rd downs - don't look to add both a 2nd and 3rd RB behind Jackson in the same draft, we only need to spend one pick at the RB position when we have Jackson.

    * Pass catching tight end.
    I don't know, I probably wouldn't spend a draft pick here. Not unless we're talking 6th or 7th round. Bajema & Fells look reasonably effective, getting a top-notch TE is a luxury we can't afford right now. We can get by with less here. I wouldn't mind not picking up a TE in the next draft and keeping Bajema & Fells, cutting McMichael and auditioning some cheap free agents for the 3rd spot.

    I guess this turned into a longer piece about my perspective on the upcoming draft, oh well when you can't think about playoffs you need something else to look forward to right? Our needs in order of priority as I see them today:
    1. QB
    2. WR
    3. DE
    5. DT
    4. RB
    6. CB
    7. LB
    Last edited by RamOfDenmark; -11-23-2009 at 07:43 PM.

  7. #7
    RamsFanThruItAll!!! is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    66
    Rep Power
    0

    Re: Rams have holes all over the field


    I guess this turned into a longer piece about my perspective on the upcoming draft, oh well when you can't think about playoffs you need something else to look forward to right? Our needs in order of priority as I see them today:
    1. QB
    2. WR
    3. DE
    5. DT
    4. RB
    6. CB
    7. LB

    The Rams won't draft a QB first round thats obvious. Theres no qb's out there IMO that are gona come in and do any better then Bulger. We need to focus more on D. LB 7th round????? Thats pretty late. I dont really think we need to worry about recievers in this draft lets use our picks to make a the defense better and draft a young qb in the mid rounds that bulger can mentor.

  8. #8
    PeoriaRam's Avatar
    PeoriaRam is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    2,173
    Rep Power
    40

    Re: Rams have holes all over the field

    Quote Originally Posted by txramsfan View Post
    A big WR for the Red Zone? Terrell Owens anyone

    Does he fit any pillar?!

  9. #9
    C-Mob 71's Avatar
    C-Mob 71 is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    S. Illinois
    Posts
    1,506
    Rep Power
    45

    Re: Rams have holes all over the field

    Quote Originally Posted by RamsFanThruItAll!!! View Post
    The Rams won't draft a QB first round thats obvious. Theres no qb's out there IMO that are gona come in and do any better then Bulger.
    Not sure where you're getting that at... whether we like it or not, Bulger is done. It is time for Spags and Billy to put their stamp on this franchise and pick up their guy at the most important position on the field, QB.

    As Denmark was implying and as you boldly claimed, if they don't feel their QB is in this draft than yes we will work on the defense. However I still think it is far too premature and far out of our means as fans to determine if one of the several top QB's will not become a great player in this league.

    It is time to turn this thing around, and it all starts with the quarterback. I'm not saying our rookie is going to come in and light the world on fire and send us to the playoffs, but it is time to bring him in, groom him, let him learn the offense, and eventually make our team respectable again.

  10. #10
    RockinRam's Avatar
    RockinRam is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    TX
    Posts
    4,113
    Rep Power
    44

    Re: Rams have holes all over the field

    Quote Originally Posted by RamsFanThruItAll!!! View Post
    The Rams won't draft a QB first round thats obvious. Theres no qb's out there IMO that are gona come in and do any better then Bulger.

    Actually no, it's not obvious.

    Also, there are a few quarterbacks that have the potential to come in here, and do better than Bulger. Not saying they will, but they have the potential to.

    Clausen, Locker, maybe Bradford, maybe LeFevour and Mallet...

  11. #11
    tomahawk247's Avatar
    tomahawk247 is online now Registered User
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Essex, England
    Age
    28
    Posts
    4,758
    Rep Power
    57

    Re: Rams have holes all over the field

    I would keep Null, draft a quarterback after the first round and shop for a Ryan Fitzpatrick-type to manage the offense in the meantime.
    Ryan Fitzpatrick? No. NO. NOOOOOOOO THANK YOU!
    If we are going to have a interim QB it needs to be better than Fitzpatrick. Id take Bulger over Fitzpatrick.

  12. #12
    Mooselini's Avatar
    Mooselini is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    3,724
    Rep Power
    28

    Re: Rams have holes all over the field

    I agree. With all of these.

    But as of now, we need to fix two main holes. QB and DT. I can't see any QB coming out that is so dominant in their position we must pick them. In fact, the two dominant players at their positions are players we probably don't want (Tebow, Bradford).

    Suh is dominant in his position. Every year, we see a player who just plays better than any body else at that position. We saw this with Jake Long two years ago. The guy was an absolute monster and he is still playing at a high level. We need a run stuffing DT? Get Suh!
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
    Devaney, if you care about this team... fire the offensive coordinator!!!!

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 9
    Last Post: -06-19-2009, 09:04 AM
  2. Jim Thomas Live
    By RamWraith in forum RAM TALK
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: -11-23-2008, 08:57 PM
  3. Jim Thomas Live
    By RamWraith in forum RAM TALK
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: -04-09-2008, 09:53 PM
  4. Jim Thomas Live, Nov 20th--Lots of good stuff
    By RamWraith in forum RAM TALK
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: -11-21-2007, 03:18 PM
  5. Jim Thomas Live, November 6, 2007
    By RamWraith in forum RAM TALK
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: -11-06-2007, 06:41 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •