Wagoner's Sunday Night Notes
Sunday, November 20, 2005
- Well, it doesn't get much uglier than that. You name it and if it was bad, it probably happened to the Rams on Sunday. I didn't think it could get much worse than losing to San Francisco in the season opener, but at least that game was on the road.
- Kurt Warner looked good in his return and it was nice to see an ovation from the fans of St. Louis. He did a lot for this town. Unfortunately for the fans and the Rams, he did a lot TO this town today. Warner absolutely carved up the Rams' secondary Sunday to the tune of 285 yards and three touchdowns. He still picks up the blitzes well and when he gets rid of the ball as quickly as he did today, he will always have success.
- Anquan Boldin and Larry Fitzgerald are excellent up and coming receivers in this league, but let's be honest, they are not Jerry Rice and John Taylor in their prime. Seriously, they aren't, they just played them on T.V. today.
- It was a rough first start for rookie cornerback Ron Bartell and things got worse when DeJuan Groce injured his neck early in the game. Although the coverage was seriously lacking, the coverages seemed to be off too. Huge cushions combined with outside leverage equals easy slants and little chance for the blitz to get much of anything done against Warner.
- Speaking of the defensive line, it was disappointing to see such little pressure on Warner. It's obvious when you get in his face he will make mistakes, but on those occasions when he did have a five or seven step drop, it was rare to see a Ram in his face.
- Arizona actually had some success running the ball against the Rams. That's the first time the Cardinals have been able to say that all year and says all you need to know about the way this team is stopping the run right now.
- Speaking of running games, the Rams is missing right now. Sure, Arizona loaded the box with eight defenders, but it's not like it's impossible to run the ball against a team with eight in the box. Earlier this week, coach Joe Vitt said the Rams would try to get Steven Jackson running downhill more with his shoulders square to the line of scrimmage. Yet, there he was Sunday, running on sweeps and tosses, including a third and short that turned into disaster when he lost a fumble. Twelve carries for 6 yards is a sad state of affairs for a running game that seemed like it was breaking out. It's a slap in the face to the Rams offense that the Cardinals challenged the Rams to beat them in the air. For a team like St. Louis that has made its living beating teams aerially, that had to be a surprise. Obviously, it was.
- The blame for lack of rushing productivity can't all fall on Jackson, though. In fact, there were few times where he had much of a chance to do anything at all. No, it all starts up front and the Rams had nothing going there. There was no push, no seams and certainly no holes. A very disappointing performance for this offensive line.
- You have to hope quarterback Marc Bulger is OK. He was playing well when he suffered a concussion and shoulder injury in the third quarter. Bulger is the key to this offense and without him, things are much more difficult. Tip of the cap to Jamie Martin, though, he did what he could in difficult circumstances and played well.
- Nice to see Isaac Bruce get back in the action on that beautiful touchdown pass. Torry Holt and Kevin Curtis also looked good.
- So, did they actually hand Arizona safety Adrian Wilson his ticket to the Pro Bowl when he walked off the field or did they wait? Wilson was so dominant that he might have punched his ticket today.
- The penalties are past the point of ridiculous. There are no adjectives to describe how the Rams continue to find ways to come up with bad penalties at the most inopportune times.
- Best wishes to Blaine Saipaia, who it appears will have to spend the night in the hospital. Blaine is a good guy and you never want to see anyone leave with a serious injury. It sounds like it's just a concussion, but he was barely moving when he got on the cart to leave.
- This season is in grave danger. In fact, any playoff hopes this team had are probably gone. The Rams will likely have to run the table to get in the playoffs. Fact is, there are no games that this team plays that can be marked as W's before the game. This was probably one that everyone had pegged for a win and look what happened. Stranger things have happened than the Rams running the table and making the playoffs, but I can't think of many.
- Don't blame the blue pants for the loss, but the Rams never play well in them.
Re: Wagoner's Sunday Night Notes
SF isnt that bad this year guys and gals! We better have our game faces on when we play them or we will be 0-2 this year against them!