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  1. #1
    RamWraith's Avatar
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    Rams Team Report

    Sporting News
    Posted: January 15, 2008
    Jim Thomas
    For Sporting News

    PERSONNEL ANALYSIS

    Coach Scott Linehan's decision to give up play-calling duties could change the structure and emphasis of the Rams' offense. Several veterans grumbled privately over the course of the season that the Linehan offense was too simplistic, that their needed to be more creativity in the passing game and more plays over the middle. On the flip side of that equation, Rams coaches want more yards after the catch from their receiver corps, and say the lack of a true deep threat in '07 limited their ability to do more things.

    Although early indications during the season were that veteran WR Isaac Bruce might be released prior to the start of the trading and free-agency period, now it looks like Bruce might be asked to take a lesser role in the offense as the team's No. 3 receiver. If that's the case, however, who's No. 2? Drew Bennett certainly didn't do enough in his first year with St. Louis to show that he could handle moving up to the starting role. Undoubtedly, the Rams will be looking for help at receiver in free agency and/or the draft.

    It may still be a remote possibility, but K Jeff Wilkins at least is thinking about retirement after a season in which he missed eight field goals, matching his high as a Ram since the '99 season. Wilkins has been one of the league's most consistent placekickers over the past decade, and one of the best all-time when it comes to long-distance kicks. Sources say foot problems are one of the reasons that Wilkins, 35, is at least contemplating retirement. If that's the case, the Rams would add yet another position to their offseason wish-list, a position where it's easier said than done to find a reliable replacement.

    SCOUTING REPORT

    Despite some ups and downs replacing the injured Orlando Pace at left tackle, Alex Barron (6-7, 315) showed enough to make some wonder if it's time to keep him there fulltime. That may not happen, however, if Pace stays healthy. Barron can be a special player, but needs to add strength and about 15 pounds of bulk. Barron doesn't like to lift weights, so he needs to be pushed there. He remains immature at times and his work ethic at times is questionable. Barron gets psyched up for good players, and played well against the likes of Julius Peppers and John Abraham. But he must take that approach week in and week out.

    YOUTH MOVEMENT

    Rookie free-agent LB Quinton Culberson showed enough in the regular-season finale against Arizona, with 11 tackles and a forced fumble, that he has forced himself onto the radar for the '08 season. Culberson had played fewer than a dozen snaps from scrimmage until then. Culberson has good size and striking ability, is a collision tackler and seems to have natural instincts for flowing to the ball. What he lacks is ideal speed for linebacker. In the passing game, Culberson still needs to work on his drops, recognition and overall coverage skills. And he still needs to learn some of the nuances and finer points of the complex system of coordinator Jim Haslett. At worst, Culberson has shown he can be a plus in short-yardage and goal-line situations. And he is an option as a two-down player at strongside and middle linebacker.


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    Re: Rams Team Report

    Rams coaches want more yards after the catch from their receiver corps,
    BS Linehan routes are why we get no RAC. Most of them are ran to the sideline and are come back routes. What happed to the 20 yard and the deep dig route, what Bruce and Holt forgot how to run the Rams are famous for.

    Although early indications during the season were that veteran WR Isaac Bruce might be released prior to the start of the trading and free-agency period, now it looks like Bruce might be asked to take a lesser role in the offense as the team's No. 3 receiver.
    Hmmm should have told him that last year and signed Curtis as the number two and we would have had a proven deep threat.

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    Re: Rams Team Report

    Alex Barron doesn't like to lift weights???? If this guy gained some strength and cut down on the false starts he would be one of the best tackles in the NFL. Which in the long run would put more cash in his pocket. Is he just plain lazy or what?

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    Re: Rams Team Report

    Quote Originally Posted by laram0 View Post
    Alex Barron doesn't like to lift weights???? If this guy gained some strength and cut down on the false starts he would be one of the best tackles in the NFL. Which in the long run would put more cash in his pocket. Is he just plain lazy or what?
    That question is what dropped him in the '05 draft. This time 3 years ago, he was the top OT, far and away. As time drew closer, that "lazy" question kept coming up. It cost him money and draft spot (J. Brown went to the Saints ahead of him). Looks like that was a valid question then; to which we still don't have the answer we want.
    "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

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    Re: Rams Team Report

    Jumping offsides is a lack of concentration or complete inability to understand snap counts- both don't bode well for him correcting the problem. I think the issues with Incognito are steroid related- it stinks of roid rage to me- but that's just my opinion.

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    Re: Rams Team Report

    Quote Originally Posted by laram0 View Post
    Alex Barron doesn't like to lift weights???? If this guy gained some strength and cut down on the false starts he would be one of the best tackles in the NFL. Which in the long run would put more cash in his pocket. Is he just plain lazy or what?
    doesn't like to lift weights,hey Alex, get your lazy a** in the weight room,when you are done playing football you can sit on your butt and be lazy and get fat,but for now lifting weights is part of your job,so start lifting.

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    Re: Rams Team Report

    Quote Originally Posted by jkramsfan View Post
    doesn't like to lift weights,hey Alex, get your lazy a** in the weight room,when you are done playing football you can sit on your butt and be lazy and get fat,but for now lifting weights is part of your job,so start lifting.

    I think when he came to the NFL, his mentor was Jimmy Kennedy

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    Re: Rams Team Report

    The Rams need to become the team known in the league as the place where character matters. Laziness, and apathy can't be tolerated. The Pats are a good example. I will bet you that Barron, if he had been mistakenly taken by the Pats in the draft, would not be a Pat now. Either that or his butt would have been whooped by his teammates and he would be an all-pro with them. The Pats have that rep. No one dogs it there.

    The Rams need to stop putting up with mediocrity in character and start collecting "over-achievers". Stop falling in love with tempermental sports cars and get a few work trucks.

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    Re: Rams Team Report

    The false starts could also be coming from insecurity (knowing that these other guys have put in more work in the weight room). I don't exactly enjoy lifting weights, but you'd better believe I'd be in there working out like a madman if I was an offensive lineman in the NFL.

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