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Tuesday, August 30, 2005
- I havenít seen the tape yet, but left tackle Orlando Pace looks absolutely lights out right now. I made it a point on one drive to focus my binoculars on the big fella and he certainly didnít disappoint. He looks like he is in great shape; he understands the game better than ever and the mean streak is there. One of my favorite moments of the game came after Pace was penalized for a late hit on the Detroit sideline. Nearly every Lion rushed toward Pace, but when they got close, they decided not to retaliate. No matter how big you are, when you are surrounded by about 40 guys looking to retaliate and they all back down, thatís respect.
- Marc Bulger, aside from the one mistake interception, looks like he is rounding into top form just in time for the regular season. He was sharp with his throws, getting rid of it quickly and almost always on target. Between his second quarter performance last week and his total work last night, Bulger could make the leap into the top tier of quarterbacks in the league sooner than later.
- Itís no coincidence that the Rams got off to a fast start with running back Steven Jackson carrying most of the load. Jacksonís big run set the tone for the offense and gave confidence to the offensive line and the quarterback.
- Itís hard to find much wrong with the teamís performance against the Lions, so letís continue with the praise.
- Pace wasnít the only strong performance on the offensive line Monday night. Adam Timmerman and Tom NŁtten looked good in their first go around at the guard spots for this year. Andy McCollum remains solid in the middle and Rex Tucker handled himself well on the right side. Tucker is a pretty good run blocker and if his pass blocking comes around, he could be a nice addition on the right side. If Pace continues to dominate the left side, it would allow the Rams to give Tucker help using tight ends and fullbacks. A little continuity and chemistry can go a long way for this group.
- The defense played well pretty much all night, but Iím not sure if there was a group more impressive than the defensive line. It seemed as though Jimmy Kennedy spent all night in the Lionsí back field and Damione Lewis was solid, too.
- Anthony Hargrove and Brandon Green are waging quite a battle for the starting end spot opposite Leonard Little. Hargrove was downright disruptive in the first half and Green made another nice sack. Green has a sack in every game in the preseason and continues to be one of this teamís most pleasant surprises.
- Chris Claiborne gets off blocks better than any linebacker that was with this team last year. Claiborne has the potential to be a monster against the run because of his size and strength. If you donít believe me, ask Kevin Jones about Claiborneís sack.
I like Waggoner's updates......but it's easy to see who signs his paycheck."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