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  • Rams have shot at rare three-peat ..

    BY JIM THOMAS Wednesday, December 8, 2010 12:25 am

    For more than a calendar year, the Rams had no success on the road. Zero. Zilch. Couldn't buy a road victory. That all changed in Denver two Sundays ago, and again at Arizona this past Sunday.

    "Two weeks ago, at that point, we were winless on the road," running back Steven Jackson said. "So for us to get two wins on the road back-to-back weeks, it shows that this team responds to challenge."

    The challenge this week is about as big as it gets, with yet another road game against the New Orleans Saints, 9-3 this season and defending Super Bowl champs.

    "We have another huge game, and it's going to be rowdier in New Orleans," Jackson said following the Rams' 19-6 victory over the Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. "We have to get ready for this. As games approach, and each and every week as we continue to be successful, games are going to get bigger. And I think this team is starting to understand that. We've just got to continue to execute and play together."

    If the Rams can pull off an upset in the Louisiana Superdome and that's a huge "if" they also would pull off a "3-peat" of historic proportions. They would become only the third team in the 73-year history of the Rams' franchise to win road games in three consecutive weeks.

    The Rams have had some successful road teams, most notably the 2001 NFC championship squad that went 8-0 on the road that season. But that team never played away games in three successive weeks. The best they did was back-to-back road victories twice.

    The current league policy, according to Rams executive vice president of football operations Kevin Demoff, is to have teams play as many as three consecutive road games only about once every eight years.

    And the Rams last played three in a row on the road exactly eight years ago, losing at Washington 20-17 on Nov. 24, 2002, then losing 10-3 at Philadelphia on Dec. 1 and 49-10 at Kansas City on Dec. 8.

    Quarterback Kurt Warner suffered what turned out to be a broken hand in that Washington game, insisted he could play against Philadelphia but was very ineffective. That led to the first "Brenda-Gate" controversy, in which Brenda Warner Kurt's wife called a local all-sports radio station to complain about coach Mike Martz's handling of the injury.

    So far, this year's three-game road swing has gone much more smoothly, with the Rams surviving a fourth-quarter meltdown to hold off Denver 36-33 and then recording the workmanlike victory in Arizona.

    So have the Rams finally figured out how to handle this road thing?

    "I've said this from the beginning, I never thought there was really anything to figure out except you go play football between the white lines," coach Steve Spagnuolo said. "I don't know if it's that much different. Make plays and not hurt ourselves, those are probably the two biggest things ... If you do that, you've got a chance."

    Maybe it is just that basic. But to go from being absolutely, positively unable to win on the road to possibly pulling off a bit of franchise history with an upset in New Orleans? Now that would be something.

    Over the past 10 years, 34 NFL teams have played three consecutive road games. Only four the 2001 Jacksonville Jaguars, the 2005 Jaguars, the 2006 Philadelphia Eagles and the 2009 New York Giants have been able to win all three.

    Before this season, the Rams had been involved in three consecutive road games 42 times in franchise history since entering the NFL in 1937 as the Cleveland Rams. Most of those three-game road swings took place before 1970. (Thirty-one of the 42 to be exact.)

    But the Rams were able to sweep all three road contests only twice:

    In 1977, coach Chuck Knox's NFC West championship squad won at Green Bay 24-6 on Nov. 13, won at San Francisco 23-10 on Nov. 20 and then won 9-0 at Cleveland on Nov. 27.

    In 1949, coach Clark Shaughnessy's Western Conference champions won at Green Bay 48-7 on Oct. 2, won at Chicago 31-6 on Oct. 9 and then won at Detroit 21-10 on Oct. 16.

    Since the move to St. Louis, this marks only the fourth time the Rams have played road games in three successive weeks. The 2002 debacle was preceded by a 1-2 road swing under Dick Vermeil in 1998.

    And the inaugural "St. Louis" Rams team went 1-2 playing three in a row on the road from Nov. 19, 1995 to Dec. 3 of that season. The one victory during that road swing, 23-20 at the New York Jets on Dec. 3, turned out to be quarterback Chris Miller's last as a Ram because of a reoccurring concussions.

    Playoff invoices out

    As a playoff contending team in December, the Rams are sending out postseason ticket invoices this week to PSL holders. The NFL office has recommended that all playoff contending teams do so.

    Anything involving playoff ticket sales to non-PSL holders won't take place until if the Rams know they have made the playoffs, according to Demoff.

    Nixon promoted

    Linebacker David Nixon is being promoted to the active roster from the practice squad. He takes the place of linebacker Na'il Diggs, who is out for the season after suffering a torn pectoral muscle against Arizona.

    Free-agent linebackers Maurice Simpkins and Harry Coleman visited Rams Park on Tuesday, and the team plans to sign Simpkins to the practice squad to fill Nixon's spo

  • #2
    Re: Rams have shot at rare three-peat ..

    Originally posted by MauiRam View Post
    The current league policy, according to Rams executive vice president of football operations Kevin Demoff, is to have teams play as many as three consecutive road games only about once every eight years.

    ...

    Over the past 10 years, 34 NFL teams have played three consecutive road games. Only four the 2001 Jacksonville Jaguars, the 2005 Jaguars, the 2006 Philadelphia Eagles and the 2009 New York Giants have been able to win all three.
    Ok, so the past 10 years seem to hold to the once every 8 years trend(3 or 4 teams a year have the 3 game stretches), but anyone else notice the second bit? The Jags got shafted in 2001 AND 2005 with three road game trips, and won all six!
    I believe!:ram:

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Rams have shot at rare three-peat ..

      As a playoff contending team in December, the Rams....
      Does this make anyone else so happy you almost blackout?

      I know I'm pretty close to a bl..black....blackout right now..................






      ..................where am I? What happened? What's this keyboard doing here?
      The more things change, the more they stay the same.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Rams have shot at rare three-peat ..

        Originally posted by HUbison View Post
        Does this make anyone else so happy you almost blackout?

        I know I'm pretty close to a bl..black....blackout right now..................






        ..................where am I? What happened? What's this keyboard doing here?
        The "BIG" question is ........

        When the RAMS play in the 1st round of the playoffs will the game be on National T.V.?!
        sigpic :ram::helmet:

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Rams have shot at rare three-peat ..

          Sometimes I think if the Rams played in the Super Bowl it wouldn't be on national TV. Or at the very least the pundits on NFL.com would find reason not to talk about them. Other than to include us in the Shame Report for daring to actually play football games as part of the NFC West which is apparently "universally terrible."
          "I've been saving the Universe for over a thousand years. I figure it owes me just this once."

          Comment

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          • RamWraith
            Rams need a magic ride to add up to playoff berth
            by RamWraith
            By Bryan Burwell
            ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
            Monday, Nov. 14 2005

            This was not how it was supposed to be. All around the visitor's locker room in
            Seattle, the Rams quietly sorted through their belongings and began stuffing
            them and their regrets into garment bags and shoulder sacks for the long ride
            home. The game was over, the race for the NFC West was reduced to a pipe dream,
            and the Rams were suddenly staring at a second-half itinerary full of
            uncertainty.

            "I'm mad right now, but I can tell you one thing for sure, this season is far
            from over," Tyoka Jackson said. "We blew a chance to get back in this playoff
            hunt, but we got some help because several teams lost games, too. We know we're
            not out of it. I may not know very much, but I do know that."

            The Rams are 4-5 with seven games to play, and all we have to go with is the
            evidence in front of us. Right now, the Rams look like an 8-8 team, tempting
            you with promise one game (beating Jacksonville), only to frustrate you with
            maddening failures (Seattle) the next. This loss to Seattle - just like the
            opening-season loss to the woeful ***** - probably are going to be the ones
            that will keep them out of the playoffs.

            Yet even with those wasted opportunities, the Rams still have a chance to alter
            our beliefs that they've already defined themselves as a frustrating
            middle-of-the-road pretenders. The opportunity is still there for a little old
            championship magic to resurface and produce an improbable late-season surge to
            the postseason.

            "I don't look at the standings, to be perfectly honest," Marc Bulger said after
            the loss Sunday. "But our goal is still to win this division. It can still
            happen. One thing I've learned is that crazy things can happen. Remember last
            year when we were 6-8 and everyone thought we were dead? Well we ended up in
            the playoffs, didn't we? So maybe history can repeat itself."

            Maybe it can, but the Rams are running short on time. They have put themselves
            in the demanding position of probably having to win six out of their last seven
            games to even get a crack at one of those wild-card slots. The road to revival
            begins Sunday at home against the Arizona Cardinals and The Man Whose Name Must
            Never Be Spoken (my little Harry Potter homage to quarterback who used to play
            here; I made a promise after the last Cardinal game that I would let this QB
            rivalry thing go, so I will not stir the pot anymore on the MVP who used to
            play here; I will not dredge up his name as a cheap trick to sell papers, stir
            up controversy or re-open unhealed wounds ... well, at least not until Friday).

            The simple math says...
            -11-15-2005, 04:25 AM
          • r8rh8rmike
            Believe It Or Not: Rams In A Big Game
            by r8rh8rmike
            Believe it or not: Rams in a big game

            BY JIM THOMAS
            Friday, November 12, 2010

            At 2-2, the Rams headed north to Ford Field and suffered a humiliating 44-6 defeat in Detroit.

            At 3-3, the Rams headed south to Raymond James Stadium and squandered a 17-3 lead en route to a last-second 18-17 setback to Tampa Bay.

            Here we go again.

            At 4-4, the Rams head west to Candlestick Park to take on the San Francisco *****. For the third time this season the Rams will try climb above the .500 mark, a place they haven't been at any point in a season since midway through the 2006 campaign.

            Only this time, the stakes are higher because it's mid November and the Rams are leading the NFC West standings. A victory over San Francisco keeps the Rams in first place and just about puts a dagger into the ***** (2-6) who were consensus preseason favorites to win the West. A loss keeps the Rams on their nearly-season long treadmill of winning at home and losing on the road.

            "Division rival, a defense that I highly respect," running back Steven Jackson said of the *****. "I think they go about business the right way. It's one of those measuring sticks for us to see where we're at in our conference and our division. It's going to be a meaningful game. A lot of people who look at it from a point of view of (won-loss) records don't really appreciate the intensity that this game's going to bring Sunday."

            So yes, for the first time in a long time, the St. Louis Rams are playing in a big game. How long has it been? Consider Jackson's answer when asked about teaching the younger players how to win big games.

            "Well, it's something that I'm looking forward to learning," Jackson said. "I'm being honest right now."

            In seven NFL seasons, Jackson has yet to play on a team that finished the season with a winning record. And he has been part of only one playoff squad: the 2004 Rams squeaked in at 8-8 with a wild-card berth in Jackson's rookie season.

            "To have a big game, to learn how to win as the stakes get higher, as the season goes by, it's going to be fun," Jackson said. "I'm looking forward to the challenge. Hopefully we can keep ourselves in this position but everything goes back to what we've always been taught around here _ one week at a time, one game at a time. But if you continue to win, the stakes get bigger."

            Nine victories probably wins the NFC West this season, maybe eight. But you can't get to eight or nine until you first reach five. And that's the task at hand in Sunday's 3:15 p.m. (St. Louis time) kickoff.

            The Rams haven't won a road game in more than a calendar year, 378 days to be exact since winning 17-10 at Detroit on Nov. 1, 2009. As the road losses accumulate this season, the Rams have all but run out of words...
            -11-12-2010, 11:05 AM
          • RamWraith
            Rams are ready to take show on the road
            by RamWraith
            By Jim Thomas
            St. Louis Post-Dispatch
            09/10/2005


            SAN FRANCISCO -- As they trot out of the tunnel Sunday at creaky Monster Park, the Rams will be greeted by hundreds - perhaps even a few thousand - Rams fans.

            Some still sport team gear in the franchise's pre-2000 colors. Some even have shirts and hats that read: "Los Angeles Rams." Some still make the trek up the Pacific Coast from southern California every year to cheer on their transplanted franchise.

            Cornerback Travis Fisher calls it the West Coast Branch of Rams Nation.

            "There's a lot of fans over on that side," Fisher says.

            Meaning, "on that side" of the country. But even in the best of times for Rams teams, those fans quickly get drowned out by ***** loyalists in a stadium that seats more than 69,000.

            These may be the worst of times for the Niners, but triumphs here remain few and far between for the Rams. Dating to the 1991 season, the Rams have won only four times in San Francisco - in 14 tries.

            "It's hard to win on the road," wide receiver Isaac Bruce said.

            Particularly on opening day.

            "When you go into someone else's stadium, you're going to hear rockets, you'll probably see some B52s flying over your head," Bruce said. "And everyone in the stands is just rowdy from start to finish. From pregame till the end of the game. It's special."

            If the Rams can start off well on the road, this season can be special. But there's been nothing special about the Rams away from the Edward Jones Dome in recent seasons.

            On Sunday, the Rams will try to end a string of five straight regular-season losses on the road. Since the start of the 2002 season, the Rams are 8-18 on the road - a figure that includes playoff games.

            In comparison, since the start of the 2002 season, the Rams are 20-5 at the dome - a figure that also includes regular- season and postseason games.

            "The book says you're not supposed to win more than half your games on the road," defensive lineman Tyoka Jackson said. "And you try to win all your home games. But that's not the way we look at it. We want to win every single game we play.

            "Obviously, it doesn't always work out that way. But that's what you're trying to do. Road games are huge, because it helps to build confidence for your team."

            If so, the Rams have plenty of early opportunities for confidence building. Beginning with Sunday's season opener in San Francisco, three of the Rams' first four contests are on the road.

            And for only the seventh time in the 68-year history of the franchise, the Rams open with back-to-back road games. (San Francisco is followed with another NFC West road game, Sept. 18 at Arizona.)

            "Yeah, two...
            -09-10-2005, 06:44 PM
          • RamWraith
            Road show will impact Rams' fate
            by RamWraith
            By Jim Thomas
            Of the Post-Dispatch
            Monday, Nov. 15 2004

            The Rams will be home for the holidays, closing the regular season with games
            against Philadelphia (Dec. 27) and the New York Jets (Jan. 2).

            But if they are to make the playoffs for the fifth time in six seasons, they
            must get something done on the road, ASAP. That's because the only time the
            Rams play in the Edward Jones Dome until after Christmas is Dec. 5, against San
            Francisco.

            Sunday's game at Ralph Wilson Stadium in suburban Buffalo begins a string of
            four road games in five contests for the Rams - a stretch that will largely
            make or break their playoff chances.

            "It's a dangerous thing to talk about," Rams coach Mike Martz said. "I think
            the more you talk about it, the more the players get the idea that you don't
            think you can win on the road."

            In other words, the more Martz talks about the difficulties of winning on the
            road, the more the players are prone to start thinking about ... how tough it
            is to win on the road.

            "You just prepare and go play," Martz said. "That's what we did in Seattle and
            San Francisco. And you just don't pay much attention to it."

            The Rams are 2-2 on the road this year, with the victories coming in October in
            Seattle and San Francisco.

            "You know Seattle was probably as loud a crowd as we've ever played in front
            of," Martz said. "And we handled it very well."

            Well, at least they did after falling behind 24-7 at halftime. The Rams rallied
            for a 33-27 overtime triumph.

            "I think the younger players will take their lead off our veterans," Martz
            said. "I think they know how to respond. We talk to them about the environment
            that they'll walk into, and then put it to rest."

            No "St. Louis" Rams playoff team has finished a regular season with a losing
            road record:

            Last season's NFC West championship team went 4-4 away from home.

            The '99 Super Bowl championship team, and the 2000 wild- card squad,
            finished 5-3 on the road.

            The '01 Super Bowl runner-up became only the sixth team since the
            1970 AFL-NFL merger to go unbeaten on the road. Not only was that Rams team 8-0
            away from home, it won those contests by an average of 14.6 points a game.

            "There's a significant number of (2001) players still on this team," Martz
            said. "Last year, I think we turned the corner when we went on the road and
            beat Chicago, particularly Pittsburgh, and Arizona in some really tight
            ballgames."

            But can the Rams turn the corner this season?...
            -11-16-2004, 05:40 AM
          • RamDez
            Variety Show
            by RamDez
            Variety Show


            By Jim Thomas
            Of the Post-Dispatch

            08/28/2005


            Based on last season's records, the Rams have the easiest schedule in the NFL.

            The Rams face only four teams that had winning records in 2004: Philadelphia (13-3), Indianapolis (12-4), Seattle (9-7) and Jacksonville (9-7).

            They face only four teams that made the playoffs: Philly, Indy, the Seahawks and Minnesota (8-8).




            But given the current parity-driven state of the NFL, the Rams should take nothing for granted. Teams can change from the "Same Old Sorry (Bleep) Rams" into the "Greatest Show on Turf" in an instant.


            The 2005 schedule features familiar rivals New Orleans and Philadelphia. And, of course, NFC West opponents Arizona, San Francisco and Seattle. But it's really characterized more by the unfamiliar than the familiar:

            On Thanksgiving weekend, the Rams play the Houston Texans - a 2002 expansion team - for the first time.

            The day before Halloween, they play former St. Louis expansion rival Jacksonville for just the second time, and for the first time since 1996.

            In a Sunday night affair on New Year's Day, the Rams play a regular-season game in Dallas for the first time since the move to St. Louis in '95.

            The home opener on Sept. 25 marks the first visit of the Tennessee Titans to St. Louis for a regular-season contest, and the first meeting of the teams other than the preseason since Super Bowl XXXIV.

            Perhaps the marquee game of the season occurs Oct. 17 when the Rams make their first visit to Indianapolis since '95. As such, it will be running back Marshall Faulk's first game against his old club since the memorable trade that sent him to St. Louis in 1999. It's also the Rams' only Monday night appearance of this season.

            There will be some new faces to go along with the new places. The Rams get their first look at young quarterbacks David Carr of Houston, Byron Leftwich of Jacksonville, Eli Manning of the New York Giants and, quite possibly, No. 1 overall draft pick Alex Smith of San Francisco.

            At the other end of the QB spectrum, they'll face some of the top QBs in the league, including Eli's older brother Peyton, Philadelphia's Donovan McNabb and Minnesota's Daunte Culpepper.

            Obviously, no opposing quarterback will draw as much interest as the one who now calls Arizona home - Kurt Warner. A two-time NFL MVP with the Rams, Warner faces his former team twice in the NFC West. As long as Bill Bidwill owns the Big Red, playing Arizona will always be a big game for any St. Louis football fan over age 30. Putting Warner in a Cardinals uniform turns up the rivalry several notches.

            We won't have to wait long for the first meeting. It figures to be 100 degrees-plus in the Valley of the Sun on Sept.
            ...
            -08-28-2005, 02:47 AM
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