With three games left to go in the 2012 season, the Rams are still in the playoff hunt.
If you’re a Rams fan, those are some of the most beautiful words you have heard this week. I know they are beautiful to me. The chances that the Rams will actually make it to the wild card round are very slim. If the season ended today, the Rams would be the 10th seed. Over the next three weeks, we will be facing three teams who are also in the hunt for a playoff spot. First, it’s the Vikings, then the Bucs, and finally the Seahawks. Each of these teams are dangerous – the Vikings are fighting their way up, the Seahawks are under the impression that they can actually win out and take the division away from the niners, and the Bucs are pretty much in the same spot we are in – they not only have to win out, but have to have a little help from Lady Luck.
By beating the Bills this past Sunday, the Rams have won three in a row. Those are beautiful words, too. If you have been a Rams fan for a while, you have paid the dues. You got used to hearing things like “the Rams came up short”, or “embarrassing loss by the Rams”. The Rams have shown that they CAN win on the road, CAN beat better teams, and CAN compete with the best in the NFL.
Sometimes, that is. We came up short in some games we should have won – Detroit and Miami are two examples. We got slaughtered in London by the Pats, yet we took the best the niners could give – and beat them. We aren’t the Rams of the past few seasons, that’s for sure. But, on the other hand, we aren’t the team we need to be to compete consistently every week. We’re close – probably one more draft away – but we aren’t there yet.
This past Sunday was a prime example of this. The Bills – a team that by all rights should be rated better than they are – looked to be the team that would come out of this game with a win. Just to make sure that the Bills started off looking like the stronger team, the Rams had to do the best job they could at shooting themselves in the foot. Bradford couldn’t complete a pass for any reason, Jackson couldn’t get more than a yard or two, and our defense was starting to make some simple mistakes. It looked like another game where the Rams would allow our opponents to set several new franchise records. Yet, for some reason, I didn’t worry. This season, I found out that the Rams don’t give up.
That faith in the Rams was rewarded with only 48 seconds left on the clock as Chris Givens sealed the deal after Brandon Gibson put six on the board, giving us the lead.
I still haven’t gotten to the point of remaining calm when we are in need of a last minute score to win or tie a game. Only one short year ago, the Rams always seemed to find a way to lose a game if we had a chance in the fourth quarter. This year, if we’re still alive, it is almost as if we have the “Hulk Hogan” syndrome. Those of us who are old enough remember the Hulkster remember his usual routine – every time he got in the ring, he got a beatdown. Everyone knew he was hurt, no human could come back from that, he was finished. Then – from underneath a half ton of muscles and/or flab, there it was – a hand. Soon, that hand began to tremble. Once that hand was shaking, it didn’t matter who was pinning the Hulk on the mat, every person KNEW that Hulk was going to get up and beat the living haggis out of his opponent.
Jeff Fisher seems to have instilled that same “shaking hand” desire in the Rams. The difference is that the NFL is not usually a scripted performance, but instead, an actual competition. It is such an inspiring thought knowing that the Rams will fight to the bloody end.
Now, for this week’s “Silver Linings”:
1. Sam Bradford: For some reason, many in Rams nation are ready to toss him to the wolves; I don’t understand the negativity. Yes, he had a crappy day, he didn’t complete many passes. What some people don’t seem to see is the “never say die” attitude he has. People always tell me that if the running game doesn’t work, keep feeding the ball to Steven. I say if the passing game doesn’t work, keep throwing the ball. This week, it paid off. After three quarters of incompletions and an interception, Sam kept throwing the ball. The end result was a win.
2. Jo-Lonn Dunbar: An interception at just the right time to seal the win for the Rams, along with two tackles and four assists. Not a bad day’s work.
3. Brandon Gibson: In his fourth season, he is showing the consistency and talent I wish he would have shown all along. Six receptions, 100 yards and one TD made him a standout in the game. Yes, he missed a few, including a couple he should have been able to grab, but while I was cussing about this, I remembered it was cold, and there was rain and sleet falling.
4. Steven Jackson: He didn’t have the kind of day I wanted to see, but he did have some success. One of the most important things this man does is wearing down the defense. It’s truly amazing the way he can carry the ball and five or six defenders at the same time. Another important thing he does is scare our opponents. He may not be as big as some of the linemen, but I guarantee you they feel it when Jackson hits them. You’d feel it if a 6’2”, 240 pound brick wall ran into you at full speed, too. Though he only went 19 carries for 64 yards, he racked up six points for us.
5. Johnny Hekker, a.k.a. “Puntimus Prime”: All I can say is “HOW?” I am still amazed at the recovery and kick he made. I still can’t believe he got that kick off.
6. Michael Brockers: One and a half sacks, and looking better every week. I think we got a great deal on this draft pick.
I’m making the list a little shorter this week. I am of the opinion that we did not give our best in this game, at least not until late in the fourth quarter. There were other bright spots in this game, and I am sure you will agree. There were also some rather bad spots.
Three more weeks – unless the Rams can find a way to win the next three games and have a little luck on their side; this is all we have left for football this season. I don’t think the Rams will be giving up at any point before the season ends; instead they will fight until the final second of the last game.
Everyone be careful out there; I would like to say חנוכה שמחה, Merry Christmas, and Habari Gani to those I may not see or talk with before the Holidays.
No announcement yet.
Sam's Silver Linings - Week Fourteen
Now that the Senior Bowl is firmly in the rear view mirrior, here's an updated look at how things could shake out in the first round of the NFL Draft this year. As always, feedback and constructive criticism is welcome! ROUND ONE 1. Tennessee Titans: Laremy Tunsil, OT, Mississippi -Tennessee is second in the league in sacks allowed, and no quarterback when pressured has been sacked at as large of a percentage as Marcus Mariota has been. Tunsil gives the Titans a legitimate left tackle to pair with Taylor Lewan on the offensive line. 2. Cleveland Browns: Jared Goff, QB, California -The hype train for Carson Wentz is in full steam, but I'm not ready to put him in the Top 5 as some other people are. I still view Goff as the top QB in the class, meaning he makes a lot of sense for a Cleveland team that is tired of Johnny Manziel's screw ups. 3. San Diego Chargers: Jalen Ramsey, CB, Florida State -Brandon Flowers was graded out as one of the worst corners in the league by Pro Football Focus, and Eric Weddle won't be coming back. The Chargers could use help in both areas, and Ramsey is capable of excelling at either at the next level. 4. Dallas Cowboys: Joey Bosa, DE, Ohio State -Will the Cowboys flirt with taking a QB here? Maybe, but I also think Jerr...-01-31-2016, 03:12 PM
RamView, January 3, 2016 Game #16: ***** 19, Rams 16 (OT) The ever-inconsistent Rams regress back to the mean and end another losing season with another disappointing loss to a team they had no business losing to. The hallmark of Jeff Fisher Rams football isn't the running game or aggressive defense, it's miserable losses like this one. Good riddance to 2015. Position by position: * QB: Case Keenum (23-37-231, PR 77.6) does a lot right for the Rams at QB. He runs the offense with good tempo and gets the ball out quickly on quick-timing plays. He’s smart and tough in the pocket, uses his mobility well and rarely gets sacked. The best example of that was a play he made in the 3rd. He rolled right, deked a free-running Aaron Lynch into pul...-01-05-2016, 09:50 PM
The Todd Gurley-less Rams finished their season 7-9 with a disappointing OT loss to the whiners by the score of 19-16 on the strength of terrible third down play on both sides of the ball, untimely penalties, terrible field goal kicking and some highly suspect play calling with the team poised to win the game in overtime. The Rams shortcomings against a 5-11 couldnt have been more obvious today. At the end of the day, Case Keenum is not an NFL starting qb, albeit a reasonable backup. Way too many missed opportunities, and without todd gurley, and with all of our injuries on defense, we arent close to good enough to simply have a qb who is going to avoid mistakes at all costs, afraid to make throws. Toss in some untimely drops by our receivers and at least one terrible call by the refs that obviously cost us 3 points at the minimum, and you find a way to lose a game that we all know we should have won. No points...-01-04-2016, 01:51 AM
In what should be considered their most impressive win in the Fisher era, the Rams won their third game in a row by beating and beating up the seachickens in a tremendous 23-17 win. The Rams capitalized on 3 seachicken turnovers (one of which resulted in a defensive touchdown), didn't turn the ball over themselves, kept the penalties to a minimum, and scrounged out just enough offense to earn their first season sweep of the chickens since 2004. The Rams played their best half of the year jumping out to a 16-3 lead at the break and hung in there to avoid a collapse at the scene of so many painful prior year debacles. Frankly, i am riddled with mixed and incredibly extreme and passionate emotions at this point. On the one hand, i am so thrilled with a tremendous win over a playoff caliber team on the road in which the Rams proved once and for all that they have the talent and capability to win big games, notwithstanding...-12-28-2015, 01:40 AM
Good write up.
I think it was ugly that we accepted the penalty with the Seagulla on 4 and 10. Giving them a new (long) third down. I am pretty sure they would not have gone for it on 4 and 10.
Else great game.-12-28-2015, 01:39 AM
RamView, December 17, 2015 Game #14: Rams 31, Bucs 23 If this was the Rams' last week in St. Louis, at least they made it a heck of a week. They won for the second time in five days Thursday night and made the Bucs look like the team that could not cut the mustard. Position by position: * QB: Case Keenum (14-17-234, 2 TD, PR 158.0) managed the heck out of this game. He led the Rams to an opening drive TD throwing little but screens and swing passes. But Case did not live on small ball alone, also throwing a perfect 60-yard TD bomb to Kenny Britt later in the 1st. The Ram passing game was in good rhythm much of the game, and Keenum distributed the ball well. On the Rams' TD drive in the 2nd, he hit Tavon Austin for 13, Lance K...-12-20-2015, 03:01 AM