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Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

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  • Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

    Bradford would be a player, not a savior

    By Jeff Gordon

    Many Rams fans are rallying around Sam Bradford as the magic-wand solution to this team’s woeful offense. They are eager for change, and the personable Oklahoma star is certainly a fine quarterback prospect.

    But this franchise’s recent QB history reminds fans to maintain some perspective.

    Will Bradford ever be as good as Kurt Warner, a two-time NFL MVP and Super Bowl hero? Warner set the standard for quarterback play in his era, yet his time in St. Louis ended badly.

    Opponents beat him into submission. The Rams benched him, then sent him packing. When Warner left St. Louis, team officials -– and many NFL experts -– insisted that he was finished.

    Not only did he have “battered quarterback syndrome,” which rendered him skittish in the pocket, but his oft-fractured right hand made him fumble-prone.

    Will Bradford ever be as good as Marc Bulger, a two-time Pro Bowl honoree with 22,814 career passing yards?

    Bulger had been one of the most accurate quarterbacks in this decade . . . until opponents beat him into submission. He, too, appeared to suffer from battered quarterback syndrome the last few seasons. Now Bulger, like Warner before him, appears headed toward an unhappy ending with this franchise.

    These aren’t a couple of snot-nosed kids who washed out here.

    Both guys were let go by their first teams (Packers and Saints). Both guys had to work their way up from the No. 3 role here, doing all the thankless supporting-cast work. Both guys had to battle to become No. 2 quarterbacks.

    Both guys responded spectacularly when they finally got their chance to start, after extensive preparations. Both guys led talented Rams teams into postseason play.

    And then both guys went the wrong way, for a variety of reasons.

    So what could we reasonably expect of Bradford if he stepped into this world?

    The kid has an accurate arm. He is smart, too. He showed great character trying to come back from his shoulder injury. He literally took one for the team.

    His resume is spectacular. But Bradford is a long way from being ready to elevate a bad team -– a task, by the way, which got the better of Warner (in 2002) and Bulger (2007, 08, 09).

    If the Rams draft Bradford, EVERYBODY needs to maintain their perspective through all the hoopla that will ensue. Sam would step into the same job that ate up Pro Bowlers -– and he would step into it at the worst possible time.

    That is a lot to put on any young man. “Fans get caught up thinking one guy -– as good as he could be -– is going to change the whole culture of an organization in a short period of time,” Warner observed Tuesday.

    That is just not a realistic proposition. Warner tutored prized prospect Eli Manning with a pretty good Giants team, then mentored former USC star Matt Leinart in Arizona.

    “With guys who are the No. 1 pick, they’re not going into great situations.” Warner said. “They aren’t going to a team that is one player away -– and yet everybody thinks they are the one person who can turn it around.”

    Sometimes progress comes quickly. Mark Sanchez fought through adversity with the Jets and reached postseason play, albeit with a team that had a great offensive line, a great running game and a dominant defense.

    Manning developed well with the Giants. Matt Ryan and Joe Flacco are success stories, although neither went to terrible teams. Vince Young may be coming on now, after originally freaking out.

    Peyton Manning and, a long time ago, Troy Aikman are two more positive examples.

    But JaMarcus Russell is a mess in Oakland. Ryan Leaf imploded in San Diego. Cade McNown and Akili Smith blew up, as did Joey Harrington and Brady Quinn. Alex Smith is still trying to find himself.

    “They get thrown by the wayside two or three years down the road because their teams didn’t turn around,” Warner said. “And it’s not always their fault.”

    All of this is pause for thought. If the Rams are destined to take Bradford, fine, but everybody needs to keep their expectations in check. Bradford would be a player here, not a savior.

  • #2
    Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

    What about Suh? Would that make him a savior (if chosen)?

    ♪ R.I.P. Nujabes ♫


    • #3
      Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

      Are people really calling him ahte franchise savior, or are they assuming fans are this stupid to believe one guy will come and dominate like he did in college...

      Not sure fans expect an undefeated season next season because of a Bradford addition.

      Adding another crucial piece to the puzzle certainly wouldn't hurt us though...


      • #4
        Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

        True true, football's a team sport and the players need to be on the same page in order to be successful. I don't think Bradford in the first two or three years will be an impact player but should show some flashes during that period. If we give him the time like Drew Brees and Peyton Manning were given to develop, then he could be a Pro-Bowl caliber QB.

        ♪ R.I.P. Nujabes ♫


        • #5
          Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

          Maybe not the ideal situation for Bradford to step into .... isn't that why we signed Feely? ;)
          If a team won their division seven straight times, that would be a NFL record. Now add on that team did it with seven different QB's in seven straight years,that record is unbeatable. To do that feat, you must of had a great Defense. Jack Youngblood was the captain of that defense.


          • #6
            Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

            This article touches on what I mentioned in a post last week. QBs usually don't pan out to be the great NFL players that their #1 or #2 draft selection would suggest. Some will not pan out at all, while others will take years to develop. I can only suggest that the reason for the low success rate when compared to other positions, is due to the QB position's high demand for talent and responsibility. I feel that our chances for a successful #1 draft pick are greatly enhanced with the selection of Suh, who in my opinion would be a a success from game 1. We can make due at the QB position with a Derek Anderson, Lefttwich or Tarvaris Jackson who can also scramble or at least step out of the pocket, unlike Bulger. I'd hate to give up such a high prospect like Suh, given the past history of throw-aways like Warner, Brees and Doug Williams, who have taken their respective teams to the promised land. Give me Suh or give me a refund!
            Last edited by LA2STL; -03-30-2010, 10:29 PM.


            • #7
              Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

              I disagree. Vehemently.

              We're not only drafting Sam Bradford the football player, we're drafting Sam Bradford the ideology. In my opinion, we're drafting the idea that this one player will be the face of our resurgence: Our Napoleon Bonaparte, our Commander in Chief, our entire kitchen sink. We're drafting the idea that this player, as good as he is, will be the one to throw our franchise over his shoulder and reverse our fortunes. Obviously he'll need help, but there is no denying that Quarterback is the most important position in the NFL. We're drafting the idea that he is deservedly the most important piece of our football puzzle. He's not the last piece to be put into place, but if we draft Sam Bradford, he will be the most important piece. The biggest piece, which all other pieces will slide into like a concubine. That doesn't mean instantaneous success. It means long term success and a winning team for the best part of the next decade.

              In my opinion, when you're drafting a QB, you're drafting him to be the saviour of your franchise. If you're not drafting a QB with this intention at heart, you probably shouldn't be drafting one at all.


              • #8
                Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

                Originally posted by Dwight Frye View Post
                Maybe not the ideal situation for Bradford to step into .... isn't that why we signed Feely? ;)
                No, we signed him because he knows Philly's offense better than Shurmur.


                • #9
                  Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

                  If im mining for silver but also need gold, and gold is more valuable than silver, you best believe when im mining for that silver, if i see a piece of this rare gold, im going to get that piece of gold at the expense of a piece of silver.

                  I realize that in the time it takes me to mine this gold I could miss out on a good bit of silver, but this gold is something that doesn't come around all the time and I could either never find it again or it could take me years to do so.


                  • #10
                    Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

                    So the gold is Suh, and Bradford is silver?

                    Suh has the potential to be the best at his position. No-one has said the same about Bradford


                    • #11
                      Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

                      Devin Hester was the best at his original position and arguably the best ever in that stretch. He played Kick Returner. People compare Bradford and his attributes to Peyton and Aikman. Honestly tell me you would pass either for Devin Hester because he was the best at his POSITION. Who gives a rats arse if someone COULD (extremely big COULD because once again you seem to be assuming Suh will come in and destroy NFL lineman like he did college ones, and only did it some of the times at that) come in and be the best at a position if that position is less valued and less of a need than our other option, Bradford who (even though it means little to me) has been compared to Manning and Aikman. Ill take either over Reggie White all day and twice on Sunday. A great defensive tackle increases your chances to win. A great QB always gives you a chance to win.


                      • #12
                        Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

                        Originally posted by fliptalianstallion View Post
                        What about Suh? Would that make him a savior (if chosen)?
                        That's an interesting point. I don't think anyone thought that, when we had Suh as our consensus number one pick a couple of months ago, he was going to be our savior and turn everything around. We knew he would be a playmaker yes, but he wouldn't automatically turn everything around for us. Yet the same is seemingly not for Bradford. It seems that the thought is he is our "savior" and will single handedly bring this team back into contention. Of course I know the realities of the QB position being more important than the DT position, but I also know that this is a team game, and takes 22 men to do the job right.

                        I fail to see how one pick will turn around a team any more than another so significantly, regardless of the player picked there. (This is of course assuming that they both pan out.)

                        This is neither an argument against Bradford or for Suh, but rather an observation on the perceived importance of the franchise quarterback. Rarely is there any mention (outside of the clan it seems) of who Bradford would be throwing to, or who would be protecting him on the offensive line. It seems to me that these should be equally important factors to consider.


                        • #13
                          Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

                          How many "there's no guarantee that _______" articles do we really need?

                          We get it. There is no guarantee that any future event will occur. Sportswriters are not exactly breaking new ground with these "revelations."


                          • #14
                            Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

                            Whoever we get will be a step in the ..................right direction?


                            • #15
                              Re: Bradford Would Be A Player, Not A Savior

                              Blues are six points back of Colorado for the 8th playoff spot, Mizzou bowed out early in the tourney, Illinois didn't make the tourney, Cardinal baseball is a week away. It's a slow time for sportswriters so they have to fill it up with something.


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                              • r8rh8rmike
                                Sam Bradford Facing High-Stakes '14
                                by r8rh8rmike
                                Sam Bradford facing high-stakes '14

                                If fifth-year QB can't stay healthy and produce, Rams should seek other solutions

                                Published: April 21, 2014
                                By Jeffri Chadiha |

                                Regardless of whether the St. Louis Rams select a quarterback in this year's draft -- and there have been recent rumblings, specifically by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, that such a move could happen -- Sam Bradford already should know what's at stake this coming season.

                                There's no question he's a likable guy with obvious talent. It's also impossible to argue that tough breaks and a subpar supporting cast on offense have plagued him during his brief career. These are the variables that often arise when discussing Bradford's lack of success in St. Louis, and this is the year when it's time for his supporters to stop leaning on them.

                                As much as there is to appreciate about Bradford, the fact still remains that the Rams haven't enjoyed a winning season in the four years since he became their starting quarterback. That means something has to change this fall, especially since it's critical that the 26-year-old Bradford takes a major step in his development. He's gone from being impressive (he was the 2010 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year) to inconsistent (during the one year he spent with former offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels) to injured (he sustained a torn ACL in Week 7 of last season). It's time for Bradford to produce the kind of season that makes everybody believe he's still the right man for the job.

                                If you probe the Rams about that possibility, they will tell you all the right things. When asked about the confidence the team has in Bradford's future, a team source said "there was no concern" while adding that Bradford "is a very good quarterback."

                                On the other hand, the Post-Dispatch said the Rams have met with University of Pittsburgh quarterback Tom Savage, while another meeting/workout also reportedly occurred with Fresno State's Derek Carr. The paper also floated names such as South Carolina's Connor Shaw and Georgia's Aaron Murray as talents who could interest St. Louis come draft week.

                                It's not surprising that the Rams would be intrigued by some of the signal-callers in this class. Once you get beyond the top three players at that position -- Blake Bortles, Teddy Bridgewater and Johnny Manziel -- there are still going to be some talents to be had in the later rounds. It's also true that drafting a quarterback doesn't mean a team is actually giving up on the one it already has under center. But in this case, should the Rams actually spend a second- or third-day pick on a signal-caller, they have to know the discussions about Bradford's future will only intensify.

                                Head coach Jeff Fisher and general manager Les Snead will have to deal with that fallout if that scenario actually plays out. Even if it doesn't,...
                                -04-22-2014, 09:57 AM
                              • MauiRam
                                Bernie: It's time to refocus expectations about Bradford ..
                                by MauiRam
                                By Bernie Miklasz

                                We’ve been stewing over quarterbacks in our town since the Bidwill family moved the Chicago Cardinals here in 1960. Cardinal or Ram — you name him, and we’ve probably argued over him. Sam Etcheverry, Charley Johnson, Gary Cuozzo, Jim Hart, Steve Pisarkiewicz, Neil Lomax, Kurt Warner, Marc Bulger.

                                I can’t imagine that any St. Louis quarterback has been debated more than Sam Bradford, who is preparing for his fifth season as the Rams’ starter.

                                Bradford is only 26, but already is one of the most experienced quarterbacks in St. Louis NFL history. If you combine the Cardinals’ and Rams’ seasons here, only four quarterbacks have attempted more regular-season passes for the St. Louis franchise than Bradford: Hart, Bulger, Lomax and Johnson.

                                I’m sorry to go against the grain, but I don’t see 2014 as a “make or break” season for Bradford.

                                Instead, I see Bradford as entering a new phase in his career.

                                You see, I’ve adjusted my expectations.

                                The days of demanding that Bradford become Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers or Drew Brees are over. Bradford isn’t the kind of quarterback that can elevate a franchise in a dramatic way.

                                But this doesn’t mean Sam can’t become Phil Simms or Jim Plunkett.

                                And there’s nothing wrong with that. Both quarterbacks played admirably and won Super Bowls later in their careers after getting curb-stomped and nearly broken in the service of rebuilding, overmatched teams.

                                Bradford has run the gamut in St. Louis. He was the franchise savior when he arrived as the first player picked in the 2010 NFL draft. Then he became the under-duress quarterback trapped behind a mediocre offensive line and a revolving door of owners, head coaches, general managers and offensive coordinators.

                                Bradford never has had a Mel Gray, Jackie Smith, Pat Tilley, Roy Green, Isaac Bruce, Torry Holt or Ricky Proehl to catch his passes.

                                He never ran a passing game designed by Don Coryell or Mike Martz.

                                He never had Dan Dierdorf or Orlando Pace protecting him.

                                He never handed the ball off to Terry Metcalf or Marshall Faulk. (Steven Jackson already was entering the downside of his career during Bradford’s early years.)

                                This isn’t an excuse; it’s reality. For Bradford, it’s been a career of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. A truly special quarterback might have been able to overcome all of that, but Bradford isn’t that guy.

                                But I’m convinced that Bradford can be effective — and a winner — with an enhanced mix of talent and coaching. That seems like faint praise, but honestly that’s not my intention.

                                I’ve spent four seasons hoping that Bradford could develop into the next Manning or Brady or the Warner that triggered the “Greatest Show” Rams. But at some point you just have to accept...
                                -08-06-2014, 10:57 PM
                              • NJ Ramsfan1
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                                -11-10-2012, 01:18 AM
                              • swatter555
                                Less worried about Bradford these days
                                by swatter555
                                Drafting an unproven in the NFL QB to a massive contract is a tough thing do. In a general sense, I think focusing on settling our QB issues should be the Ram's most important focus. Certainly that seems what we are about to do, but drafting a less than stellar QB or even a bust is such a huge concern considering the dollars we would have been putting up.

                                I have been doing some research on recent QB busts and in retrospect there were often warning signs that were overlooked because physical talent was so great. Physical talent was always there, but the busts almost always had character flaws or weren't all that smart. In retropect it is no doubt easier to spot those things, but they were often purposely overlooked.

                                After reading about Bradford and watching his interviews, he is a smart kid with a good head on his shoulders. His intangibles seem to be really high. Everyday that passes I am a little less worried and think he will do at least very well. Of course signing him to that contract, you expect him to be a superstar, but lets just take that one step at a time.

                                At this point, I think there is a good chance he will be the best thing to happen to the Rams since we got Marshall Faulk and Kurt Warner emerged.
                                -04-18-2010, 01:59 AM
                              • MauiRam
                                Rams have something special in Bradford ..
                                by MauiRam
                                By Jason Cole, Yahoo! Sports

                                The telling sign of where the St. Louis Rams have gotten to this season was displayed two Sundays ago in Tampa, more apparent in defeat than in their recent victory against Carolina.

                                In the aftermath of an 18-17 defeat in Week 7, the bowed heads and dejected looks were an indication of one thing: The St. Louis Rams have expectations.

                                This is what a great quarterback – or at least the early indications of greatness – can do for a team. While beating the Panthers kept St. Louis (4-4) within a half-game of the NFC West lead, it wasn’t surprising to the Rams. What was shocking was the week before, when they dropped a fourth-quarter lead to the Bucs.

                                As the locker room doors opened, barely any of the players looked up as reporters walked in. There was only the feeling of dashed hope.

                                There was no feeling that, even after going 6-42 the previous three seasons, the team had accomplished something significant. The Rams are ahead of the pace they set over the past three years, but mere signs of competitiveness are not enough. Sam Bradford’s presence and preternatural skills have instilled a different mindset in St. Louis.

                                While Bradford, who guided the Rams to a win over Carolina last Sunday with a great show of patience against a bend-but-don’t break defense, and St. Louis aren’t close to greatness by a long shot, the gravel seems to be on the road. The Rams’ roster is bereft of proven talent – particularly at wide receiver and tight end – but the Rams are also a long way from the stumbling, bumbling mess that went 1-15 last season.

                                Even when Bradford stumbles.

                                His performance in the Tampa loss was a perfect example. Up 10-3 and facing a third-and-goal from the Tampa Bay 2-yard line, Bradford peeled out of the pocket on a roll right after a play-action fake. He tripped, his lanky 6-foot-4, 228-pound frame momentarily looking something like a giraffe gone goofy.

                                No panic. Bradford caught himself, regained his composure and found rookie tight end Michael Hoomanawanui for the score, a tight spiral in the perfect spot to the moving target.

                                “Great play for a guy that young,” said St. Louis fullback Mike Karney, who spent three years playing with Drew Brees in New Orleans before coming to St. Louis last season. “It’s not just that, it’s everything he does. His arm, his leadership, his athletic ability. Whatever that ‘it’ factor is, he has it.”

                                Overall, that was one of a half-dozen times that Bradford rolled right to set up a throw in that game. That may not seem astounding, but one of the main criticisms of Bradford before he was taken No. 1 overall in April’s draft was that he had never operated from under center, instead playing in shotgun his whole career at Oklahoma in a spread-formation attack.

                                So much for that concern. In less than half a season, Bradford...
                                -11-04-2010, 07:42 PM