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    Rams Notebook: At count of 10, Rams try to climb off mat

    By Bill Coats
    ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
    11/23/2006

    Considering what has occurred the past two seasons, perhaps Rams coach Scott Linehan should petition the NFL to permanently schedule his team for its bye week after nine games.

    Last year, when Linehan was Miami's offensive coordinator, the Dolphins were shut out at Cleveland 22-0 in their 10th game. It was Miami's third loss in a row.

    This past Sunday, Linehan's Rams also were blanked, 15-0 at Carolina, in their 10th outing. It extended the Rams' losing streak to five games.

    "It's not the first time I've had to deal with a tough loss or a tough stretch of losses," Linehan said. "You've got to deal with it and draw on those experiences."

    The Miami experience provides hope for the Rams (4-6), who will take on San Francisco (5-5) at noon Sunday at the Edward Jones Dome. The Dolphins knocked off Oakland the next week, igniting a season-closing six-game winning streak that nearly landed them in the playoffs.

    "That would be an analogy you could use, but the focus still has to be on this game, not what we can do in the next six games," Linehan said. "Our goal is to win one in a row. And then you can worry about what happens after that."

    The Rams haven't lost six consecutive games since 1997, when they slogged through an eight-game skid and finished 5-11. "It can happen in this league," Linehan said. "It can be a streaky league at times."

    Still, Linehan is hardly accepting the status quo. "I would be lying to you if I said I was happy about where we are," he said. "But I also know that it is a long season and playing well in a game like this, and hopefully winning the game, could springboard us back in the right direction."

    Asked to evaluate his first season as a head coach to this point, Linehan said, "I think there are some areas that we've hit our mark, hit our goal; certainly, we've been short in a number of areas," he said. "Any time you have an inconsistent period like we've had ... win or lose, you want to look and see how competitive you were, how close you were to winning those games.

    "I've been very happy with the fact that even though we didn't win, we were still putting ourselves in position at the end of the game to possibly win."

    Until the debacle at Carolina, that is.

    "My biggest disappointment was this last game," Linehan said. "But sometimes when you hit the bottom, it humbles you to the point where you just say, 'Hey, we'd better go to what we know works and not try this and that.' We've got to do the things we were doing well at the beginning of the year. ...

    "I think the bottom line is, if we go out and not worry about maybe what could happen and take action and go make it happen, we'll be a lot better off."

    Game is on TV

    The final tickets for Sunday's game were sold Wednesday, ensuring that it will be televised here (KTVI, Channel 2). The deadline for the local broadcast was moved up 24 hours because of today's holiday, meaning the sellout needed to be completed by noon Wednesday.

    The Monday night game Dec. 11 vs. Chicago also is a sellout. According to a team official, about 2,000 tickets remain for the two other remaining home games, Dec. 3 vs. Arizona and Dec. 24 vs. Washington. All the Rams' regular-season and postseason games have sold out since the team moved here in 1995.

    Ram-blings

    Kirkwood's Larry Frost is the Rams' high school coach of the week. The Pioneers qualified for their first state title game by turning back McCluer North 28-7. Kirkwood plays Raymore-Peculiar on Saturday for the Class 5 title. The Rams Foundation and NFL Charities will make a $1,000 donation to Kirkwood's football program. ... Guard Adam Timmerman (ribs) and fullback Paul Smith (hamstring) were listed as questionable on Wednesday's injury report. No other Rams were listed.


  2. #2
    laram0's Avatar
    laram0 is offline Superbowl MVP
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    Re: Rams Notebook: At count of 10, Rams try to climb off mat

    Linehan seems to think we've hit the bottom. I hope he's right because then there's nowhere to go but up. Meaning the Whiners are going down!

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