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Great News, we are officially a mediocre, middle of the pack NFL team

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  • Great News, we are officially a mediocre, middle of the pack NFL team

    Over the first six games of the Bradford era, the rams have clearly established themselves as a solidly mediocre NFL team that is obviously on the way up. This is a HUGE step considering that we won a total of 3 games in the prior two years.

    By beating San Diego, we have shown that we can beat a playoff caliber team. Our performance in the first half yesterday was nfc championship caliber football. You can't play much better on defense and offense than we played in the first half yesterday, albeit with a couple of breaks (ie a couple of drops by the SD defense that could have been INT's and a HUGE drop by Gates on a perfect third and long throw by Rivers over the middle). For the game, we had seven sacks and no turnovers, in addition to a blocked field goal and a terrific interception in the end zone. With the game on the line, we imposed our will on the chargers and the Big Boy ran the ball down their throats to run out the clock, despite the obvious nature of the play calling. We have improved a great deal in a short time despite crippling injuries at a key offensive position (WR) where we were already lacking a #1 before anyone got hurt. As with almost every team at any level of football, dramatically improved line play on both sides of the ball has been a critical consideration in our ascension.

    It should be apparant to the entire NFL that the Rams are a very competitive home team. We are going to beat more good teams at home as the year moves on and the fans enthusiasm can only help the Rams feed off their effort yesterday.

    The next test for improvement is consistency and the ability to win on the road. If we can play a full game like we played the first half yesterday, the sky is the limit. We have lost two games that we could have easily won, and frankly, we almost let a win slip away yesterday with wildly conservative play calling in the second half (like we were playing not to lose, rather than trying to win). As well as we played defensively, allowing an 80 yard drive in 40 seconds at a key point in the fourth quarter is something that we can improve on quite a bit. I am sure no one wanted to see Rivers get the ball back with three time outs left only needing a field goal. The Rams have shown dominance in flashes this year, we need to learn to finish teams off and to play more consistently. Playing well on the road is a tough task for all NFL teams, we will see if the Rams can answer the call this weekend in what has to be considered a "winnable" road game at Tampa Bay. If we can respond vs Tampa and beat Carolina (which we should do), we are 5-3 heading into the bye week, a result that i doubt anyone could have projected.

    In short, we have come an awfully long way in a short time and if we want to take the next step this season (rather than in the future), we are going to have to win on the road. For now, the Rams fall solidly into the category of "any given sunday." We can beat anyone if we bring our A game, especially if teams look past us and are not ready to play.

    By the way, the non call on the hit to Bradford's head was the most ridiculous miss by a ref i have seen in probaby 30 years. The call was out in the open, directly in front of the official and the tackler obviously led with his head and made contact in the head. Makeup call notwithstanding, Helen Keller could have seen the hit to the head.

    Ramming speed to all

    general counsel

  • #2
    Re: Great News, we are officially a mediocre, middle of the pack NFL team

    Originally posted by general counsel View Post
    Over the first six games of the Bradford era, the rams have clearly established themselves as a solidly mediocre NFL team that is obviously on the way up. This is a HUGE step considering that we won a total of 3 games in the prior two years.

    By beating San Diego, we have shown that we can beat a playoff caliber team. Our performance in the first half yesterday was nfc championship caliber football. You can't play much better on defense and offense than we played in the first half yesterday, albeit with a couple of breaks (ie a couple of drops by the SD defense that could have been INT's and a HUGE drop by Gates on a perfect third and long throw by Rivers over the middle). For the game, we had seven sacks and no turnovers, in addition to a blocked field goal and a terrific interception in the end zone. With the game on the line, we imposed our will on the chargers and the Big Boy ran the ball down their throats to run out the clock, despite the obvious nature of the play calling. We have improved a great deal in a short time despite crippling injuries at a key offensive position (WR) where we were already lacking a #1 before anyone got hurt. As with almost every team at any level of football, dramatically improved line play on both sides of the ball has been a critical consideration in our ascension.

    It should be apparant to the entire NFL that the Rams are a very competitive home team. We are going to beat more good teams at home as the year moves on and the fans enthusiasm can only help the Rams feed off their effort yesterday.

    The next test for improvement is consistency and the ability to win on the road. If we can play a full game like we played the first half yesterday, the sky is the limit. We have lost two games that we could have easily won, and frankly, we almost let a win slip away yesterday with wildly conservative play calling in the second half (like we were playing not to lose, rather than trying to win). As well as we played defensively, allowing an 80 yard drive in 40 seconds at a key point in the fourth quarter is something that we can improve on quite a bit. I am sure no one wanted to see Rivers get the ball back with three time outs left only needing a field goal. The Rams have shown dominance in flashes this year, we need to learn to finish teams off and to play more consistently. Playing well on the road is a tough task for all NFL teams, we will see if the Rams can answer the call this weekend in what has to be considered a "winnable" road game at Tampa Bay. If we can respond vs Tampa and beat Carolina (which we should do), we are 5-3 heading into the bye week, a result that i doubt anyone could have projected.

    In short, we have come an awfully long way in a short time and if we want to take the next step this season (rather than in the future), we are going to have to win on the road. For now, the Rams fall solidly into the category of "any given sunday." We can beat anyone if we bring our A game, especially if teams look past us and are not ready to play.

    By the way, the non call on the hit to Bradford's head was the most ridiculous miss by a ref i have seen in probaby 30 years. The call was out in the open, directly in front of the official and the tackler obviously led with his head and made contact in the head. Makeup call notwithstanding, Helen Keller could have seen the hit to the head.

    Ramming speed to all

    general counsel
    Never strive to be mediocre. If we can win some road games we can win this division. Spags needs to elevate his message to his coaches and players that we need to win on the road as much as we do at home. I believe he can do that. Go Rams..

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Great News, we are officially a mediocre, middle of the pack NFL team

      Iíll take mediocre right now this team is hard working in moving in the right direction. I have no ideal what the team will be at season end but I would not bet against these Rams. This is as happy as I been in along time about the Rams and I am loving it.


      Go Rams!!!!
      :helmet:
      :ramlogo:

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Great News, we are officially a mediocre, middle of the pack NFL team

        I think mediocre is nice right now. Lets face it, every single NFC team has at least 2 losses. There is a 5 way tie for the top of the conference at 4-2. The majority of teams are "mediocre" right now. We're only 1 game out of top in the division at 3-3.

        The next step is to get to the top. With no teams showing to be invincible right now, it's entirely possible to make a playoff run.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Great News, we are officially a mediocre, middle of the pack NFL team

          Is it me or does mediocre seem like the wrong word?

          To me when I here the word mediocre it means just enough to get buy. No real effort just good enough?

          Go Rams....

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Great News, we are officially a mediocre, middle of the pack NFL team

            Originally posted by Dominating D View Post
            Is it me or does mediocre seem like the wrong word?

            To me when I here the word mediocre it means just enough to get buy. No real effort just good enough?

            Go Rams....
            We could use the word the NFL hierarchy is striving for.... Parity??
            RnD

            GO RAMS!!

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Great News, we are officially a mediocre, middle of the pack NFL team

              Let's not get hung up on the word "mediocre". The point here is that for the first time in several years, the buzz about our team doesn't concern whether or not it is actually the worst in the league. We're no longer the team that averages 10 points a game while giving up 27. We'll win some, we'll lose some...but we'll compete.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Great News, we are officially a mediocre, middle of the pack NFL team

                After the last few years, mediocre sounds pretty damn good to me.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Great News, we are officially a mediocre, middle of the pack NFL team

                  Originally posted by Dominating D View Post
                  Is it me or does mediocre seem like the wrong word?

                  To me when I here the word mediocre it means just enough to get buy. No real effort just good enough?

                  Go Rams....
                  In most cases, I would agree with you. As applied in this the case of the woebegone Rams of the past three years, this is a sight for sore eyes! 6-42 last three years, 3-29 for the past two years and 3-3 this year.

                  I take mediocre with an eye on the greatness meter around the corner. I know longer see or dread the so called pundits ranking of the NFL with the Rams coming up last in almost every case and every week.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Great News, we are officially a mediocre, middle of the pack NFL team

                    I remember before the season started, whoever said we would be a contender would have been laughed at. I guess we have really shown a ton of improvement on every side of the ball and are ready to change some things.

                    Comment

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                    • Guest's Avatar
                      Dr. Freud's pregame analysis-which rams team will show up?
                      by Guest
                      Since the season started, the rams have been afflicted with repeated bouts of schizophrenia. We have shown the capacity to play as well as anyone in the nfl (see the fourth quarter of the seattle game) and we have shown the capacity to play like an expansion team at times (see the stupid turnovers in the new orleans game, the collapse by the defense at the end of the saints game, the failure to make plays on defense, the capacity to give up endless big plays on defense and the worst kickoff coverage in the nfl).

                      We are showing every sign of an above average but certainly not championship caliber team, specifically, that we are playing not to our ability, but to the level of our opponent. When you play like that, you put yourself in a position where a big play or two at a critical time can easily cost you a game against an inferior opponent. The great teams win when they are not at their best, the above average teams seem to find ways to have either the breaks or big plays go against them with games on the line (ie the non-int by butler in the atlanta game).

                      Make no mistake about it, this team has a pulse, but it is marginal at this point. We were incredibly lucky to beat seattle. Notwithstanding the great comeback, better clock management and a couple of catches by receivers that got hit directly in the hands would have ended that game. Think about how different it would look at 3-4 right now without the tiebreaker advantage vs. seattle and the tough teams coming up.

                      This is the time to step up following the bye and play with consistency if we want a chance to contend. We need to play to our potential and we need to make more big plays than we give up. The defense is never going to be the 1985 bears, but when it has chances to take advantage of mistakes, it HAS to capitalize. Dropped INT's are killing us and note that when we dont create turnovers we lose. A dropped INT is really the same as an offensive turnover in the sense that we lose the chance to have possession of the ball.

                      The team at this point is too reminiscent of 2000, with the exception of the fact that the offense, while good, is no where near as dominant and we cant outscore people.

                      Here is what i think we need over the second half.

                      1) We have to give grant williams more help. He is playing as well as can be expected, but its not good enough.
                      2) We have to capitalize on defense, catch the balls when they hit us in the hands, even aeneas.
                      3) We have to stop giving up so many big plays on defense
                      4) leonard little needs to play better to cause more disruption (ie at a pro bowl level)
                      5) obviously, we need to stay as healthy as possible (we need travis fisher up to speed).
                      6) We have to be able to cover kickoffs better, we are giving up way, way too much field position for a defense that is already shaky
                      7) Consistency is crucial. We...
                      -11-04-2004, 04:14 AM
                    • general counsel
                      This is an UPSIDE game
                      by general counsel
                      Injuries aside, this game really has only upside. Its a very tough road game against a team we dont match up well against, even with their injuries. We are healthy, coming off a bye and hopefully rejuvinated for the rest of the season, but we have been unable to consistently stop the run all year and this is one of the best running teams in the nfl with what is maybe the best back in LT and a solid young improving qb. They have a stout defensive line and a monster nose tackle.

                      If we can find a way to stay in this game, we have a legit shot to win at the end of course. If we can protect bulger, we can score on them, but of course, merriman is a part of that and his status remains up in the air at this point. I hope we have a plan to control that nose tackle, but i suspect this is one of those cases where a plan is great but execution is very very tough. If jackson cant run at all and we spend the day in long yardage situations, its going to be even tougher.

                      We are 9 point underdogs which is a very big spread and tells you that the oddsmakers, who know more than any of us, think that bye or no bye, injuries or no injuries, we are in big trouble.

                      To me, our shot at this game is simple. We have to win the turnover battle convincingly and score tds in the red zone. In short, we will need to play our best game of the year and hope that they make some mistakes. If we can do that, we have a shot in this game. If we only play a half or maybe even three quarters of football, it wont be enough on the road against sandiego.

                      At the end of the day, this is NOT a game we have to win. Thats what i mean when i say it really has only upside as long as we dont get hurt. The game we will have to win is the following week at home vs kc.

                      Ramming speed to all

                      general counsel
                      -10-24-2006, 08:24 AM
                    • 1980RAMS
                      Tough loss
                      by 1980RAMS
                      Everyone lost in our division and we couldn't capitalize. Very dis heartening. This team has a problem closing games. We could have gained a game on the hawks. But instead we are in the same boat we where yesterday.

                      3 Games upcoming on the Road...... Scary
                      -11-21-2010, 06:33 PM
                    • general counsel
                      the turnovers plus the three plays we didnt make
                      by general counsel
                      Obviously, the turnovers killed us. You arent going to beat a team as good as kc, home or road, with a minus three differential very often if at all. Throw in a complete inability to stop the run, consecutive moronic false starts on barron and one terrible terrible INT call on ike that cost us a legit shot to win and you have another loss to a quality team. As many of us feared, the 4-1 was largely an illusion, built on the backs of close wins against three of the worst teams in the nfl./

                      What i want to focus on is the three plays we DIDNT make that dont really show up in the box score. The ball that hit coakley in the numbers that he couldnt catch, costing us 60 yards in field position. The non sack by fisher who whiffed and tripped over his own feet which led to a td rather than a sack right before half and our inability to fall on LJ's fumble despite the fact that we had two guys right on top of the ball.

                      Playoff caliber teams make plays, .500 teams talk about what ifs. We beat ourselves today both with our own failure to execute and our inability to make plays when we had the chance.

                      We just arent a playoff team guys. I wont give up, but reality is reality. Our best shot at this point is a win next week and a collapse by seattle which somehow enables us to sneak into the west title, but given our incompetent defense, i just dont see it happening.

                      Bulger is an all pro. Little is a guy we need to have back. Steven jackson is outstanding. I think OJ stinks. I think he is weak in run support, his coverage is lousy and his ball awareness is beyond awful.

                      Not much else to say at this point, i could go on indefinitely about 40 yard runs on third and 8 from the goal line, crappy tackling etc, but at this point, i am too disappointed to do so. We didnt give ourselves a chance to win this game, we just didnt make the plays and didnt capitalize when we had a chance.

                      It really was a terrible call on the ike interference, i do think that we were going in for the tying td and i think we had a great shot to win the game, but you cant say we lost on that call with all the other terrible mistakes we made all day long.

                      Ramming speed to all

                      general counsel
                      -11-05-2006, 01:31 PM
                    • general counsel
                      Rams win- The good, the bad and the ugly
                      by general counsel
                      Its great to get a win. Its been a while for the squad. We are a long way from playoff contention, but at least the patient has a pulse. While i still cant get over the first seattle loss as the turning point of the season, no sense in looking back as we cant change anything that happened in the past. If Pace wasnt out for the year, i wouldnt be so negative on our prospects. Our remaining schedule is not daunting with the exception of the bears game, but our offense is so limited without the Big Man that its hard for me to believe that we can finish 9-7. I hope I am wrong and if i am, i dont think its out of the question that 9-7 gets in. A while back i said it would come down to the last game of the year vs. the vikings. I hope we are alive that long and can get on a winning streak. At this point, we need to continue to hope that the teams ahead of us lose, but at the end of the day, unless we win the rest of our games, we are a longshot and if we lose only to the bears, we have at least a prayer.

                      The Good

                      Its a win and given what has happened to our season since we started playing the good teams over the last several weeks, we will take any win we can get.
                      We showed heart and fought back at the end to get it done. Best of all, we used almost all the clock so there was no time for them to pull a seattle like miracle against our defense.
                      Tye Hill. The kid will be an all pro and it wont take long. His INT today showed great coverage and phenomenal ball recognition skills in addition to excellent hands. Ball recognition is the key will hill, his speed speaks for itself.
                      Commitment to the run, even when it was less successful in the second half.
                      The Big Boy. A dominant game for steven jackson. The only negative i could find was i think he missed one blitz pick up. He was powerful in the running game and showed great hands again. He is an all pro back. Get off his case everyone. We have lots of problems, he isnt one of them.
                      Wilkins. Great kick at the end of the first half for money. it was the difference in the game.
                      setterstrom. He more than held his own today, especially in the running game. His guy batted down one ball, i didnt see him make a single other play. I think the kid MUST start for the rest of the year.
                      Mike Nolan. His decision to go for the field goal on fourth and one inch was incredible, given the way that gore was killing us. i think that cost them the game. The odds of us stopping them in that situation are about 1 in 100 at best. If they make that first down, even if they ultimately have to kick the field goal, we have to burn all our timeouts and we would have gotten the ball back with under 2 minutes.
                      Bulger. not his best game, but a gutsy performance with suspect protection, except at the end when the line (or what was left of it) really stepped up. His throw to bruce on the last drive was critical. He missed an open...
                      -11-26-2006, 02:45 PM
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