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  • Bulger Requested Release


    For weeks — no, make that months —quarterback Marc Bulger kept his mouth shut and went about his business. He knew in all probability that his tenure in St. Louis was over but didn't raise a stink as the Rams sorted through their options at the position.

    But after Sam Bradford's boffo pro day performance March 29 at the University of Oklahoma, Bulger contacted Rams coach Steve Spagnuolo. His message? Please let me go.

    One week after Bradford's pro day, Bulger got his wish. The team released Bulger, the two-time Pro Bowler, on Monday — his 33rd birthday. The timing seems odd because all along it was assumed that the Rams would wait at least until the first day of the draft to release Bulger.

    Then again, with the No. 1 overall pick, who are the Rams bluffing? No one can select ahead of them in the draft. And after Washington's Easter Sunday trade for Philadelphia QB Donovan McNabb, the Redskins lost their status as the team most likely to trade up to No. 1.

    So with only A.J. Feeley, Keith Null and Mike Reilly now under contract at quarterback, it seems overwhelmingly obvious the Rams will take a QB in the draft. In fact, they could be ordering that blue-and-gold Sam Bradford jersey right now at Rams Park.

    "I can't speak for the Rams," said Tom Condon, the St. Louis-based agent who represents both Bradford and Bulger. "Obviously, Sam Bradford's a very highly regarded player and I'm certain that the Rams have a lot of interest in him."

    If not Bradford, who? Notre Dame's Jimmy Clausen in an upset? A trade down and selection of Colt McCoy of Texas? Those seem to be the only non-Bradford options, however remote.

    Knee-deep in draft meetings Monday, Spagnuolo and Rams general manager Billy Devaney issued only statements on Bulger's release.

    "It is always hard to part ways with someone you care for and appreciate," Spagnuolo said. "I was fortunate as a first-year head coach to have Marc on our team. I will always be indebted to him for his work ethic, character and leadership. We wish him and his family nothing but the best."

    Bulger was on hand for the first day of the team's offseason conditioning program at Rams Park, and was in the building as recently as late last week. But he knew this day was coming, and had known it for quite some time.

    After taking over for Kurt Warner on a permanent basis in 2003, Bulger led the Rams to the NFC West championship that season. The team also made the playoffs in 2004.

    But as the losses mounted, the talent level around him nose-dived. Head coaches and coordinators came and went over the succeeding seasons, and Bulger shouldered much of the blame for the team's declining fortunes.

    "I would like to thank Marc Bulger for his professional attitude," Devaney said. "Since I arrived in 2008, Marc showed leadership on the field and in the community. We appreciate all that he has done and we wish him the best."

    The combination of Bulger's declining production coupled with his big contract made him impossible to trade. He would've been due $8.5 million in base salary in 2010, as well as $9 million in 2011, $9 million in 2012 and $11.5 million in 2013.

    Now that he has been released, that contract is void and Bulger is free to negotiate a new deal with other teams.

    Condon told the Post-Dispatch he has "absolutely no concerns" about a market developing for Bulger elsewhere in the NFL.

    "Marc's very well-regarded in the league," Condon said. "He's intelligent, he knows where the ball's supposed to go, and he's very accurate. It's just a matter of getting together with Marc and seeing what he wants to do."

    Some of the potential destinations for Bulger have dried up since the start of the offseason. Denver traded for Brady Quinn, Arizona signed Derek Anderson, San Francisco added David Carr, Cleveland signed Jake Delhomme and Seattle traded for Charlie Whitehurst.

    Chicago, where former Rams head coach Mike Martz is now the offensive coordinator, could be the most logical destination for Bulger, where he would have to go in as Jay Cutler's backup.

    Martz is thought to be open to the possibility of working with Bulger. Bulger still credits Martz with most of his development as an NFL quarterback, although by the end of Martz's tenure in St. Louis (in 2005) Bulger had grown weary of Martz's hard-driving style. But that was five years ago.

    Another possibility could be Pittsburgh, Bulger's hometown, where starter Ben Roethlisberger is facing legal troubles and a potential league suspension because of allegations of sexual assault.

    Bulger did not return a phone message Monday, but Condon expressed gratitude to the Rams for how they ultimately handled Bulger's situation.

    "I think the Rams have some very strong feelings about him," Condon said. "They like him as player and person. But they thought considering the current situation that this was the appropriate thing to do."

  • #2
    Re: Bulger Requested Release

    The plot thickens...

    But seriously, it's nice to be a part of a classy organization. I'm truly proud of that and I'm glad that there's no bad blood between Bulger and the Rams.
    Always and Forever a fan of the St. Louis Rams


    • #3
      Re: Bulger Requested Release

      Feel the same way Varg - glad to be a fan of a class organization again - IMO not the case for 30 odd years.

      I also find it interesting that Marc's "$65M" Contract ended up being around $25M total, which when you think about it is pretty fair, (if you spread it out over his 9 yrears of service, and abuse-lol).


      • #4
        Re: Bulger Requested Release

        Releasing a guy is both tough and distasteful, especially when it involves a guy who has had a successful run with that team. There are countless examples in every sport of guys who left their original teams with bad feelings because it was not handled correctly. Sometimes the team handled it poorly and impersonally, and sometimes the player simply has sour grapes. It is never easy on either party.

        One hopes that a team can tactfully release a player, wish him well and move on. And it appears that the Rams went about it the right way here. By releasing Bulger now, they honored his wishes for a release while giving him a longer window to find work (which of course, he will). Plus, with the same agent representing Bulger and Sam Bradford, it certainly didn't stand to help the Rams by stringing Bulger along- if in fact they end up drafting Bradford.

        I wish Bulger well. He will land on his feet and probably be productive.


        • #5
          Re: Bulger Requested Release

          the title says Bulger requested release..but i dont see that in the article...


          • #6
            Re: Bulger Requested Release

            Originally posted by Ramblin` Ram View Post
            the title says Bulger requested release..but i dont see that in the article...
            I'll help ya out

            But after Sam Bradford's boffo pro day performance March 29 at the University of Oklahoma, Bulger contacted Rams coach Steve Spagnuolo. His message? Please let me go.


            • #7
              Re: Bulger Requested Release

              I like how all of sudden everyone is so sympathetic of Marc Bulger after all these years of people trash talking on Bulger. Wish him the best on hope he revives his career elsewhere.


              • #8
                Re: Bulger Requested Release

                Originally posted by cfh128 View Post
                I'll help ya out
                haha..thanks..damn my bourbon eyes!!!


                • #9
                  Re: Bulger Requested Release

                  Goodbye Bulger !! I wish you best,,as long as its not in the NFC West


                  • #10
                    Re: Bulger Requested Release

                    Originally posted by AlwaysBackwards View Post
                    I like how all of sudden everyone is so sympathetic of Marc Bulger after all these years of people trash talking on Bulger.
                    everyone agrees on nothing..other than perhaps how great a player Jax is..
                    maybe those who wanted him out for so long dont feel the need to add anymore now that their long term wishes have finally come true..

                    me personally i was never a big Bulger supporter or "hater"...i just dont feel that strong about individual players anymore...i want the players that are best suited to drive our chariot to victory and to do so with integrity and class.

                    thats not to say i don`t appreciate every players efforts to honour the horns regardless of how productive they are long as the effort has been there they have my best wishes when they leave..


                    • #11
                      Re: Bulger Requested Release

                      Originally posted by AlwaysBackwards View Post
                      I like how all of sudden everyone is so sympathetic of Marc Bulger after all these years of people trash talking on Bulger. Wish him the best on hope he revives his career elsewhere.
                      Sympathetic? No. It's called good grace. Despite the criticism leveled at Bulger over the years, many of us feel compelled to nonetheless acknowledge his years of service by wishing him well and treating his release with the same class he displayed through good times and bad. There is nothing hypocritical about that. It's simply tactless to dredge up the negative at this time.


                      • #12
                        Re: Bulger Requested Release

                        Reported on Sirius NFL---Agent says Bulger being released was a perfect birthday present.

                        I think this might be a little overstated. Will Bulger land with any team prior to Draft day? What are the chance he will be a starter? He will probably end up being a back-up somewhere, and earning less than his contract guarantee in St. Louis.

                        Is there a commitment in the Ram's org to start Bradford no matter what? Otherwise, this does not really seem 'perfect' to me.
                        A defeated look of consternation, dissappointment, or even pain. The name derives from the look one often gets when challenged by a large BM.


                        • #13
                          Re: Bulger Requested Release

                          Originally posted by AlwaysBackwards View Post
                          I like how all of sudden everyone is so sympathetic of Marc Bulger after all these years of people trash talking on Bulger. Wish him the best on hope he revives his career elsewhere.
                          Excatly, I have been a bulger fan for a while. I would love to see him go to a new team and take their ass to the Superbowl. I wonder what all the Bulger bashers would have to say then.


                          • #14
                            Re: Bulger Requested Release

                            That Bulger had little to do with it probably.
                            "I've been saving the Universe for over a thousand years. I figure it owes me just this once."


                            Related Topics


                            • r8rh8rmike
                              Bulger Finally Escapes Rams Park
                              by r8rh8rmike
                              Bulger finally escapes Rams Park

                              By Jeff Gordon
                              STLTODAY.COM SPORTS COLUMNIST

                              Marc Bulger is free at last. You should feel happy for him, not sad.

                              His inevitable departure finally occurred Monday, under cover of the Cardinals’ Opening Day. The Rams cashiered Bulger and turned the page on his increasingly frustrating quarterback era.

                              Bulger, who also turned 33 on Monday, can pursue a back-up role with a good team (his best option) or sign up to compete for work for another bad team.

                              Marc should be delighted, despite losing his chance to collect $8.5 million from the Rams this season. He did what he could for this franchise, sacrificing his body in the process.

                              Bulger threw for a lot of yards here (22,814) and made a couple of Pro Bowls. He led the Rams to the playoffs and dazzled fans during the good days with his pinpoint passing accuracy.

                              Try as he might, though, he could not prevent the spectacular collapse of this once-great football team. He could not convince Alex Barron to remember every snap count. He could not get in sync with Donnie Avery’s free-lance route running.

                              He didn’t yell and wave enough on the sideline to appease Rams fans. Many of them believed Bulger just didn’t care enough to raise his voice.

                              The Rams staggered to 3-13, 2-14 and 1-15 finishes during the last three years on his watch and that relentless failure took a toll on everybody.

                              He became the fall guy, figuratively (in the forums, chat rooms and sports talk radio shows) and literally (with one violent injury after another). Offensive coordinators and head coaches came and went during that span, but Bulger stayed put, taking the heat and the punishment.

                              Marshall Faulk, Isaac Bruce, Torry Holt and Orlando Pace left . . . but Bulger remained behind, trapped, as an unpopular reminder of better times. The guaranteed portion of his $65 million contract kept him on the job longer than was prudent for either side.

                              The Rams refused to release Bulger after the season even though the entire free world knew he was finished here as quarterback. Other NFL quarterbacks were turned out or traded by their teams, but Bulger had to pretend he was wanted at Rams Park.

                              This team held out hope that he could somehow become a trade chip, despite his unwieldy salary. When the big-spending Redskins landed Donovan McNabb, that pipe dream ended abruptly.

                              His emancipation came not long after the Rams took a good look at Oklahoma star Sam Bradford at his college day workout and planned his private pre-draft session.

                              (To be safe, the Rams are also taking a long look at Texas quarterback Colt McCoy. This team could still trade out of the first overall pick in the right scenario.)

                              “It is always hard to part ways with someone you care for...
                              -04-06-2010, 05:00 PM
                            • r8rh8rmike
                              Bulger Admits This Is His Last Chance
                              by r8rh8rmike
                              Bulger admits this is his last chance
                              by Alex Marvez

                              Updated: June 18, 2009

                              EARTH CITY, Mo. - Quarterbacks like Marc Bulger sometimes don't get a second chance.

                              Rarely will they get a third.

                              This isn't lost on Bulger when the subject is broached inside an office at St. Louis Rams headquarters. The franchise has won just five games in two seasons — the NFL's longest stretch of futility for a non-expansion team since the 1995-1996 New York Jets. That's usually enough losing to trigger a change under center.

                              Bulger got a mulligan last offseason when the Rams passed on drafting Matt Ryan, instead selecting DE Chris Long No. 2 overall. But after another miserable season, the Rams could very well have opted to start from scratch at the position.

                              They didn't. Then this spring St. Louis eschewed acquiring another veteran starter or selecting a quarterback with the second overall pick in April's draft.

                              For this, Bulger is grateful. But he also knows the Rams aren't going to have much more patience without a relatively quick turnaround.

                              "I understand we have to win," Bulger told after a recent offseason practice. "It's not fair to our fans or the ownership. If we don't, I know it starts with me.

                              "It's probably my final chance."

                              Bulger and defensive end Leonard Little are the last player ties to the franchise's glory days from early this decade. Both are the only remaining members of the 2001 Rams that were upset by New England in Super Bowl XXXV. Bulger went from reserve to starter the following season when replacing an injured Kurt Warner and won the position outright in 2003. For a spell, Bulger was considered in the upper tier of NFL quarterbacks.

                              But while Warner has since reinvented himself in Arizona, the 32-year-old Bulger has faded in what should be the prime of his career. Playing behind a shoddy offensive line, Bulger has completed a full 16-game season just once while being sacked 228 times in a six-year span.

                              At same time, the franchise around Bulger has crumbled because of poor personnel decisions and ineffective head coaching. Team owner Georgia Frontiere died in January 2008, leaving an uncertain future for the club in St. Louis.

                              "I remember when we were winning, the days were longer and it was fun coming in," Bulger said. "You go out to eat with your buddies and tell stories. But the last two years when you're losing every week, you just go home after. You don't celebrate. You think, 'What did I do?'

                              "The whole building had a different feeling. Not just the players, but everybody used to want to come to work and be part of the Rams. It just seems like when you lose, people wanted to start to disassociate themselves. There's supposed to be some fun involved in professional...
                              -06-18-2009, 08:06 PM
                            • r8rh8rmike
                              Bulger Values Another Chance To Shine
                              by r8rh8rmike
                              By Jeffri Chadiha

                              ST. LOUIS -- It isn't hard to determine the smartest move made by new St. Louis Rams head coach Steve Spagnuolo so far -- it involved a candid talk with quarterback Marc Bulger.

                              Spagnuolo got right to the point after meeting with Bulger at Rams headquarters a few months ago. Bulger didn't have to worry about the Rams looking for another quarterback this offseason. He was the man, Spagnuolo told him, and that's all he needed to know.

                              This was an invaluable endorsement because Bulger needed to understand the organization was behind him this year. He'd had two subpar seasons and the Rams easily could have selected a quarterback with the second overall pick in this year's draft.

                              As Bulger said: "I think it was important for me to hear that. This team has changed so much over the last few years that a new coach could've come in and decided he didn't like me at all. I wouldn't say that it put me at ease. But it definitely allowed me to just go out and focus on my work."

                              What Bulger clearly realizes is that he's reached a critical juncture in his career. He's a 32-year-old quarterback who's thrown 28 interceptions and 22 touchdowns over the past two seasons for a team that won five games during that span. Numbers like those don't make people wonder if a guy is just going through a long slump. Those numbers inspire clamor for a new quarterback.

                              That's the kind of scrutiny Bulger is facing in St. Louis these days. Over the past two years, the Rams have hired a new coach and a new general manager (Billy Devaney). That means all eyes will turn to Bulger if the Rams continue to show no signs of improvement, even with Spagnuolo's endorsement. But what's important to remember about Bulger is that he should be up to the challenge, particularly because he's used to thriving when there are doubters all around him.

                              This is a man who became a successful starter at West Virginia after no other school offered him a Division I scholarship. The New Orleans Saints also gave up on Bulger after making him a sixth-round pick in 2000 and the Atlanta Falcons kept him on their practice squad for just two weeks shortly thereafter. By the time Bulger wound up in St. Louis as a third-string quarterback in 2001, nobody was giving him a shot to be a difference-maker in the league. The bottom line: This isn't a guy you write off easily.

                              Even when Bulger was at his best in St. Louis -- he's led the Rams to two playoff appearances in his seven seasons as a starter -- he had to operate in a town that never really embraced him. His first problem was that he was the man who replaced Kurt Warner, who was a beloved figure. Bulger's second issue was that his play declined as the team fell apart under former head coach Scott Linehan.

                              Last season after an 0-3 start, Bulger briefly lost his starting job to Trent Green....
                              -06-03-2009, 06:57 PM
                            • RamWraith
                              Marc Bulger has lost the touch as Rams quarterback
                              by RamWraith
                              By Bernie Miklasz
                              ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
                              Monday, Dec. 01 2008
                              Fighting hard all afternoon and poised to spring an upset, the Rams needed
                              someone to step forward, make a play and steal Sunday from the Miami Dolphins.

                              Miami's precarious 16-12 lead was hanging within reach, an easy capture. The
                              Rams required a singular act of brilliance. Someone who could convert hope into
                              victory by offering a few seconds of Joe Montana, a two-minute tribute to John
                              Unitas, a mad dash of Roger Staubach or a touch of John Elway's golden arm.

                              Just one magic moment.

                              The Rams were down by less than a touchdown throughout the entire second half.
                              They had some things working in their favor. The running attack was boosted by
                              the return of Steven Jackson, the pass protection was solid and the defense
                              repeatedly made stops.

                              Now it was time for a winner to sign in and take over. The money quarterbacks
                              live for these situations. Give them the ball and a chance and they'll take
                              care of the rest. Their careers are defined by these late, daring, all-in bids
                              at the final poker table.

                              And then there is Marc Bulger.

                              Who can't help what he is.

                              Bulger had the magic stomped out of him a long time ago.

                              Bulger has been drained of the possibility of summoning Montana, Staubach or
                              Elway — if even for just one clutch throw.

                              If Bulger is Unitas, he's the sad Johnny U. we saw in the San Diego Chargers
                              uniform, taking a whupping in the final phase of his career.

                              Bulger was back on the field Sunday, a week after having his brain scrambled by
                              the Chicago Bears.

                              Put it this way: A boxing commission wouldn't have allowed the man to step into
                              the ring.

                              So we don't have to remind you how things turned out, right?

                              Three second-half interceptions, and only 16 completions in 35 attempts overall
                              for 149 skimpy yards.

                              A QB rating of 22.2 for the afternoon.

                              Bulger was unable to emerge from the fog and make a play when his team needed
                              it most.

                              The outcome was as predictable as the tendencies picked up by appreciative
                              Dolphins defenders. "A lot of the time their quarterback would stare down a
                              guy, and it gave our guys a chance to get in the passing window and make a
                              play," Miami cornerback Renaldo Hill said. "It seemed like when he had
                              (receivers) locked in, you knew the ball was going there if you could just get
                              a jump or take a gamble here and there. Because you know where the ball was
                              going. He wasn't doing much looking off."

                              Other than getting a chance to play against the Mizzou secondary each Sunday, I
                              don't know how Bulger can pull out of this two-season...
                              -12-01-2008, 05:08 AM
                            • r8rh8rmike
                              Bernie: Time Right To Let Beat-Up Bulger Go?
                              by r8rh8rmike
                              Time right to let beat-up Bulger go?

                              Sports Columnist Bernie Miklasz
                              ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH

                              When Marc Bulger took over as starting quarterback for the Rams, life was good. Bulger was able to carry on a winning tradition for a while. He led the remnants of the "Greatest Show on Turf" to a 12-4 record in 2003, and appeared to be a legitimate successor to a beaten-down Kurt Warner.

                              In perhaps his finest singular highlight, Bulger threw a beautiful, precise pass to tight end Cam Cleeland for the winning touchdown to lead the Rams to a thrilling victory at Seattle in the 2004 NFC wild-card game. Bulger played well in 2006 and signed a six-year, $65 million contract extension in the summer of '07. The job had its rewards, that's for sure.

                              But all along, Bulger was in a precarious situation. The franchise was about to blow up, and Bulger happened to be the quarterback standing near the tripwire. He wasn't going to be able to survive the carnage, not without paying a severe price.

                              When Bulger slowly limped off the field at the Edward Jones Dome on Sunday, he carried the weight of another Rams loss. The comeback stalled; Arizona knocked out Bulger and the Rams 21-13. Bulger was in pain ... again. The most serious of the injuries, a broken shin bone, was discovered Monday in an MRI exam.

                              We may have seen the last of Bulger in a Rams uniform. He'll be sidelined for three to six weeks. The Rams (1-9) have only six games remaining, and it would be crazy to play him and expose him to more punishment.

                              I've been critical of Bulger the last two-plus seasons. The quality of his performance declined rapidly since the end of the 2006 season. But I'm not without empathy. Much of Bulger's downfall can be explained by the circumstances surrounding him.

                              I think I came up with the term "Battered Quarterback Syndrome" and applied it to Bulger. A quarterback can absorb only so many body slams, cracks to the ribs and blows to the head before he loses effectiveness.

                              Bulger became the favorite rag doll of NFL pass rushers. He's been sacked 242 times since the start of the 2003 season, the most among NFL quarterbacks. And that doesn't include the hundreds of times he got drilled while releasing throws.

                              If this is it for Bulger, then what is his legacy?

                              A sad one.

                              With excessive amounts of pain, frustration and losing.

                              Bulger had to replace the eternally popular Warner — a thankless task for obvious reasons. The Rams were 40-17 with Warner as a starter, advanced to two Super Bowls and won Super Bowl XXXIV. Moreover, Warner was a two-time league MVP and a Super Bowl MVP.

                              Best of luck living up to that standard. Any quarterback who followed Warner would have to deal with baggage, comparisons and resentment. It's always...
                              -11-25-2009, 10:55 PM