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  • Feel the rhythm feel the rhyme, get on up, its bobsled time!

    The Jamaican bobsled team may be headed to another Olympics.
    The catch: It needs a lot of money, and it needs it fast.
    Olympic organizers said Saturday that Jamaica has qualified for the two-man competition at next month's Sochi Games, though it remains unclear if the fledgling squad will get a chance to race. Funding is a serious problem, and sled driver Winston Watts told The Associated Press on Saturday that he's trying to raise as much as $80,000 in the next couple weeks to cover travel and equipment costs.
    "Right now," Watts said, "we're at zero."
    Team Jamaica saluted Watts and brakeman Marvin Dixon for qualifying by taking to Twitter on Saturday:
    They are certainly among the world's most storied bobsled teams, and that has little to do with results. Jamaica first competed in Olympic bobsledding in 1988 at the Calgary Games, a story that inspired the "Cool Runnings" film. For a nation lacking bobsled tradition, or snowy winters, Jamaica has often fared quite well on the international circuits.
    It's been 12 years since Jamaica has had a sled in the Olympics, with Watts finishing 28th at the Salt Lake City Games with Lascelles Brown -- now a key part of Canada's national team. Brown won a medal at the 2010 Vancouver Games, one where the Jamaicans were hoping to compete but were again thwarted by funding issues.
    Still, the 46-year-old Watts -- who called himself "retired" from sliding for nearly a decade -- has held on to hope of sliding again on the sport's biggest stage.
    "We're pretty good," Watts said. "We're not there with the rest of the world, of course. But we if had some more sources for funding, we'd have a better chance."
    He started the season thinking he could get a four-man sled ready for Sochi, before quickly realizing that was too expensive. His focus then shifted to the two-man sled and by racing in a number of lower-tier events at tracks in Park City, Lake Placid and Calgary in recent months, Watts and Dixon piled up enough points to get into the Olympic mix.
    Sochi officials tweeted word Saturday that the Jamaicans were in, but the International Bobsleigh & Skeleton Federation -- the sport's governing body -- is not expected to confirm before Sunday at the earliest how many nations qualified for the Olympic fields.
    Watts said he's confident that Jamaica is qualified.
    "I'm not a person who likes to quit," Watts said. "I put my heart into it and I know for a fact that people are going to help this team.

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  • AvengerRam_old
    Bernie's Latest, Annotated (or... snappy answers to stupid questions)
    by AvengerRam_old
    First of all, your premise is a rumor, not a fact. But, to answer your question, Sanchez had a 20 interceptions for the Jets this year. How many do you think he would have had in the Rams offense?

    That’s a stupid question. Of course not. Any player could end up a bust. Nothing is certain.

    Are you some sort of moron? First of all, the only people who have a “concern” are fantasy football geeks, Madden players, and idiot sportswriters. You build a team in the trenches. That’s been proven over and over again. That’s what we’re doing.

    Depends on the offer, doesn’t it?

    Oher had a good year, but Smith was injured, so you can’t say at this point who the beter player is. I have faith in Smith.

    My God, you must be the dumbest man alive. What do you think, that we have every war room bugged so we know exactly what trades are being made and what who will be selected? The Jets made a good move. End of story

    You have to prioritize in this league. This year, getting Jackson some help is a priority.

    What’s with this “we” stuff. You’re not on our staff. Also, what’s a “castoff”? A young player we acquire for a late round draft choice?

    I’m sorry, I don’t respond to questions from PD Board trolls (that has to be the origin of that idiotic question).

    I certainly don’t want to be fined for tampering, so I’m not answering that.

    Didn’t read my last answer, huh?

    We play the best players. Chris needed to work his way to that position, which he did.

    Perhaps you failed to notice that our defensive backs suffered many injuries this year. Blitzing would have been a risk we didn’t need to take.

    You know nothing about Dick Curl, so why are you asking this question?

    No, we need more talented players.

    I have no idea what you are talking about.

    He started opening day, moron. The only reason he stopped playing was his injury. Seriously, did you recently suffer a head injury?

    When did I say we were going to bring him back?

    Probably by signing the best players we can.

    I don’t know. Last time I checked, he was still an active player. Besides... I thought you didn't like inexperienced coaches.

    Win more games.

    This interview? Yes. The project of rebuilding the Rams? No. ...
    -01-21-2010, 06:44 AM
  • RockinRam
    St. Louis Rams Fans Are Starving; Rams Can't Provide
    by RockinRam
    By Aaron Hooks - Contributor
    In times like these, you'd like to have something to hold on to. Some bit of hope for the future. The St. Louis Rams can't even give you that.

    Dec 6, 2011 - Let's say you're hungry. Real hungry.
    Most people get hungry, so you're in luck. There are a plethora of places to get food. In fact, I bet wherever you are, right at this very moment, you could probably get some food real quick if you wanted it.
    But 'good' food? Now that's a different story. Walk into an Aldi and 10 bucks will feed you. Actually, it'll probably feed you and a couple of friends. Probably isn't going to be the best meal you've ever had, but you will be fed. On the other hand, 10 bucks won't get you a baked potato at Morton's Steakhouse. Maybe it'll get you a napkin.
    St. Louis Rams fans are hungry. Real hungry.
    When 2011 started, we had aspirations of Morton's. Sitting at that big, oak table with a suited waiter serving up a freshly made playoff berth. As the season started slipping away, we downgraded our expectations. Week after week, we had the same grumblings in the tummy, but what we'd settle for was significantly reduced.
    After getting abused in San Fransisco on Sunday, it's evident that this team, this staff, this organization isn't willing to give us even a bone. They're watching us wither away to nothing and could care less. They've made their position clear... if you're a Rams fan, you're going to starve.
    2-10 in his third season as Head Coach, Steve Spagnuolo is going to be dismissed at the end of the season. The Rams marketing department can't sell another go at this team in 2012 without significant turnover. Fair or not, whatever your opinion, he just hasn't done anything that can be sold to the public. That's death for an NFL team.
    More disappointing to Rams is the lack of anything tangible to hold on to and pull from the rubble. The star QB has been injured and looks to be way more of a gamble than we thought 3 months ago. The start RB is a year older and more beaten up without a clear back-up in place. The offensive line is overpaid and in shambles. The other draft picks haven't shown progress.
    There isn't that one thing that makes you think twice about getting excited for 2012. And after the ***** leaped into double digit wins and buried the NFC West by December 5th—the hope is even less evident.
    The Rams are a monstrosity. Even worse, we don't know where to look for the cure. Even worse than that—2012 and 2013 are the most critical years in this franchise's history, the ones that will determine if St. Louis even has a team by the middle of this decade.
    I wish I could sit here and tell you I've got answers. That everything is going to be peachy-keen. That 2011 was an aberration, a mixture of bad luck and bad breaks. But when we were in the exact same situation after the Scott Linehan era, the same people that had input then, still have it...
    -12-06-2011, 10:55 AM
  • ram3057
    Waldner: Rams QB Jared Goff has talent, work ethic to succeed
    by ram3057
    By Mike Waldner, Columnist

    Bobby Beathard was recognized as one of the best talent evaluators as he worked his way up the food chain from scout to very-successful-belongs-in-the-Hall of Fame NFL general manager.
    When gathering information, the old El Segundo High and El Camino College quarterback made it a habit to talk to someone behind the scenes.
    In the case of Jared Goff, he who was selected at the top of the draft Thursday by the Rams, let’s use the Beathard playbook and turn to a Cal teammate.
    Our guy is Cole Webb, the former Mary Star High and El Camino College quarterback who observed closely for two years as a non-scholarship fourth QB, unofficial assistant during games and roadtrip roommate of Goff.

    Granted, this is a buddy.
    “I’m more than a little biased,” Webb said on the phone from Berkeley.
    He also is a keen observer, a bright young man with such a high football IQ that John Featherstone, his El Camino coach, urged him to consider coaching.
    Webb provides intel demonstrating that Goff is not a robo QB.
    During the UCLA game last season, Goff huddled on the bench with Webb when the Cal defense was on the field.
    “Jared would ask me if I saw anything,” Webb said. “He would ask, ‘Where did the pressure come from? What do you think we ought to do?’ If his read was the linebacker, he would ask me to watch the safety and tell him what the guy was doing.

    “He would talk to the other quarterbacks. He would talk to the receivers. He knew when to pick guys up and when to be fired up. I’ve watched him grow and improve as a leader in two years (Goff’s sophomore and junior seasons).”
    Some young athletes are so full of themselves, a trait especially widespread in the NBA, they are deaf to constructive criticism.
    Goff does not fall into this trap.
    “I was free at any time to let him know what I saw and what I thought,” Webb said. “He wanted to make sure he had the best solution.”

    While short of playing time — he was limited to two mop-up series in his two years, one each against Sacramento State and Oregon State — Webb got a head start in coaching during a season he had to sit out at El Camino due to knee surgery.
    “The experience at El Camino certainly helped me help Jared,” he said. “A lot of what I did for him is what I did holding the clipboard for Coach (Dan) Speltz (ECC’s quarterback coach-co-offensive coordinator).”
    A summary of Webb’s scouting report tells you Goff is a sponge who works hard, has a strong arm, arrives early, stays late, listens, absorbs, lives in the film room (“a film junkie”), brings instinct to knowledge and, as a bonus, even when tired willingly signs autographs for adoring children as well as breathless 40-something fans.

    He definitely knows how, when and where to deliver the football.
    -05-03-2016, 11:17 AM
  • ManofGod
    Rams free-agent preview: Safety
    by ManofGod
    By Nick Wagoner |

    EARTH CITY, Mo. -- The free-agent market is scheduled to open March 10 and teams may begin negotiations with those poised to hit the market beginning March 7. We'll count down to that with a
    position-by-position look at what the St. Louis Rams have in place, who is set to hit the market, what they might need and who might fit the bill.

    Under contract: Mark Barron, T.J. McDonald, Maurice Alexander, Cody Davis

    Pending free agents: Rodney McLeod (restricted - tendered at second-round level)


    What's needed: There probably wasn't a position group that made more noticeable progress for the Rams in 2014 than this one. McDonald got off to a rough start (aside from special teams) in coordinator Gregg Williams' defense but once the light came on, he was one of the team's best players over the final part of the season. McDonald is the ideal movable piece in Williams' scheme and should only be better as he gets deeper into the nuances of it.

    McLeod was the player most wanted upgraded last offseason, but he came back and showed signs that his arrow is still pointing up. While McLeod had some bumps along the way, including playing part on some blown coverages that led to touchdowns, but he handled the difficult job of playing a lot of single-high safety pretty well. Barron was brought in to give the Rams a chance to play more "big nickel" with three safeties on the field. It's probably safe to expect more of that moving forward as Barron was particularly proficient playing a role as a de facto third linebacker and blitzer. His role will also probably expand now that he's been around and has more time to adjust to a new defense. Alexander and Davis have been limited to special teams roles, though the Rams still have hopes for Alexander to develop into a defensive contributor. This is a young group that is still finding itself, but the pieces look to be in place with minimal investment required.

    Possible fits: There are those who would argue the Rams could use a big-time free safety capable of playing on the back end when the team goes with a single-high look. There's certainly merit to those arguments, but the Rams seem to like McLeod. If the Rams wanted to spend some money here, a guy such as New England's Devin McCourty would be awfully intriguing. McCourty figures to cash in one way or another but probably not in St. Louis. Beyond McCourty, the choices aren't all that appealing. New York's Antrel Rolle, Denver's Rahim Moore and San Diego's Marcus Gilchrist could draw some interest. For fans that love wrestler Ric Flair, Indianapolis' Sergio Brown is set to hit the market with his Flair impersonation intact.

    Verdict: Strange as it might sound given where we were a year ago, this is probably the spot on the defense that's least likely to make a substantial addition. The Barron trade was the big safety move the...
    -03-08-2015, 07:32 PM
  • r8rh8rmike
    Rams Hold First Meeting As A Team In Los Angeles
    by r8rh8rmike
    Rams hold first meeting as a team in Los Angeles

    Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald speaks at a news conference on March 4 in Manhattan Beach as the team held its first meeting in Southern California.
    (Leon Bennett / Getty Images)

    Gary Klein - Contact Reporter

    The Los Angeles Rams met for the first time as a team in Southern California on Friday, and players said they came away from the gathering with good information.

    “It was productive and it was informative,” offensive lineman Rodger Saffold said after the meeting at a Manhattan Beach hotel. “They basically gave us a general idea of what to do here.

    “But it’s still going to be a lot of work. We know that you need to be flexible. It’s a lot of changes in a short amount of time.”

    Rams Coach Jeff Fisher, General Manager Les Snead and Kevin Demoff, executive vice president of football operations, and other team executives attended the voluntary meeting.

    Demoff said the meeting enabled players to “really begin the process of what being an L.A. Ram looks like.”

    The players were shown a video of plans for the new Inglewood stadium, which is scheduled to be completed in time for the 2019 season.

    “They were hooting and hollering,” Demoff said. “They were excited, which I think makes us excited.”
    Fisher said about 80% of the roster attended the meeting.

    Players were informed that they would have off-season workouts in Oxnard, and that they probably would have training camp at UC Irvine and in-season workouts in the Thousand Oaks area.

    The off-season program begins April 18. Fisher said he addressed commuting in Southern California traffic.

    “It was just good to be here and hear from Coach and everything so we all understand what to expect and where we’re going to be at,” defensive tackle Aaron Donald said.

    Punter Johnny Hekker said the meeting was productive.

    “We’ve all been in the dark, kind of, to this point, but this meeting helped clear up a lot of stuff,” he said.

    Hekker said players and families were looking forward to the move from St. Louis to Southern California.

    “They’re a little bit sad to be leaving what’s familiar, but the sunshine and sandy beaches aren’t too bad to have waiting ahead of you,” he said. “People are pretty excited. I’ve had people hitting me up asking when I’m getting Disneyland season passes, so well see how that all shakes out.”

    Fisher said cornerback Trumaine Johnson, who received the franchise tag on Tuesday, signed a tender offer. If the Rams and Johnson do not reach agreement on a longer-term deal by July 15, Johnson will earn about $14 million next season.

    Johnson and cornerback Janoris Jenkins, also an unrestricted free agent, did not attend the meeting.
    -03-05-2016, 09:41 AM