By Jeff Gordon
As we predicted, the Rams put up a good fight Sunday for coach Steve Spagnuolo.
But as we also predicted in this corner of cyberspace, they didn’t have enough to actually beat the Redskins in suburban Washington D.C.
The Rams fell to the Redskins in a 9-7 struggle, leaving them 0-2 this season and 5-29 during the last two-plus seasons.
“I am proud of how hard the team fought,” Spagnuolo told the Rams Radio Network. “We are disappointed. There are no moral victories in football.
“We were a play or two away. There are positives here, but there are details we have to iron or else we’ll continue giving games away.”
Rams fans did see some progress in Week 2 of the NFL season. Here were a few highlights:
Marc Bulger took another physical beating, but he threw the ball OK within the confines of the West Coast-style offense. He developed a nice connection with wide receiver Laurent Robinson and lofted a 2-yard TD pass to him. Under duress, he didn’t turn the ball over.
Running back Steven Jackson did some powerful north-south running against the physical Redskins defense, rushing for 104 yards. His 58-yard run set up the only Rams TD.
Receiver Keenan Burton made a couple of nice catches at a critical juncture of the game.
Newcomer LaJuan Ramsey was a disruptive force at defensive tackle.
Safety O.J. Atogwe forced a critical fumble late in the first half, keeping the Rams within range.
And now, here were the lowlights:
Donnie Avery’s red-zone fumble in the fourth quarter doomed the Rams. He spit the ball up after making a catch inside the Washington 10 and trying to fight for a first down.
During the first half, the offensive line folded like a $10 tent against the Redskins pass pressure.
The kick return game had little to offer.
The defense allowed Washington to run 20 more plays than the Rams ran. They didn’t stop the run consistently and they didn’t pressure Redskins quarterback Jason Campbell consistently, earning just one sack.