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Thread: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    We won't know if Long is going to be healthy enough in his rehab to start the season or not until well after the draft. Barksdale was decent in run blocking but below average in pass protection. Say we resign Saffold is he going to finally play a full season and be healthy? Barrett Jones has more questions marks than any of the Rams I've listed so far.

    Stacy only managed 3.9 ypc and we've gone over extensively the amount of times Sam and Kellen were pressured. I see a lot of people content to roll the dice with Jake Long being ready to start the season. To roll the dice with Barrett Jones, or Tim Barnes, being able to step up. To roll the dice with Saffold finally staying healthy.

    I don't pretend to know what Snead and Fisher will do in the draft and free agency. But a mostly status quo approach to the OLine scares me. We've had bad lines for so long that a mediocre line seems to have excited some people.
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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey View Post
    We won't know if Long is going to be healthy enough in his rehab to start the season or not until well after the draft. Barksdale was decent in run blocking but below average in pass protection. Say we resign Saffold is he going to finally play a full season and be healthy? Barrett Jones has more questions marks than any of the Rams I've listed so far.

    Stacy only managed 3.9 ypc and we've gone over extensively the amount of times Sam and Kellen were pressured. I see a lot of people content to roll the dice with Jake Long being ready to start the season. To roll the dice with Barrett Jones, or Tim Barnes, being able to step up. To roll the dice with Saffold finally staying healthy.

    I don't pretend to know what Snead and Fisher will do in the draft and free agency. But a mostly status quo approach to the OLine scares me. We've had bad lines for so long that a mediocre line seems to have excited some people.
    By the time of the draft Jake Long will already be almost four months into his recovery, so by then the Rams would know if there were any major complications preventing him from healing on time (most complications occur a month or two after the surgery date). As for Saffold, he's played in 2 less games the past three years than Sam Bradford yet we don't hear people calling for Sam to be replaced. Sam has played in 33 of 48 games since 2010, plus he's still recovering from an ACL injury, so by your reasoning does that mean the Rams should draft a QB in the 1st round?

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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vinnie25 View Post
    By the time of the draft Jake Long will already be almost four months into his recovery, so by then the Rams would know if there were any major complications preventing him from healing on time (most complications occur a month or two after the surgery date). As for Saffold, he's played in 2 less games the past three years than Sam Bradford yet we don't hear people calling for Sam to be replaced. Sam has played in 33 of 48 games since 2010, plus he's still recovering from an ACL injury, so by your reasoning does that mean the Rams should draft a QB in the 1st round?
    No but I'm game for them taking both a Guard, which is what Saffold will be kept to play most likely, and QB in the 2nd or 3rd. And yes Long will be into post surgery recovery but theres a lot of time for a big man to have problems with his recovery. I like Sam and don't want to turn this into yet another replace the QB thread, but we all know a young QB to back him and and develop behind him. If we can grab Garapalo or somebody else in the 2nd or 3rd to sit a year or two behind Sam then possibly replace him would be a great way to go.

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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    You can beg to differ all you want, but it's an accurate statement.

    It's supported by the fact that you snipped out the very detailed part of my post where I spoke specifically about the questionable and weak areas of the line, and instead just decided to fall back on the broad platitudes about how they performed good enough last year so it stands to reason they'll be good enough this year.

    Let's look at some of the things you brought up.

    Starting with the claim that the line was good because Stacy nearly hit 1,000 yards, what usually goes unmentioned is that he did it averaging 3.9 yards a carry, and in fact that dropped to a mere 3.6 yards per carry after the bye. Those are poor numbers for a team striving to feature a good dose of the run.

    Seattle may have been caught off guard by the Rams' first Bradford-less appearance and Stacy as a feature back in the middle of the year, but they certainly weren't when they faced the Rams again to end the season. So unless you think they're suddenly going to forget about him and get caught off guard again in 2014, I wouldn't be too confident in the Rams repeating the Week 8 production without improving their personnel up front.

    Next, while Bradford, Stacy, and the Rams' offense were playing some of their best football before he got hurt, it happened against two of the worst teams in the league (Houston and Jacksonville). When asked to do it against a playoff caliber team in Carolina, the Rams put up a measly 15 points and Stacy was largely shut down (3.1 ypc total, 2.0 when you take away his one long run).

    Beating up bad teams shouldn't be an issue; if we want to get over this 7-9 hump, the Rams are going to need to do better than they did in 2013, both in opening up holes for Stacy and in protecting Bradford.

    I brought this up in another thread, but according to Pro Football Focus, of the 41 quarterbacks who played at least 25% of their team's snaps this season, Sam ranked a very average 22nd in pressure percentage (or percentage of snaps under pressure) with 36.3%. That percentage is actually worse than what they had recorded for Sam's 2011 season under McDaniels, though his sack % from 2011 was much higher.

    Think it was better with Clemens and the focus on the running game? Not really. According to PFF, Clemens was pressured on 36.4% of his dropbacks, one tenth of a percent more than Sam. The numbers suggest the pressure didn't vanish or significantly diminish when the Rams shifted to a power running focus for the rest of the season.

    So no, those making plays for Jake Matthews (or Greg Robinson if you prefer) haven't forgotten anything. We're just willing to give more than a cursory look into what was actually accomplished in 2013 behind this offensive line rather than just brush it under the rug of "Well it was good enough!" Because it wasn't.
    I think Jeff Fisher is very happy with the production he got from his rookie 5th rounder, in spite of his "poor numbers".

    Let me also say that while 3.9 yards per carry is not exactly setting the world on fire, it does mean a 1st down after every 3 carries. So I wouldn't necessarily call them "poor numbers".

    Maybe not ideal, but certainly not poor IMO, particularly since Stacy is a move the chains type of back anyway.

    Secondly, in spite of the horrible season Houston had, they were still ranked 7th in overall defense. Stacy had a pretty good game against them, but he was just beginning to hit his stride.

    After a nondescript game against the 2nd ranked overall defense in Carolina, he posted back to back 100 plus yard performances against Seattle and Tennessee.

    Other notable performances include the Bears game, which likely would've been his finest, were it not for injury.

    He totaled 12 carries for 87 yards while his replacement (Bennie Cunningham) went over 100 yards in relief.

    Stacy shredded New Orleans 4th ranked defense for 133 yards and pounded Tampa Bay for 104 more yards albeit on 33 carries.

    All in all, that appears to be a pretty good rookie season if you ask me, and for some strange reason I'll bet Jeff Fisher agrees.

    As for Sam Bradford, had he not been playing his best football as a Ram just prior to his injury, this is likely a discussion about which QB to take with the 2nd pick. And though it appears difficult for you to get your head around, the offensive line is at least partially responsible. You can throw out all the stats in the world, but you still can not fully account for his transformation without acknowledging the Oline.

    There is simply no disputing that as far as I'm concerned.

    There's also no disputing that we all have our own opinions, sometimes we agree and sometimes we don't.

    I think we all agree the Oline is a concern at this point, but I'm willing to wait until we get through free agency before declaring it a state of emergency.
    Last edited by Fortuninerhater; -02-11-2014 at 02:43 AM.
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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey View Post
    No but I'm game for them taking both a Guard, which is what Saffold will be kept to play most likely, and QB in the 2nd or 3rd. And yes Long will be into post surgery recovery but theres a lot of time for a big man to have problems with his recovery. I like Sam and don't want to turn this into yet another replace the QB thread, but we all know a young QB to back him and and develop behind him. If we can grab Garapalo or somebody else in the 2nd or 3rd to sit a year or two behind Sam then possibly replace him would be a great way to go.
    Like I said earlier it's a big IF so I don't want to get too much into it, and all of this will be moot anyways if the Rams don't get the extra 1st rounder from the Browns. Putting my infatuation with Clowney to the side, I do agree that fixing the line makes the most sense, and if we were able to trade down and still select Matthews or Robinson I'd be ecstatic. Honestly, if the Rams made the trade with the Browns (there goes that IF again lol) and they selected Matthews at 4, I'd still hope that Saffold is re-signed because I know how much of a difference he made to our running game once he moved to Guard. Actually, I'm starting to rethink this whole all-defensive 1st round strategy

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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vinnie25 View Post
    Actually, I'm starting to rethink this whole all-defensive 1st round strategy
    It doesn't have to be an all or nothing approach.

    I'd be happy with this first round...

    1.4 Greg Robinson/Jake Matthews
    1.13 Darqueze Dennard
    1.26 Calvin Pryor

    Not sure Pryor falls to 26, but this 1st round gives us a top OT prospect to shore the line and two top secondary prospects to bolster the back-end.

    There, we both win!!
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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    If we were able to wrangle both 4 and 26 from the Browns this year, not convinced there's a chance it happens, but I'd prefer to go something like this...

    4 Matthews
    13 Dix
    26 Jordan Matthews

    Help for the oline, a fs and a wr who can actually catch the ball regularly.

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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey View Post
    a wr who can actually catch the ball regularly.
    Stedman's feelings are going to be hurt if he sees this.

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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vinnie25 View Post
    As for Saffold, he's played in 2 less games the past three years than Sam Bradford yet we don't hear people calling for Sam to be replaced.
    Seriously? You haven't seen people calling for Sam to be replaced?

    But that is besides the point -- no one is saying that Saffold should be "replaced." They are saying that even if we resign him that there are questions about his health. That's true. As it is with Long. As as it is with Sam.

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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    Quote Originally Posted by FestusRam View Post
    Stedman's feelings are going to be hurt if he sees this.
    He's the only one with a right to be hurt about my statement.
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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey View Post
    We won't know if Long is going to be healthy enough in his rehab to start the season or not until well after the draft. Barksdale was decent in run blocking but below average in pass protection. Say we resign Saffold is he going to finally play a full season and be healthy? Barrett Jones has more questions marks than any of the Rams I've listed so far.

    Stacy only managed 3.9 ypc and we've gone over extensively the amount of times Sam and Kellen were pressured. I see a lot of people content to roll the dice with Jake Long being ready to start the season. To roll the dice with Barrett Jones, or Tim Barnes, being able to step up. To roll the dice with Saffold finally staying healthy.

    I don't pretend to know what Snead and Fisher will do in the draft and free agency. But a mostly status quo approach to the OLine scares me. We've had bad lines for so long that a mediocre line seems to have excited some people.
    And is that really bad, good or avg? Frank Gore who ran behind one of the best lines avg. 4.1 last year. Steven Jackson avg, 4.2 in his career so what are we talking about here, people act as if that is some how bad.

    We gone over how bad our QB has been pressured? According to Football Outsiders exclusive statistics. Our O line ranked 14th in pass protection in 2013, they ranked us 28th in 2011, that is a huge improvement. They also had us 30th in run blocking in 2011.

    Again some want to make claims under Les and Fisher we have not improved our O line. Not true IMO.

    FOOTBALL OUTSIDERS: Innovative Statistics, Intelligent Analysis | 2013 OFFENSIVE LINES

    Having said that we do have a lot of question marks on the O line. If you have faith in what the new regime has done in the last two years. Signing one of the top FA in Jake long and finding starters off the wirer and developing them to improve the O line play. Then there is no reason to pound the table as to who we have to take. If they take Matthews great we got one of the best on paper in the draft if they trade down and draft one later, IMO they will put a good line on the field.

    Last year many pundits like Jim Thomas wanted the Rams to draft Eddie Lacy in the first round at 22. The Rams had a plan that did not include that move. But they did get that need filled later in the draft and also added other key players such as Tree and Bailey. In the end Eddie may prove to be the better player but will he be better then all three?

    If the old regime was running the draft I would say take the obvious player, play it safe. but this group has proven to me they know what they are doing.
    Last edited by Rambos; -02-11-2014 at 12:06 PM.

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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey View Post
    If we were able to wrangle both 4 and 26 from the Browns this year, not convinced there's a chance it happens, but I'd prefer to go something like this...

    4 Matthews
    13 Dix
    26 Jordan Matthews

    Help for the oline, a fs and a wr who can actually catch the ball regularly.
    that could work-- though Id prefer a diff WR-- maybe Evans at 13? and Prior 26th?
    It may work though, as this would give the Rams 4 receivers who played together in college (hopefully creating some sort of synergy).

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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    Quote Originally Posted by punahou View Post
    that could work-- though Id prefer a diff WR-- maybe Evans at 13? and Prior 26th?
    It may work though, as this would give the Rams 4 receivers who played together in college (hopefully creating some sort of synergy).
    I could go with that scenario as well, I just keep seeing things that make me think Prior is climbing up the boards and will be taken around Dix maybe even ahead of him. Strange things happen this time of year with the draft rumor mill.

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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rambos View Post
    And is that really bad, good or avg? Frank Gore who ran behind one of the best lines avg. 4.1 last year. Steven Jackson avg, 4.2 in his career so what are we talking about here, people act as if that is some how bad.

    We gone over how bad our QB has been pressured? According to Football Outsiders exclusive statistics. Our O line ranked 14th in pass protection in 2013, they ranked us 28th in 2011, that is a huge improvement. They also had us 30th in run blocking in 2011.

    Again some want to make claims under Les and Fisher we have not improved our O line. Not true IMO.

    FOOTBALL OUTSIDERS: Innovative Statistics, Intelligent Analysis | 2013 OFFENSIVE LINES

    Having said that we do have a lot of question marks on the O line. If you have faith in what the new regime has done in the last two years. Signing one of the top FA in Jake long and finding starters off the wirer and developing them to improve the O line play. Then there is no reason to pound the table as to who we have to take. If they take Matthews great we got one of the best on paper in the draft if they trade down and draft one later, IMO they will put a good line on the field.

    Last year many pundits like Jim Thomas wanted the Rams to draft Eddie Lacy in the first round at 22. The Rams had a plan that did not include that move. But they did get that need filled later in the draft and also added other key players such as Tree and Bailey. In the end Eddie may prove to be the better player but will he be better then all three?

    If the old regime was running the draft I would say take the obvious player, play it safe. but this group has proven to me they know what they are doing.
    You're saying they were improved because of sack % given up. I stated they were pressured. Chris Long knows all too well the difference. He's been a league leader year in and year out in QB pressures and it's great for the team just not a sexy number. Somebody already linked the stats and off the top of my head Sam and Kellen were both pressured right around 1 in every 3 times they dropped back to pass. That number listed iirc placed us 26th in the league. To be hurried and not let a play develop 33% of the time will help give your QB the reputation he has of being a check down king.

    Those stats you referenced are nice they put us right around average in the league. 6.7% sack rate, league average 7.0%. RB yards 3.95 league average 4.1. Power success% 58% league average 64%. Stuffed 19% league average 19%. I've used the term before and been criticized for it but our line last year was mediocre. Now compared to some of the lines the previous regime put out they were an improvement yes. Enough to help us get over the hump and realize our potential and reach the playoffs? I seriously doubt it with the injury history we have up front.

    Averaging under 4 is not good. Gore is getting older and older and losing what quickness he had, that 4.2 is also right around his career average. Jackson's career average would be higher on a lot of other teams because he ran behind some bad Rams lines. Stacy was off to a decent start if you look at it his first 7 starts he averaged 4.4 ypc. Then as our line deteriorated, got injured and started having problems he closed out the final five games with a 3.2 average.

    Again I don't know what Snead and Fisher will do with any of our draft picks. I hope we take Matthews #2 or 4 or 8 wherever we end up with our first pick in the 1st round. I'm tired of having average to below average offensive line performance. Last time we had a good line we had Orlando Pace lining up at LT.

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    Re: Could Rams luck out and get Clowney, Barr, and a stud Safety in the 1st round?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fortuninerhater View Post
    There's also no disputing that we all have our own opinions, sometimes we agree and sometimes we don't.
    Very true, and we're spinning our wheels at this point, so I'm not going to keep hammering back point by point on a topic we're destined to disagree on.

    I will say this, though. I'm glad my opinion doesn't depend on me defending Chris Williams as a valuable starter who should be brought back or the merits of a 3.9 yards per carry rushing average.


    Quote Originally Posted by Rambos View Post
    And is that really bad, good or avg?
    Of the running backs who played 50% of more of their offense's snaps this season, Stacy's 3.9 ypc average ranks 22nd out of 31. Of running backs who played 60% of their offense's snaps, Zac ranked 17th of 22. Not in the top half of either.

    If you total the carries and yards for the 31 running backs who played at least 50% of their snaps this season, the average per carry for them all combined would be 4.15 yards per carry. Simply put, Stacy's yards per carry output was below average.


    Quote Originally Posted by Rambos View Post
    Frank Gore who ran behind one of the best lines avg. 4.1 last year. Steven Jackson avg, 4.2 in his career so what are we talking about here, people act as if that is some how bad.
    Jackson's career average of 4.2 ypc ranks 174th all time, according to Pro Football Reference. Hardly something to brag about. Gore's 4.1 ypc average this season is a career worst; over the course of his career, he's averaged 4.6 yards per carry.

    If people are acting as if that is somehow bad, it's because it's much closer to bad than it is good.


    Quote Originally Posted by Rambos View Post
    Again some want to make claims under Les and Fisher we have not improved our O line. Not true IMO.
    Who is making that claim?

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