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  1. #1
    Tampa_Ram's Avatar
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    Unhappy The sky is falling

    The sky is falling on Rams Nation
    By Jeff Gordon
    STLTODAY.COM SPORTS COLUMNIST
    12/31/2007

    Columnist Jeff Gordon
    (E-mail a "Letter to Gordo")


    So let’s sum up the state of the Rams franchise on the morning after the final game of the 2007 regular season:

    Primary owner Georgia Frontiere is hospitalized with a serious medical problem. Her heir apparent, Chip Rosenbloom, has just cursory knowledge of the NFL. He also has very strong ties to Southern California.

    Team president, John Shaw, operates the team by remote control from Los Angeles. With Georgia ailing, Shaw is uncertain how much longer he wants his gig.

    Football czar Jay Zygmunt appears positioned to consolidate his power, not lose it. P-D columnist Bryan Burwell reports that scouting guru Tony Softli could get the axe in a faux “housecleaning.”

    Head coach Scott Linehan has shown no indication he can lead an NFL team into the playoffs. Skepticism abounds, among media types, fans and, yes, the players themselves. Marc Bulger rolled his eyes at him on the sideline. Torry Holt screamed at him. That sums up the locker room sentiment.

    Although the team can blame its 3-13 finish on massive injury problems, plenty of young veterans took a backward slide during the team’s collapse. What do the Rams have, really, in guys like Alex Barron, Claude Wroten, Dominique Byrd, Joe Klopfenstein and Marques Hagans?


    Then there is the stadium issue. As more teams get state-of-the-art facilities, the Edward Jones Dome continues to sink in the rankings of NFL venues. Soon, the facility here will need more than cosmetic upgrades.

    In time, The Ed will need replacing. As long as Los Angeles is without a NFL franchise, any owner seeking better stadiums will have tremendous leverage.

    Then there is the issue of the St. Louis marketplace and the local economy. Are there enough disposable dollars in this region to support three pro sports franchises at premium prices?

    When a franchise goes bad, as the Blues did, it pays big time. The erosion of the Rams’ fan base will continue in the wake of the ‘07 fiasco.

    Unless this franchise makes wholesale improvements during the offseason -– which nobody anticipates -– PSL owners and luxury suite renters will bail in droves. The Rams will need lots of help from visiting fans to sell out games.

    When you connect all these dots, the picture is not pretty.

    During a 2 ½-hour live chat with Rams fans Sunday night, your cyber-correspondent tried to counsel distraught STLtoday.com visitors. But given all these circumstances, the near-term and long-term prognosis for the Rams in St. Louis is not good.

    What could save the Rams?

    A white knight ownership group -– like the Dave Checketts/Blues group, only with far more capital -– could swoop in and rescue the operation. Rams fans wish Stan Kroenke would be that guy, since he has the resources and smarts to make it happen.

    But Stan is committed to his Colorado enterprises and Georgia may be committed to keeping the team within her family. So the likelihood of seeing a Blues-caliber revival any time soon is not good.

    It is far easier to project a total disaster here.

    Another dreadful season with Linehan playing out the string as a lame-duck coach . . . a precipitous decline in attendance . . . key Rams bailing via free agency . . . the revised Rams ownership doubting the viability of St. Louis as a long-range NFL market . . . public rejection of future stadium demands . . . heated overtures from LA for the franchise to return home . . . yes, it’s pretty easy to get into Chicken Little mode while assessing the state of the former World Champions.

    The Dolphins stink, but billionaire Wayne Huizenga hired Bill Parcells to clean things up.

    The Falcons stink, but billionaire Arthur Blank is committed to making things right again.

    It all starts at the top of the organizational chart. And what’s at the top of the Rams organizational chart right now is a giant question mark.

    Have a nice New Year, Ramfan.


  2. #2
    Mooselini's Avatar
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    Re: The sky is falling

    Wow this is scary. We dont have alot of money to save our team with its players as it is.

    Now we have to save the Edwards Jones Dome. I say every person on this board buys 5 Jerseys each. haha, that should give the company some money hah.

  3. #3
    fearsome foursome is offline Registered User
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    Re: The sky is falling

    Of course, if the Rams moved back to LA, would it really be THAT bad. I liked the LA Rams.

  4. #4
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    Re: The sky is falling

    i wouldnt be surprised if we moved back to LA if you look at the big picture FA would rather be big time Franchise stars in LA California not St. Louis Missouri.

  5. #5
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    Re: The sky is falling

    Oh noes!

    Anguish, misery and despair.

    So much for the cyclical nature of fortune in the NFL.

    It wouldn't surprise me to see us move, if only because of the ridiculously fickle nature of support in St Louis. Strange when your local support is determined by how many games you won the season before.

  6. #6
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    Re: The sky is falling

    Quote Originally Posted by Mooselini View Post
    Wow this is scary. We dont have alot of money to save our team with its players as it is.

    Now we have to save the Edwards Jones Dome. I say every person on this board buys 5 Jerseys each. haha, that should give the company some money hah.
    I think buying jerseys will make the jersey manufacturers some money, but I don't think the Rams get any.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  7. #7
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    Re: The sky is falling

    Football czar Jay Zygmunt appears positioned to consolidate his power, not lose it. P-D columnist Bryan Burwell reports that scouting guru Tony Softli could get the axe in a faux “housecleaning.”
    This would shock me, I'm not buying.

    Although the team can blame its 3-13 finish on massive injury problems, plenty of young veterans took a backward slide during the team’s collapse. What do the Rams have, really, in guys like Alex Barron, Claude Wroten, Dominique Byrd, Joe Klopfenstein and Marques Hagans?
    AC,Hill,Ryan,Setterstrom,Barron,BL,Cog,Wade, we have some young guns

  8. #8
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    Re: The sky is falling

    I guess my "gloom, dispair, and agony on me" post was more relevant than I though.

  9. #9
    Truth's Avatar
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    Re: The sky is falling

    Actually, where the franchise is located makes little difference to me. What concerns me is the ownership issue. If we contibnue to have ownership that wants to own an NFL team for the status instead of a burning desire to win and be the best, we can flounder in St louis or L.A. The location won't make any difference.

    No new ownership = Same old problems
    Last edited by Truth; -01-17-2008 at 12:05 PM.
    That's my story, and I'm sticking to it!!

  10. #10
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    Unhappy Re: The sky is falling

    Quote Originally Posted by Rambos View Post
    This would shock me, I'm not buying.



    AC,Hill,Ryan,Setterstrom,Barron,BL,Cog,Wade, we have some young guns
    I admire your optimism, but half this arsenal is a bunch of pop-guns.

  11. #11
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    Re: The sky is falling

    Quote Originally Posted by Truth View Post
    Actually, where the franchise is located makes little difference to me. What concerns me is the ownership issue. If we contibnue to have ownership that wants to own an NFL team for the status instead of a burning desire to win and be the best, we can flounder in St louis or L.A. The location won't make any difference.

    No new ownership = Same old problems
    I agree completely.

  12. #12
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    Re: The sky is falling

    Quote Originally Posted by 39thebeast View Post
    i wouldnt be surprised if we moved back to LA if you look at the big picture FA would rather be big time Franchise stars in LA California not St. Louis Missouri.
    Is that what they're saying over at www.whatbigtimefranchisefreeagentsthink.com?
    "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

  13. #13
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    Re: The sky is falling

    Your link isn't working

  14. #14
    Truth's Avatar
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    Re: The sky is falling

    Quote Originally Posted by 39thebeast View Post
    i wouldnt be surprised if we moved back to LA if you look at the big picture FA would rather be big time Franchise stars in LA California not St. Louis Missouri.

    If you win, they will come.

    For that matter (for the most part)...

    If you pay, they will come.
    That's my story, and I'm sticking to it!!

  15. #15
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    Re: The sky is falling

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison View Post
    Is that what they're saying over at www.whatbigtimefranchisefreeagentsthink.com?
    Hub, I know I'm going to rub some people the wrong way, But hell yea that's what there saying. Come on California vs. Missouri.

    Anyway, it is a sad state of affairs that the Rams have fallen into. And it will take a complete shake up to fix this organization. My only hope is that it's sooner rather than later.

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