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  1. #31
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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    Careful. If there's any sizable Clausen crowd left, you're going to take heat for blaming him for some of the team's losses when their defense was so bad.

    Of course, what they won't tell you is that, bad defense or not, Jimmy had a chance to win at least 3-4 of those losses had he played better, but he couldn't pull through. He had an open receiver at the end of the USC game and didn't even see him. In the Navy game, down by only a touchdown with 1:34 left, Clausen held onto the ball too long on third down and was sacked, then didn't feel the backside pressure on fourth down and was hit for a safety.

    It's interesting, because many praise Clausen for the number of come-from-behind victories he's been able to achieve. But when you take a closer look at some of the losses Notre Dame suffered this year, you'd think a high first round quarterback prospect would have been able to get a few more when the opportunities were clearly there.
    To me this kind of fits in with the theme. Obviously he wasn't solely to blame for any of their losses, but you're right that they had a legit shot at winning several more than they did--and it just didn't quite work out. It's just another one of those things where it's not exactly something wrong with him so much as just disappointing that he couldn't do more. Maybe it's unfair, but considering that he was being groomed for this from middle school on going to a prestigious football prep school, getting professional mentoring, etc...you expect him to be good, and that's what he is. Very good, not spectacular. As an ND alumn, you expect him to get a good score on the Wonderlic, and that's what he does. Good, not spectacular. That's just the vibe I get in general.


    I would generally agree that Bradford may need to take Gruden's advice about sliding to heart. I remember seeing that attempted dive into the endzone, and I know why he did it. Bedlam is a big game in Oklahoma played over Thanksgiving weekend, and that game in particular was a real shootout. If he tries that kind of stunt in the pros, though, the defense will tear him apart. I didn't think he came off particularly poorly in that video segment, though. Sure, he was a little sheepish, but what's he going to say?

    As far as the leadership thing goes, it's hard for me to say where he falls on that spectrum. In the OU games that I saw, he seemed to be able to rally the team well enough. He doesn't come off as the kind of guy who is going to call others out very often, but it certainly seemed like the team listened to him.


    One of the interesting things about this particular year's quarterbacks is that I have a lot of family who attended both Notre Dame and Oklahoma. Maybe it was because the season was disappointing in general, but the ND folks seemed a lot less happy with Clausen than the OU folks were with Bradford at the last family gathering. Sure, it's small sample size and completely subjective, but it was still kind of telling to hear the way the two groups talked about their quarterbacks.


  2. #32
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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    Quote Originally Posted by Goldenfleece View Post
    I would generally agree that Bradford may need to take Gruden's advice about sliding to heart. I remember seeing that attempted dive into the endzone, and I know why he did it. Bedlam is a big game in Oklahoma played over Thanksgiving weekend, and that game in particular was a real shootout. If he tries that kind of stunt in the pros, though, the defense will tear him apart. I didn't think he came off particularly poorly in that video segment, though. Sure, he was a little sheepish, but what's he going to say?
    Is it too early to patent the nickname Sulky Sam?

    I'm really looking forward to the Tebow and McCoy videos. I watched the Bradford tape today on a Sportscenter replay and I did notice that he appeared to be unreceptive to criticisms and Gruden really had to coerce him into giving an answer. He worked so hard to get Sam to say he was "Working the Safety depending on whether the WR running the post or the RB underneath was open" and I was a little bit put-off by the interview.

    It seemed like Bradford is the sort of player who knew that he could stand to lose more than any of the other QB's by participating. He was having his flaws exposed to a national TV audience by a renowned Quarterback Guru in Jon Gruden and if it were me who had done so well to all-but-assure myself the number one pick in the draft, I wouldn't want to give any number of Average Joe armchair pundits the opportunity to berate the three faults Gruden pulled out in the short package that aired. It might just be me, but maybe Bradford didn't want to be there.

    The most striking difference I saw in the promo cut for Gruden's QB camp was that Tebow, for example, was turned toward Gruden, sitting upright and gesturing as he answered a question. I saw McCoy with a marker in his hand in front of a Whiteboard explaining the X's and O's of a particular play. Although they were clearly edited for content, those three seconds of footage on Tebow and McCoy were more exciting than the three minutes on Sam.

    I still think Bradford is the better QB and the most likely choice for us on April 22. If he selected, I will still stand and applaud DeSpags for making what they determined to be the best possible decision for this franchise. He just didn't come off very well in that particular interview and it makes me wonder if any other team officials, GM's and scouts across the league have experienced the same.

  3. #33
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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    Ok, not a Rams fan or follower, but I have some connections to the University of Notre Dame (so take that for what is it is worth) And I would like to chime in on this discussion, and I am shocked it has remained this under control, and that says a lot to your fanbase.

    Anyways, there are several things about what a few have said that I would like to respond too.

    One person said JC uses his whole body to throw, and it looks like he thrusts his whole body into his throws, and doesn't come off with power.... Well, in response to that...Have you tried throwing off a toe that has 2 torn ligaments in it? The kid was throwing on basically 1 foot/1 leg against teams 80% of the season. You cannot plant, or push off of the planting foot to get your power/base when you have an injury such as his. Many people don't know this but, Jimmy Clausen did not practice from the week he injured it through the end of the season. He would do a few drills on Wednesdays, but other than that he was not participating in practices. Yet, the young man was still at practice. He could not walk to class and was picked up in a golf cart to get him where he needed to go. Yet he kept great consistency's with his offense. It says a lot about a kid who is held out of practice to consistently put up the stats he did. Michael Floyd, who is considered a potential top 10 pick next year was out most of the season with an injury, Kyle Rudolph missed games, Armando Allen (the teams top RB) missed a good chunk of the season as well. So, Jimmy was dealing with many new lineup combinations, and not getting time to work out little kinks during the week.

    The person who said Sam Young is a good linemen, you have obviously not watched Sam Young play. The kid is a great person, and one of the nicest players to be around. But on the field, he has very slow feet, and not great athleticism to be a tackle, and at his size 6'7 320-330ish that is not a good combo. He is a decent run blocker, but is not a highly rated pass blocker. ND's best linemen was a sophmore in Trevor Robinson who played guard.

    There is much to be said about the toughness of Jimmy as well. Everyone knows about this year, as I stated above and what others have said. But last year he played about 50% of the season with actual turf toe. Yet, no one had a clue because it was never mentioned outside of certain circles and he played through it. But other than that, the kid had was hit so hard at Purdue his freshmen year his spleen was shifted, countless times his first 2 seasons his knees and elbows were swollen to unreal proportions. Yet, there was never a word said from his mouth about his line, teammates, schemes, or coaching. Maybe he just realized that playing with only 2 returning starters his freshmen year he would take some bumps and bruises. Playing with as many TRUE freshmen and TRUE sophmores who had never started showed a lot of character and leadership. You could watch them grow, and learn over the past 3 years. Their record may not have shown it, but they went from one of the worst offenses his freshmen year, to one of the most explosive offenses in the nation in 2 years.

    The person that said he missed a wide open WR against usc to win the game...That is off key. Rudolph was open in the back of the endzone, but was not watching for the ball, and hadnt even cut for his route yet. The ball he threw was a perfect ball that had Duval Kamara not slipped, it would have been a touchdown. The Navy game Clausen threw for a career high, and 4th best in school history 452 while setting a record for completions. The INT he threw inside the 5 yardline was thrown off the back of Floyd. Floyd in his first game back, read the play wrong and went to block for a slip screen, which in reality he was supposed to run a slant. Even he admitted this after the game. 3 of the 4 INTs Clausen threw were not even his fault as the bounced off the hands or back of his targets. He put his team in positions to win many games with his defense allowing scores in the in the final seconds of games to win. Michigan scored with 11seconds to play, Stanford scored with less than a minute left, Uconn scored in the 2nd OT after Clausen threw a TD to tie it in the first OT.

    I will say one last thing about Jimmy. He is a very confident guy, but he knows the line, as seen in his teammates following him. The kid has a drive that not many have. Working out 8hrs a day in Cali on summer break, flying Tate, Floyd, and Rudolph out to Cali to work with his trainers and to workout with them shows he is committed to the team. He has made his share of mistakes, but at the sametime who hasn't when they are in college (exlcuding Tim Tebow). Remember, he has been in the spotlight since he was a sophmore in high school, and has only gotten significantly better every year. If I was a Rams fan/mangement, I would take a good hard look at this kid before naming Bradford the #1 pick. With that said, I dont think you can go wrong with either, but Clausen has 'that thing' about him. You give him the chance to shine, he will.

    PS. I know he had a visit with the Rams this week, has that happened bc I know Bradford is already in town.

  4. #34
    Ramzee is offline Registered User
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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    Quote Originally Posted by RockinRam View Post
    Bradford vs. Clausen (Talent around them):

    There is no doubt Bradford had better, all around talent around him than Clausen.

    Let's start with Bradford.

    * He had good receivers throughout his OU career. Never any elite WRs though.

    * He had an elite O-line in 2008. But in 2009, his line had a big drop off of talent.

    * He's had an elite TE throughout his OU career.


    Now, Clausen's turn.

    * Never had a solid line in front of him, but he does have 2 good o-linemen. Eric Olsen and Sam Young.

    * He has had Golden Tate (a first round prospect) and Michael Floyd (a top 7 prospect for next year) as targets. Not to shabby eh? Beats whatever Bradford has/had, that's for sure.

    *Has had Kyle Rudolph as a TE target. Rudolph is considered to be the best TE of his class, and NFL draft scout calls him, "one of the best TE's in college football". As a sophmore no less.



    What this says here is that Bradford has had the better o-line in front of him. There's no argument about that. When you have Duke Robinson, Trent Williams, and Phil Loadholt blocking for you, that's a real treat. BUT, IMO, I think Clausen has the better targets.
    Your assessment seems a bit lopsided. Not only have the Oklahoma guys been far far more productive than anything the Notre Dame guys have done but due to the offense, you'd expect the Notre Dame guys to have the edge since there are far less people to divvy the ball up to, not to mention no running game to speak of.

    A quick disclaimer: Before anyone mentions Kelly and Iglesias's NFL production, I'd like to point out that many draft picks enjoy the 3 year rule before being judged harshly based on their early performances. Kelly has had two injury plagued years in the league (which was a legitimate and noted concern coming out of college that downgraded his stock) and Iglesias only one year. Not to mention the fact that spread WR's never get jammed at the LOS in college and that is a noted problem in their transition to the NFL.

    With that said. Onto the breakdown:

    Oklahoma WR's/TE

    - Malcolm Kelly (Highly rated - 2nd rounder who was a projected 1st round talent)

    - Juaquin Iglesias (3rd rounder)

    - Manuel Johnson (Drafted, 7th rounder)

    - Ryan Broyles (You didn't even bother to mention this guy. Possible future 1st rounder in 2011/2012, put up 1,500+ yards last year. Contributed in 08.)

    - Jermaine Gresham (1st/2nd round talent, some consider elite - Career year: 950 yds, 14 TD's)

    - Brody Eldridge (Blocking specialist who had to play O-Line half the year last year but should get drafted as well.)


    Notre Dame WR's/TE

    - Golden Tate (1st/2nd round prospect. Had a great year as pretty much the only legit, healthy target on the Notre Dame team for half the year)

    - Michael Floyd (Possible future 1st rounder in 2011/2012 with bright future. Has yet to stay healthy and put it all together though. His career highs have been outproduced by both Kelly and Iglesias two years each and even by a pretty significant amount in some cases.)

    - Robby Parris (Laughable to add to the list but he's the best they have after Tate/Floyd)

    - Kyle Rudolph (Talented, I give you that but like Floyd, injured and has yet to put it all together and certainly won't while Clausen was on watch. Career year: 363 yards, 3 TD's)

    - John Carlson (2nd rounder. Played one year with Clausen and his stats were 372 yards, 3 TD's)

    I'm less than impressed by the production here from the Notre dame guys outside of Golden Tate, especially the talented TE's, who may have done more blocking than receiving in their time there due to the leaky as a sieve O-Line. You could say Tate's numbers are pretty well inflated as well because for the majority of the year he was the only legitimate threat on that offense, both in the pass and/or run game. Parris certainly wasn't alleviating any pressure.

    This is not even factoring in the line that Bradford enjoyed and I find Sam Young being listed as talented, to be highly debatable. Considering he was abused all year and even under consistent one on one situations by a 3 man rush.
    Last edited by Ramzee; -04-14-2010 at 05:45 AM.

  5. #35
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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick
    Careful. If there's any sizable Clausen crowd left, you're going to take heat for blaming him for some of the team's losses when their defense was so bad.

    Of course, what they won't tell you is that, bad defense or not, Jimmy had a chance to win at least 3-4 of those losses had he played better, but he couldn't pull through. He had an open receiver at the end of the USC game and didn't even see him. In the Navy game, down by only a touchdown with 1:34 left, Clausen held onto the ball too long on third down and was sacked, then didn't feel the backside pressure on fourth down and was hit for a safety.

    It's interesting, because many praise Clausen for the number of come-from-behind victories he's been able to achieve. But when you take a closer look at some of the losses Notre Dame suffered this year, you'd think a high first round quarterback prospect would have been able to get a few more when the opportunities were clearly there.
    That's quite some spin on the subject.

    I'll bring up two games in particular and keep in mind, I'm an SC fan, born and raised.

    USC: Got jobbed on the goal line by what appeared to me to be a TD pass to Kyle Rudolph on a fade route. Has one foot in, has the ball, falls out of bounds. Refs say he was out of bounds. The replay appears to contradict that though but being an SC fan, I was ecstatic about the call. Final play of the game, WR falls down in what would appear to be a timing route that would have been on the money. I firmly believe that if the WR doesn't slip and is capable of catching a ball that would have appeared to have hit him in stride, Notre Dame wins this game. Instead, WR slips and ball sails right by his face incomplete.

    Navy: Funny you should mention this one. I know Jimmy feels real bad about that Safety. Weis has noted he was pretty hung up on it, blaming himself for the loss but there were two other game changing moments in that game that you failed to mention that could have altered the outcome of the game in a positive way for Notre Dame.

    #1: The helmet to helmet hit on the goal line. Clausen scrambles. Clausen smells the end zone and gets hammered on the 1 yard line by a defender. Plain as day you can see helmet to helmet contact but there was no penalty thrown on the play. Why? I have no idea. The result of the play though is a fumble by Clausen and him down on the ground for several minutes shaken up. A scary moment for ND fans, I'm sure. Navy recovers.

    #2: I believe this was Floyds first game back from injury and what a rookie mistake he makes inside the 5 yard line on a key drive. On the play in question, it's 1st down. Floyd runs down to the 5 yard line and this appears to be a come back timing route thrown by Clausen. Instead of turning around and seeking out the ball, Floyd assumes a blocking stance and starts to block the CB inside the 5 yard line. The ball hits him dead square center in his back, unluckily pops straight up in the air and is intercepted by a defender and subsequently run back. Drive and momentum killed.

    Even a FG on either play wins this ball game but two blown opportunities under freak circumstances change the outcome. They're symbolic to me of the actual game as well because no matter what, Notre Dame just couldn't catch a break in this game.

    I could elaborate more on some other games too. This goes to show you there is much more to it than what you put out there and a bit contradictory to your post as well.
    Last edited by Ramzee; -04-14-2010 at 06:03 AM.

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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    Quote Originally Posted by TheDynasty View Post
    Ok, not a Rams fan or follower, but I have some connections to the University of Notre Dame (so take that for what is it is worth) And I would like to chime in on this discussion, and I am shocked it has remained this under control, and that says a lot to your fanbase.

    Anyways, there are several things about what a few have said that I would like to respond too.

    One person said JC uses his whole body to throw, and it looks like he thrusts his whole body into his throws, and doesn't come off with power.... Well, in response to that...Have you tried throwing off a toe that has 2 torn ligaments in it? The kid was throwing on basically 1 foot/1 leg against teams 80% of the season. You cannot plant, or push off of the planting foot to get your power/base when you have an injury such as his. Many people don't know this but, Jimmy Clausen did not practice from the week he injured it through the end of the season. He would do a few drills on Wednesdays, but other than that he was not participating in practices. Yet, the young man was still at practice. He could not walk to class and was picked up in a golf cart to get him where he needed to go. Yet he kept great consistency's with his offense. It says a lot about a kid who is held out of practice to consistently put up the stats he did. Michael Floyd, who is considered a potential top 10 pick next year was out most of the season with an injury, Kyle Rudolph missed games, Armando Allen (the teams top RB) missed a good chunk of the season as well. So, Jimmy was dealing with many new lineup combinations, and not getting time to work out little kinks during the week.

    The person who said Sam Young is a good linemen, you have obviously not watched Sam Young play. The kid is a great person, and one of the nicest players to be around. But on the field, he has very slow feet, and not great athleticism to be a tackle, and at his size 6'7 320-330ish that is not a good combo. He is a decent run blocker, but is not a highly rated pass blocker. ND's best linemen was a sophmore in Trevor Robinson who played guard.

    There is much to be said about the toughness of Jimmy as well. Everyone knows about this year, as I stated above and what others have said. But last year he played about 50% of the season with actual turf toe. Yet, no one had a clue because it was never mentioned outside of certain circles and he played through it. But other than that, the kid had was hit so hard at Purdue his freshmen year his spleen was shifted, countless times his first 2 seasons his knees and elbows were swollen to unreal proportions. Yet, there was never a word said from his mouth about his line, teammates, schemes, or coaching. Maybe he just realized that playing with only 2 returning starters his freshmen year he would take some bumps and bruises. Playing with as many TRUE freshmen and TRUE sophmores who had never started showed a lot of character and leadership. You could watch them grow, and learn over the past 3 years. Their record may not have shown it, but they went from one of the worst offenses his freshmen year, to one of the most explosive offenses in the nation in 2 years.

    The person that said he missed a wide open WR against usc to win the game...That is off key. Rudolph was open in the back of the endzone, but was not watching for the ball, and hadnt even cut for his route yet. The ball he threw was a perfect ball that had Duval Kamara not slipped, it would have been a touchdown. The Navy game Clausen threw for a career high, and 4th best in school history 452 while setting a record for completions. The INT he threw inside the 5 yardline was thrown off the back of Floyd. Floyd in his first game back, read the play wrong and went to block for a slip screen, which in reality he was supposed to run a slant. Even he admitted this after the game. 3 of the 4 INTs Clausen threw were not even his fault as the bounced off the hands or back of his targets. He put his team in positions to win many games with his defense allowing scores in the in the final seconds of games to win. Michigan scored with 11seconds to play, Stanford scored with less than a minute left, Uconn scored in the 2nd OT after Clausen threw a TD to tie it in the first OT.

    I will say one last thing about Jimmy. He is a very confident guy, but he knows the line, as seen in his teammates following him. The kid has a drive that not many have. Working out 8hrs a day in Cali on summer break, flying Tate, Floyd, and Rudolph out to Cali to work with his trainers and to workout with them shows he is committed to the team. He has made his share of mistakes, but at the sametime who hasn't when they are in college (exlcuding Tim Tebow). Remember, he has been in the spotlight since he was a sophmore in high school, and has only gotten significantly better every year. If I was a Rams fan/mangement, I would take a good hard look at this kid before naming Bradford the #1 pick. With that said, I dont think you can go wrong with either, but Clausen has 'that thing' about him. You give him the chance to shine, he will.

    PS. I know he had a visit with the Rams this week, has that happened bc I know Bradford is already in town.
    Good post. I just got done posting a lot of similar things in regards to the close games they lost last year.

    As for his visit. Devaney (the GM) likes to bring in a lot of guys all at once in batches because he likes to see how the guys interact with each other. I'm pretty sure Bradford and Clausen are still there for another day (today) out of their 2 day visit.

  7. #37
    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    Since both posts were similar, I'll try and respond to both at the same time.


    USC/Kamara: There are a few points to be made. To start, whether or not Clausen threw a "perfect ball" or one that would have been "on the money" is highly debatable. Since Kamara fell down at his break, we have no real way of confirming ball placement, meaning it's highly subjective. But having rewatched the play with an eye on where I think Kamara would have been in that route in relation to the ball, I'm not convinced at all this was a perfect strike. Rather, I think it would have hit Kamara closer to his back shoulder than his front.

    Ball placement is a concern that was echoed at Clausen's pro day, where reports indicated that receivers had to gear down a bit when catching his passes. I think Kamara likely would have had to do that here, because I don't think it would have been in in the ideal spot in front of him, especially with Bryant on top of him step for step.

    Secondly, what's gone unmentioned regarding the Kamara slip is that he had a USC defender - T.J. Bryant I believe - right on him. When Kamara started to break, Bryant was breaking with him. It was going to be tight coverage, so who knows if that pass is completed, especially if there are questions (and I think there are) about where that ball is going to hit Kamara if he stays up.

    The guy did fall down, which is a tough break. No one is denying that. But I'm not convinced that the result would have been a touchdown had he not fallen - I have questions about the ball placement and it looks like he would have been pretty well covered.


    USC/Rudolph: Before talking about the final play, let's start with something else. There was a claim that Notre Dame got jobbed on the Rudolph fade play, but I really don't see that at all, and I say that as someone who rewatched the end of this game in order to respond today. Rudolph did not establish possession before his knee came down on the out of bounds line. Replay didn't contradict this; it confirmed it. The ball is tipped, Rudolph reaches out and then attempts to bring in the ball, but his knee lands out of bounds as he's coming down. Frankly I thought it was pretty clear based on the angles they showed.

    Now, moving on to the final play of the game as it relates to Rudolph, he appears to be an ideal target in this scenario. He starts the play by completely beating press coverage and shifting right by his defender. He then makes his cut inside as Jimmy is making the throw to Kamara. It was implied that Rudolph wasn't an option because he wasn't looking at Clausen and also hadn't completed his cut. But that doesn't make much sense at all, as quarterbacks are regularly asked to throw to receivers who haven't made their cut and who aren't turned to look at them. In fact, I'd contend that the best QBs make those throws in anticipation of the open man, because often times waiting for him to finish his route and look at you means you've waited too long.

    Instead of waiting maybe another half second to catch Rudolph as he crosses open behind the safety in the back of the endzone, Clausen appears to be focused on the out route. Ultimately the play fails, and that failure is only magnified when you recall Rudolph breaking open a split second later in what strikes me as a much better opportunity for a touchdown.


    Clausen/Navy: As for the Navy game, my specific criticism of Clausen wasn't the interception, but the two sacks he took on third and fourth down, one of which led to a safety. And Ramzee essentially confirmed that point - I'm sure the reason he felt bad about it was because he had the ball in his hands with a little under two minutes to go, and took two unnecessary sacks that essentially sealed the game. The fact that there were other plays in the game where things could have shifted is irrelevant; the point was to counter this implication (made often by Clausen fans) that Clausen couldn't have won any of these games because his defense was so bad. But you look at these games, and bad defense or not, he has chances to get a win and doesn't.


    We could argue the "What if's" of plays all day, but that really wasn't the point. The point in bringing up games like USC or the Navy game is to counter this point that's often made whenever anyone brings up Notre Dame's record - you can't blame Jimmy for their losses because their defense was so bad. The implication of that statement is that Jimmy was never in a position to win these games. But he was, and I think his choices are open to question. No spin here, just calling it as I see it.
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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    Since both posts were similar, I'll try and respond to both at the same time.


    USC/Kamara: There are a few points to be made. To start, whether or not Clausen threw a "perfect ball" or one that would have been "on the money" is highly debatable. Since Kamara fell down at his break, we have no real way of confirming ball placement, meaning it's highly subjective. But having rewatched the play with an eye on where I think Kamara would have been in that route in relation to the ball, I'm not convinced at all this was a perfect strike. Rather, I think it would have hit Kamara closer to his back shoulder than his front.

    Ball placement is a concern that was echoed at Clausen's pro day, where reports indicated that receivers had to gear down a bit when catching his passes. I think Kamara likely would have had to do that here, because I don't think it would have been in in the ideal spot in front of him, especially with Bryant on top of him step for step.

    Secondly, what's gone unmentioned regarding the Kamara slip is that he had a USC defender - T.J. Bryant I believe - right on him. When Kamara started to break, Bryant was breaking with him. It was going to be tight coverage, so who knows if that pass is completed, especially if there are questions (and I think there are) about where that ball is going to hit Kamara if he stays up.

    The guy did fall down, which is a tough break. No one is denying that. But I'm not convinced that the result would have been a touchdown had he not fallen - I have questions about the ball placement and it looks like he would have been pretty well covered.


    USC/Rudolph: Before talking about the final play, let's start with something else. There was a claim that Notre Dame got jobbed on the Rudolph fade play, but I really don't see that at all, and I say that as someone who rewatched the end of this game in order to respond today. Rudolph did not establish possession before his knee came down on the out of bounds line. Replay didn't contradict this; it confirmed it. The ball is tipped, Rudolph reaches out and then attempts to bring in the ball, but his knee lands out of bounds as he's coming down. Frankly I thought it was pretty clear based on the angles they showed.

    Now, moving on to the final play of the game as it relates to Rudolph, he appears to be an ideal target in this scenario. He starts the play by completely beating press coverage and shifting right by his defender. He then makes his cut inside as Jimmy is making the throw to Kamara. It was implied that Rudolph wasn't an option because he wasn't looking at Clausen and also hadn't completed his cut. But that doesn't make much sense at all, as quarterbacks are regularly asked to throw to receivers who haven't made their cut and who aren't turned to look at them. In fact, I'd contend that the best QBs make those throws in anticipation of the open man, because often times waiting for him to finish his route and look at you means you've waited too long.

    Instead of waiting maybe another half second to catch Rudolph as he crosses open behind the safety in the back of the endzone, Clausen appears to be focused on the out route. Ultimately the play fails, and that failure is only magnified when you recall Rudolph breaking open a split second later in what strikes me as a much better opportunity for a touchdown.


    Clausen/Navy: As for the Navy game, my specific criticism of Clausen wasn't the interception, but the two sacks he took on third and fourth down, one of which led to a safety. And Ramzee essentially confirmed that point - I'm sure the reason he felt bad about it was because he had the ball in his hands with a little under two minutes to go, and took two unnecessary sacks that essentially sealed the game. The fact that there were other plays in the game where things could have shifted is irrelevant; the point was to counter this implication (made often by Clausen fans) that Clausen couldn't have won any of these games because his defense was so bad. But you look at these games, and bad defense or not, he has chances to get a win and doesn't.


    We could argue the "What if's" of plays all day, but that really wasn't the point. The point in bringing up games like USC or the Navy game is to counter this point that's often made whenever anyone brings up Notre Dame's record - you can't blame Jimmy for their losses because their defense was so bad. The implication of that statement is that Jimmy was never in a position to win these games. But he was, and I think his choices are open to question. No spin here, just calling it as I see it.
    USC/Rudolph non-TD: If we're going by the knee, then I'd agree with that assessment, however the foot is down before the knee ever is. At that point all you can question is if he had control of the ball yet. Looks like he has it to me right after the tip as he's coming to the ground.

    USC/Kamara: All the youtube highlights I find only show the one original camera angle from the original play. During the broadcast they show several different angles though and the one from the back of Jimmy is a pretty good one. We can agree to disagree though. I thought the ball was money.

    Notre Dame record: I haven't seen any comments regarding Clausen being infallible in regards to ND's record. I think the premise is much more about Jimmy putting ND in a position to win the game in many instances and the defense falling apart sealing another loss that didn't have to be that way and it's true.

    There are plenty of examples where if the defense could get the other teams offense off the field, just once, which isn't too much to ask, they could have enjoyed a win but because they could not, there was no chance to win the game. You could argue the outcome of all the plays prior to then and why ND didn't wasn't in a better position to pull out a win but it's futile. ND's defense wasn't an asset and at times was nearly impossible to overcome.

    Stanford is a great example. ND were leading by 8 entering the 4th quarter. Stanford ran a significant amount of time off the clock and scores but they need a 2 pt conversion to tie the game with just 9 minutes left. Of course, they convert it. ND was forced to punt the ball with just under 6 minutes left, it's unfortunate but it happens. Stanford (or should I say Gerhart) drives down the field, soaks up the clock in the process and scores with just under 1 minute left in the game. Clausen receives the ball at around his own 10 yard line with around 50 seconds to go 90 yards to tie the game. Things were actually looking pretty good until he got sacked with no time outs left at Stanford's 32 yard line. I guess you could use this as another example of Clausen being in a position to win the game and failing or falling short though. You can't always have to play from behind and that's what Clausen had to do. Sometimes you need a defense to hold a lead for once. Clausen: 23/30, 76.7%, 340 yards, 5 TD's, 0 INT's. What more do you want the guy to do, seriously?
    Last edited by Ramzee; -04-14-2010 at 03:25 PM.

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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    If you put Jimmy Clausen on say, an Ohio State, USC from this past year. They dont lose a game. ND's defense outside of Nevada (which I do not to this day know how they managed to shut them out), Washington St...played good in one ball game and that was Washington, and they still managed to let Washington kick a field goal after Clausen threw a TD to go up with less than a minute remaining.

    Devils advocate---put Bradford on Notre Dame, and Clausen on Oklahoma...Does Bradford do a better job in 3 years there? Probably not. Put Clausen on Oklahoma for 3 years? He would have done just as good. Having a consistent running game will do wonders for a qb. Clausen was facing 8/9 men in coverage, and still managed to pick teams apart in 2009.

    As far as the Navy play on the endzone where he fumbled. Clausen kind of lowered his body to "try" to truck the defender lol. That is why I do not think a helmet to helmet was called. I know ND Nation was very critical of Jimmy for that play. He took a lot of heat for not sliding, or even throwing it away. But, he was just trying to make a play for his team that was flat, and he just got rocked lol.

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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    Fascinating stuff,guys.However, I think it comes down to what kind of a fan you are at heart.Just as Uma Thurman's character in Pulp Fiction makes an interesting distinction between Elvis people and Beatles people, I suspect fans are either the kind who think any given win /loss or good/bad season can largely be attributed to a QB and the kind who don't. And just as Elvis folks can like The Beatles & vice-versa, the two kinds of fans can occasionally agree in certain circumstances.

    Does any fan out there of the QB-centric variety want to break down Sam's performance in The Red River Shootout or BCS game vs The Gators?

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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    Naturally Clausen would have had and has had a better 3 years stint than bradford in term so yards due to Bradford missing an entire year of that 3 years stint. Had both been at 100 percent do i think Clausen would have done better. No. Really only pointless speculation and since your an ND fan, naturally your going to say Clausen.

    As far as Clausen having all these men in coverage. I saw wide open guys all day long pal. A lot of receivers stopping in stride and jumping over guys. Clausen made some pretty good throws sometimes but ive never really saw the guy thread the needle. Im sure his toe affecting his planting foot messed with a lot of his thtows. But based on what you seem to think, Clausen made better throws this year than Bradford did in 08, i just dont see it. And again, how bad was Clausen's line this past year? Saw two or three plays where the guy really didn't even have to move.
    YouTube - QB Jimmy Clausen Highlights/Lowlights 2009 Notre Dame Part 1

    I saw a guy who pretty good accuracy on intermediate routes. Floated deep balls and had a huge amount of trust in his receivers (whom didn't disappoint him). Not sure he does the same thing with Juaquin Iglesias and Malcolm Kelly. Would Clausen have been succesful in Oklahoma's offense. I would say yes. To the degree of Bradford, who knows, i don't think so. If 50 touchdowns were so easy to throw it would not have been a record.

    YouTube - QB Sam Bradford Highlights 2009/2008 Oklahoma

    With Bradford, I see a guy who played in a predominantly shotgun offense. He threw the vast majority of his balls with zip and accuracy at all levels of the field, and showed no effort or buildup to do so. His receivers were good and made plays after the catch. They also rarely (if at all, did you see any of them) break stride to make a tough reception. He showed adequate, not great ability to maneuver in the pocket. Very little examples of him tucking and running but on the few ive seen he has pretty good speed but terrible at protecting his body against blows.

    Honestly when I look at these two highlight/lowlight videos, I see two pretty damn good offensive lines pass blocking. Both QBs got lots of time to throw on a lot of plays but both made good throws when blitzes leaked through or they were doing screens with hands in their faces. For those who always like to comment that Bradford never gets hit. Take another look at the video, he takes some pretty nasty shots, dust himself off, and gets back into it. He got injured when he fell terribly and directly onto his shoulder. Will his shoulder suffer any long term effects. All indications from prior records of Dr Andrews surgeries, and the level of Sam's injuries, point to no. In fact, his arm looks stronger than it was before. Is Sam Bradford a durability question? sure, same as everyone other qb playing in the league. Is he any more likely to get injured than the next guy taking punishment? I truly and honeslty do not think so.
    Last edited by Nick; -04-14-2010 at 09:45 PM. Reason: Editing out language

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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    1. I am not a Rams fan, so I am not going to turn this discussion into something that it has not reached. But, you just posted youtube highlight videos. Of course, both guys are going to have their line block on highlight plays. You cannot base a players skill off youtube videos.

    2. I am actually not a ND fan. I have many connections to the ND program. I am very familiar with the Clausen situation, and I was shown this message board topic by a friend.

    3. I was not discounting Bradfords talent by any means. I think he has better size, and has a stronger arm than Clausen. Bradford and Clausen are by far different QBs, who played in different systems. Bradfords WRs routes are based on longer routes, and routes that cover the entire field. ND WRs routes will be explained later, but they are to take advantage of what the offense see's pre-snap, so they attack the weaknesses in the D, which typically is the sideline.

    4. You saw a lot of wide open recievers in whatever you watched due to Golden Tate, and Michael Floyd being the best player in their matchups. Also, as everyone knows ND runs a offense that is pro style. Meaning there are no set routes, and the WRs/QBs work off of what they see at pre-snap, and make degree/sight adjustments during the play. In 2009, they used the sideline because Floyd was hurt, and when he came back the sideline served as protection. With Clausen being limited, the quicker sideline routes were preserving his health as well.

    5. Notre Dame's line was good and bad. Their guards were the strength, while their tackles were slow, un-agile, and un-athletic. Having tackles that cannot pass block poses a great problem.

    6. If I was Charlie Weis, I would have told Jimmy to throw a high arching ball to Tate, and Floyd. 9 of 10 times they will get the ball. You don't want to play to your weaknesses. And those WRs are very good while the ball is in the air. And in the case of Tate, very good after the catch. Oklahoma's WRs are more of the guys that make catches, and can work after the play like Golden. Both offenses catered to the strengths of their players, like a good coach should. And both players have taken full advantage of it.

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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    FYI....Clausen and Mccoy were in Cleveland today.

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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    Quote Originally Posted by Ramzee View Post
    USC/Rudolph non-TD: If we're going by the knee, then I'd agree with that assessment, however the foot is down before the knee ever is. At that point all you can question is if he had control of the ball yet. Looks like he has it to me right after the tip as he's coming to the ground.
    And I don't believe he had it, so we'll have to agree to disagree. To me, he's scooped the ball after the tip with one hand, but has to pull it into his chest for possession. He doesn't do that before the knee hits.


    Quote Originally Posted by Ramzee View Post
    USC/Kamara: All the youtube highlights I find only show the one original camera angle from the original play. During the broadcast they show several different angles though and the one from the back of Jimmy is a pretty good one. We can agree to disagree though. I thought the ball was money.
    Again, it's all speculative since the guy fell and we don't know where the ball would have been placed. Your guess is as good as mine, but I don't think he would have been led very well if at all.


    Quote Originally Posted by Ramzee View Post
    Notre Dame record: I haven't seen any comments regarding Clausen being infallible in regards to ND's record. I think the premise is much more about Jimmy putting ND in a position to win the game in many instances and the defense falling apart sealing another loss that didn't have to be that way and it's true.
    I've participated in a number of discussions about Clausen here and elsewhere, and any time Notre Dame's record is brought up, the first thing his supporters counter with is, "You can't blame Clausen for those losses because the defense was so awful."

    Yes, the defense was completely awful at times and share a hefty portion of the blame. But Clausen definitely had chances in some of these games, and didn't come through. When people say you can't blame Clausen for the record because he had such a bad defense - which they have in discussions about him - then yeah, they're basically absolving him of any hand in it. Which isn't accurate.


    Quote Originally Posted by Ramzee View Post
    Clausen: 23/30, 76.7%, 340 yards, 5 TD's, 0 INT's. What more do you want the guy to do, seriously?
    In that game, not much. But I don't believe I criticized him for that one.


    Quote Originally Posted by TheDynasty View Post
    If you put Jimmy Clausen on say, an Ohio State, USC from this past year. They dont lose a game. ND's defense outside of Nevada (which I do not to this day know how they managed to shut them out), Washington St...played good in one ball game and that was Washington, and they still managed to let Washington kick a field goal after Clausen threw a TD to go up with less than a minute remaining.

    Devils advocate---put Bradford on Notre Dame, and Clausen on Oklahoma...Does Bradford do a better job in 3 years there? Probably not. Put Clausen on Oklahoma for 3 years? He would have done just as good. Having a consistent running game will do wonders for a qb. Clausen was facing 8/9 men in coverage, and still managed to pick teams apart in 2009.

    As far as the Navy play on the endzone where he fumbled. Clausen kind of lowered his body to "try" to truck the defender lol. That is why I do not think a helmet to helmet was called. I know ND Nation was very critical of Jimmy for that play. He took a lot of heat for not sliding, or even throwing it away. But, he was just trying to make a play for his team that was flat, and he just got rocked lol.
    I don't think anyone was arguing that the Notre Dame defense was great, but let's be honest - there were times when it did enough for a first round QB prospect and those weapons to have a chance to win more games than it did. And they didn't. I can say that confidently, because I watched those games (and rewatched them, in order to participate in discussions like these). Yes, they were bad at times and, in some instances, couldn't be overcome. But they weren't insurmountable every single time they took the field.


    Quote Originally Posted by Bralidore(RAMMODE) View Post
    Is Sam Bradford a durability question? sure, same as everyone other qb playing in the league.
    I just really don't see how this makes any sense. The only way Bradford would be no more a durability concern than every other QB is if you believe that past medical issues have absolutely no significance in future risk or the possibility of future injury. Using that logic, guys like Chad Pennington or Marc Bulger would have to be considered just as durable (and no more likely to get hurt) than guys like Favre or Manning.

    But we know there are some guys who just haven't been able to stay healthy and who have bigger concerns when it comes to their durability. Whether it's a chronic injury or a variety of injuries, some guys just can't hold up to the punishment. And Bradford's history - three injuries in a little over two seasons despite playing in a spread offense behind a talented offensive line - suggest this is an area of concern.

    Look, maybe you believe he'll be fine at the next level. Maybe you think he'll be able to hold up to the punishment. I have no problem with that. I'll be the first one to say I hope you're right and I'm wrong! But I think we have to at least be honest about the situation and acknowledge that Bradford's injury history/durability is at least a concern at the next level. Maybe not a concern that you think will rear its head, but a concern nonetheless. Claiming that he's just as durable as the next guy... I just don't get that.
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    Re: St. Louis Rams Get A Look At Jimmy Clausen

    Nick, I just don't consider a concussion that was suffered 3 years ago and he missed half a game for is significant like you seem to. Guys suffer concussions literally all the time. IN high school its very common, me having played it. Guy slams his head on the turf, gets a concussion, misses a half, comes back. I can't call that significant, i call that a small part of the game. Jason Smith's concussion is what I'd call significant. We'll just have to disagree there. He had the hand surgery in 2008. Is that significant? Seeing as noone has heard any more about it and it seemed pretty routine, not sure. That can be debated better than a his concussion, but i can't see that affecting future play. The shoulder is the only really significant thing i can attribute to Bradford. Every time i hear about this type of injury, and given the surgeon who performed the surgery, I just don't think the guy will continue to be bothered by it. If Brees can come back from a surgery that was hanging off of his body basically perfectly fine for 4+ years with arguably the greatest accuracy in the game, I can't see Bradford, who's injury was half as bad, suffering from it, especially with the added bulk. That's why I feel the way i do and it certainly can be debated. NFL players are always suffering nicks and dings and routinely get surgery for stuff. A mild concussion and a little hand surgery I don't call significant.

    I just can't call a guy fragile for getting just plain unlucky. Bulger and Pennington suffered injuries routinely and barely finished out seasons.

    We'll just have to see what happens to Bradford after he is drafted, I simply just do not agree that a mild concussion 3 years ago is significant at all. And the hand surgery was pretty routine.

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