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  1. #1
    RamWraith's Avatar
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    What They've Been Up To: Rams

    Brad Keller
    CardinalInsider.com
    Jul 15, 2006

    The St. Louis Rams have had a turbulent off-season. They let former coach Mike Martz go and hired Miami offensive coordinator Scott Linehan. Their front office is in upheaval. Marshall Faulk continues to mull retirement. I’m sure that they, like many teams in the NFL (and the rest of us fans), can’t wait for the season to start.

    Free Agent Acquisitions/Losses:

    They’ve added a considerable number of defensive players and their two key losses were all-world safety Adam Archuleta and defensive tackle Damoine Lewis.

    To replace the players they lost, they added SS Corey Chavious from the Vikings, LB Will Witherspoon of the Panthers, and DT La’Roi Glover of the Cowboys. Chavious is a well respected, solid player, but he certainly doesn’t have the talent or reputation of the departed Archuleta. Glover is a fine addition to the team, since he possesses both the pass rushing and run stopping skills to succeed in any scheme. However, it’s been some time since he was a “game breaker” at the position, and he may only be running on fumes and reputation at this point. The marquee addition of the off-season was Witherspoon. Witherspoon is a Pro Bowl caliber player at the position that is a sure tackler and always seems to be around the ball. Of the players the Panthers lost this season, I’d say they’d most like to have Witherspoon back.

    They also added depth to several positions in QB Gus Ferotte, DB Fahir Brown, and RB Paul Smith. There’s also likely to be a changing of the guard at punter, with the acquisition of Miami’s Matt Turk.

    The biggest off-season move, though, may prove to be drafting Clemson’s Tye Hill in the first round of the 2006 NFL Draft. Hill possesses rare speed and ball skills at the position and may prove to be the salve that the Rams have been missing since they lost Aneas Williams and Grant Wistrom.

    What to Expect This Season:

    It’s hard to know what to expect from the Rams this year. They finished 2005 at a disappointing 6-10. Deposed coach Mike Martz was absent for part of the season. They brought in Linehan and added former Saints coach Jim Haslett to be defensive coordinator. No one in their right mind would say that the Rams don’t have a great deal of talent on the roster that belies their 6-10 2005 record. It seems to me, though, that they might need to take a step back record-wise to take a step forward.

    Linehan has made it very clear this off-season that he intends to change the personality and mindset of the St. Louis Rams. He intends to oversee a team that runs the ball, plays defense, and takes care of the football. However, under the Martz regime, the Rams were known has a high-octane pass-oriented offense that played just enough defense to get by and was careless with the football. While it may be easier to change the attitude of the players under your employ than one might think, it’s considerably more difficult to change a talent base that was constructed with a certain philosophy in mind.


    While the Rams have talent, they’ll hardly be miscast by anyone who follows football as a defensive team that runs a smash-mouth offensive attack and tries to eliminate mistakes. From a personnel standpoint, they’ll be hard pressed to execute the planned change in their identity, even if Marshall Faulk retires and Steven Jackson assumes the “battering ram” role of the featured back in a physically oriented offense.


    It will take more than good coaching and resolve to turn the tides for the Rams. They’ll most likely struggle through this season with their current personnel in the new scheme, but come back strong next season.


  2. #2
    general counsel's Avatar
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    Re: What They've Been Up To: Rams

    How in the world can anyone take an article/journalist seriously who writes that our two key losses were archuleta and damione lewis. Did the guy even watch one ram game last year? The key loss was ryan pickett, end of story. Kennedy may step up and replace the production, but to compare the production last year of arch and lewis to pickett is simply a moronic statement.

    ramming speed to all

    general counsel


  3. #3
    RamWraith's Avatar
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    Re: What They've Been Up To: Rams

    I agree to certain extent GC. However when talking about key loses I can only assume they are talking about key starters, as we know little about the people that came in to repalce them and how they are going to perform on this team. I do not really believe we upgraded the loses of Arch and Pickett/Lewis with Chavous and Glover. Both are gettting older and slower.

    I agree not mentioning Pickett in those same terms as Arch and Lewis is a crime, I do agree losing them is going to hurt. It would have been fun to watch them in Haslett's defense instead of Vanilla Marmilades. I really wish Haslett would have came a year sooner.

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    Re: What They've Been Up To: Rams

    All I want to say about the journalisitic merit of this article is this:-

    "....all world safety Adam Archuleta..."

    Oh dear.

  5. #5
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    Re: What They've Been Up To: Rams

    I think GC is right about the writer, raith. You're giving the writer too much credit. Your point is well taken and correct, but I dont think the writer had a clue about how poorly those 2 had done.

  6. #6
    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: What They've Been Up To: Rams

    They’ve added a considerable number of defensive players and their two key losses were all-world safety Adam Archuleta and defensive tackle Damoine Lewis.
    Wow, it was really tempting to just stop reading after that.

    Damione Lewis a key loss? When your pass rushing tackle manages only one sack on the year and averages less than 0.2 a game, then I really don't consider him a key loss at all. I'll give him Arch because that's certainly debatable, but I really don't see Lewis in that category at all.


    Quote Originally Posted by RamWraith
    I do not really believe we upgraded the loses of Arch and Pickett/Lewis with Chavous and Glover. Both are gettting older and slower.
    We weren't trying to upgrade Pickett's nose tackle position with Glover. Glover's an upgrade of Lewis since he's a pass rushing defensive end. Kennedy looks to be Pickett's replacement, whether you consider that good or bad is up to you, but I'm just trying to clear up what's what.

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    Re: What They've Been Up To: Rams

    I have a much better feeling about this team than I did last season. I don't think they'll drudge and struggle through this season at all. We'll see something good this year.

  8. #8
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    Re: What They've Been Up To: Rams

    come on the guy was a cardninal beat writer go figure

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