Results 1 to 4 of 4
  1. #1
    adarian_too's Avatar
    adarian_too is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    The Hollow
    Posts
    1,378
    Rep Power
    16

    And then there was the Special Teams ...

    Is it too early to look at the Special Teams' play this year? Yeah, maybe, but so what. Letís take a closer look at how far they have progressed this year anyway. Now that the 3rd game is in hand, some tendencies are emerging. Letís briefly recap.

    Against Denver Wilkins had 3 KRs downed in the endzone. One more against SF and then nada. Leg getting tired already? Maybe not ... he did get one or two (sorry, when you're about to spill a drink, you have a tendency to not pay as much attention to the screen as you probably should). Kick coverage was good as KRs were contained, gaps filled, and wedges decently approached.. Wilkens also made up for a missed gimme with a Ramsí record of six made. Turk did more than his share with 6 punts for over 50 yards per punt.

    Against SF, the importance of all around solid STs play was again emphasized. The one time OleMcDonald went upfield with a PR he set up the Ramsí 1st TD of the year. Of course all his pointing downfield to get would-be-tacklers out of the way went for naught as he tiptoed out of bounds in his usual Tiny Tim imitation. Of course he showed that long return was a fluke when he did his best Chicken-Man by failing to make a fair catch at the 17 near the end of the 1st half. The fact it was downed at the five led to the impressive kneel down by MB to end the half.

    To start the 2nd half, the dead rose once again to strike fear in all Rams fans as the SF KR turned the momentum around and quickly led to SF tying up the game. Then Wilkens decides that drama would be better served if he missed one before the 3rd qtr was over. Add to that, Gloverís encroachment at the start of the 4th and the Ramsí Special Teams were auditioning for parts in Return to the House of the Living Dead.

    And now we turn to game 3. Again McDon'tLetHimReturnaPR eschews a fair catch and instead was fortunate just to keep possession at the ten when he snagged it bouncing at his head and then got clocked which was a fumble in waiting. What wasnít avoidable was the Rams being backed up and forced to be conservative. This led to the Old Turk showing that he wasnít up to the occasion of reversing the field position disadvantage and showed that he could shank them with the best of LegDeadetta. Guess what? Yep. A short field for AZ and a TD in short order.

    And then ... what about that ending? Turk punts to a fair catch while the clock runs to zero. But a penalty on the D brings Rams' Special Team weirdness to a new level. Everybody knows that a game canít end on a defensive penalty. So onto the field the coaches run Ö swinging their arms in unison Ö decline the penalty. (Right?! Because accepting the penalty would mean that the game wouldnít be over?)

    Wait a minute. Apparently by rule, declining the penalty would allow AZ to free kick the ball from the spot of the fair catch. That would mean that Racker would have had a chance, however remote, to kick a field goal! Didnít Ligashesky, the Special Teamsí coordinator know this, as this was his coaching area of expertise? Did he run over to Linehan clamoring for the counter-intuitive move to accept the penalty? Shouldnít he have? It's not worth making a big deal of however, since everyone saw Linehan motion to decline the penalty from the sideline anyway.

    But the Rams did decide to overhaul the team. They decided to keep the inexperienced Ligashesky for some reason. At the same time, Ligashesky has remained enamored with McDoWantToRunAwayFromContact, with elder punter statesmen whose experience should tell them that if ever there was a moment to boom a punt it would be when the team is backed up against its own goal, and it took all preseason for them to decide that a handicapped JR Reed was a whole lot better than what they had all of last season (this was no news flash).

    The Rams Special Teams is just like a Jamie Curtis Halloween movie, they donít go away completely, they just wait to resurface like a bad horror movie sequel. For the moment, I'm prepared to give Liggy the benefit of doubt. If he adds a fu manchu to the buzz cut and drops OldMaidMcDonald I'll even refrain from referring to his crew as the SpecialEd Team the rest of the year.


  2. #2
    UtterBlitz's Avatar
    UtterBlitz is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    3,439
    Rep Power
    41

    Re: And then there was the Special Teams ...

    I thought we brought JR Reed in to return punts. Why is MacDonald still returning them?
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  3. #3
    adarian_too's Avatar
    adarian_too is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    The Hollow
    Posts
    1,378
    Rep Power
    16

    Re: And then there was the Special Teams ...

    Quote Originally Posted by UtterBlitz View Post
    I thought we brought JR Reed in to return punts. Why is MacDonald still returning them?
    I may be mistaken but I thought JR was brought in primarily to return KRs. Either way it doesn't answer why McDoodle was installed back there again.

    He never showed elusiveness. He makes poor decisions. He doesn't change direction at the "drop of a dime." All this was displayed before.

    I would have given Groce a chance to recapture some of that college magic before I would have put McDweedleDee back there again.

  4. #4
    adarian_too's Avatar
    adarian_too is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    The Hollow
    Posts
    1,378
    Rep Power
    16

    Re: And then there was the Special Teams ...

    Since no one pays attention to these articles anyway, I'm going to bury this controversial remark in here - Fire Ligashesky Today.

    As much as STs are a product of execution, they are also a product of attitude. After resurrecting the dead on kickoff coverage again, it's apparent that the message is not being communicated properly.

    He did nothing last year to really justify him being kept like Henry Ellard was. He clearly hasn't been able to emphasize that when the Rams are backed up to their endzone that would be the best time to boom a punt. Although Turk did get one out to the 35 from his own 15 the 1st one resulted in a short field for Det at the 50 and a TD.

    And bringing back McTarnishedArches to return punts? Well that's another failure in communication that is poised to rear its ugly head.

    I think Linehan needs to make an early statement about meaning business. Releasing LigamentTornSheSaid is on the quiet side of desperation.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •