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  • Martz: "I'm not quitting."

    Martz: I'm not quitting


    R.B. FALLSTROM

    Associated Press



    ST. LOUIS - As bleak as the situation looks, there's no giving up for St. Louis Rams coach Mike Martz.

    Martz, whose fifth season with the team has been a semi-disaster, on Monday had a strong rebuttal to an ESPN report that he might consider quitting. The Rams were among the preseason Super Bowl favorites after going 12-4 last year but are 6-8 heading into the final two games.

    "I would never resign from this job," Martz said. "I love this job and I would never leave these guys. We've got a real solid crew of young players and it's going to eventually be a terrific team, and I'm not going to ever walk away from something like that."

    Martz has two years left on a contract that pays him $3.5 million annually, and he noted that he's financially secure.

    "I coach because I want to coach, and I love being here," Martz said. "That hasn't changed. We're going to forge on and get this thing back up and running the way it should be.

    "I'm one of those guys where that glass is always half-full and not empty. Sometimes it's hard to look at it like that but no, no, this guy's not going anywhere. No way, Jose."

    Martz is 51-32, counting the playoffs, since leading the Rams to their first Super Bowl championship as Dick Vermeil's offensive coordinator in 1999 and led the Rams to a 14-2 record and his own Super Bowl in 2002. This year has unraveled due to big problems early on with shaky defense and special teams, and lately with what used to be a high-powered offense.

    But this is where he wants to stay. Martz noted that earlier in the season he shot down speculation he'd be interested in the Dolphins vacancy.

    "This is where I want to retire," Martz said. "I have no interest in ever coaching for any other NFL team. We love living here, we love the organization."

    Martz hopes the return of quarterback Marc Bulger after missing two weeks with a bruised right shoulder can reinvigorate an offense that produced one touchdown while he was out. Bulger threw again on Monday with minimal problems.

    "He's ready to go," Martz said. "He's got very little effect on the followthrough, which is really the biggest concern."

    Backup Chris Chandler, 39, has been a major disappointment and might get released. He threw six interceptions last week in a loss at Carolina, then got yanked after going 1-for-6 for 1 yard and producing zero first downs in the first quarter of Sunday's 31-7 loss at Arizona.

    Jamie Martin, signed on Dec. 7 after being out of the NFL for more than a year, is the likely backup this week after playing the last three quarters on Sunday.

    "I believe in him," Martz said. "He's a tough dude, physically and mentally."

    For now, Chandler remains on the roster.

    "I got very upset with him during the game," Martz said. "He made some errors early that I was upset about and I regret being that upset with him."

    Chandler's sorry stint as the starter has enforced in Martz' mind how good Bulger is and how the last two losses might have been averted.

    "It's all the difference in the world," Martz said. "I think he's one of the elite in the league and I've been saying that for a long time. Now that he was out of the picture I think everybody can appreciate how good he really is and how stymied we become in a lot of areas without him in there."

    Despite their problems, the Rams remain in the playoff hunt. They're one game behind the also disappointing Seahawks (7-7) in the NFC West but own the tiebreaker.

    "It's kind of neat, actually," Martz said. "I wouldn't say it was crazy. That's how you have to look at it, we've got to forge ahead."

  • #2
    Re: Martz: "I'm not quitting."

    Sorry, Mike... I see nothing "neat" about this season.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Martz: "I'm not quitting."

      "neat" is the perfect adjective considering the perceived kindergarden playing level of the nfc west....

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Martz: "I'm not quitting."

        The Rams were among the preseason Super Bowl favorites after going 12-4 last year
        I did not see anyone picking us, not one. Now we have not played as well as we should have.
        This year has unraveled due to big problems early on with shaky defense and special teams, and lately with what used to be a high-powered offense.
        How about losing a starting O-line man and QB for two games.

        Comment

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        • the brent
          Martz has to go..
          by the brent
          ..Just an attention grabber there really - 2 pre-season games a season does not make. However Martz continues to make some incredibly questionable decisions, including player and personnel aquisitions, alienated a number of players and cost The Rams at least one - more likely two - superbowls on his watch. When you look at the Rams since '99 they have put up some remarkable stats but it could be said that that is the team Dick built. This season has to be make or break for him, nothing less than making it to the NFC championship. There is definately an argument stating that Martz was a brilliant offensive coordinator but simply has no business being a head coach, at least maybe at this level.
          -08-24-2005, 02:15 PM
        • RamWraith
          Martz is hot topic on NFL shows
          by RamWraith
          BY DAN CAESAR
          ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
          10/30/2005

          Rams coach Mike Martz was a big topic of conversation on the NFL television pregame shows Sunday.

          There wasnt a lot of news that hasnt already been reported locally regarding the health problems that have led him to stepping down for the rest of the season, and the squabbling inside the organization that strongly indicates that Martz is done as the teams coach.

          CBS aired an interview that Lesley Visser conducted with Martz on Friday at his home. Among the highlights:

          Ive been coaching for 32 years now and Ive never missed a practice in the offseason or during the season due to illness, Martz said. . . . Im just a spectator, and that kills you.

          Visser asked him if he thought he was being set up by the front office.

          No, I dont believe that, I dont believe that at all, Martz said. I think (team president) John Shaw is truly concerned about my health, to be honest with you. I think hes very concerned about my health, hes told me that.

          He said he plans to be back with the team next year.

          Im assuming I (will be), he said. So if thats not going to be the case, Im not aware of it.

          This is the job Ive always wanted. This is home for us. This is something that weve always told our players and coaches, once you become a Ram youll always be part of this town for the rest of your life. So to even think about going someplace else, to ever entertain that thought, to me is heresy.

          The Rams soap opera provided plenty of fodder for the network analysts.

          No matter what Mike Martz says publicly, he knows he has coached his last game in St. Louis, ESPNs Chris Mortensen said. . . . Martz even told me that in contract discussions in June, team president John Shaw explained that the Rams only needed to be a .500 team, occasionally go to the playoffs and suggested that going to the Super Bowl would cost the team money because of expenses incurred by that event.

          Whatever the context, Martz has one year left on his Rams contract there will be a settlement, a buyout, whatever you want to call it. And Martz is hopeful that being 20 games above .500 as a coach will get him another gig. But he has to get healthy first. His agent, Bob LaMonte, told Martz this week that hes never seen a dead man call a good play.

          CBS Boomer Esiason said Martz will be the most sought-after head coach when he does comes back. Remember, hes the architect of one of the greatest offenses weve ever seen in the NFL.

          Foxs Terry Bradshaw said he thinks Houston is be a good spot for Martz.

          I would pick Houston simply because of his great offensive mind, and they do need some excitement down in Houston, Bradshaw said. I think hes got a good QB down there (David Carr) and Mike...
          -10-30-2005, 06:02 PM
        • RamDez
          Martz passes on critics
          by RamDez
          Martz passes on critics

          By MIKE SANDO
          October 9, 2004



          All Mike Martz has done is win 66 percent of his games, the same amount as the only current NFL coach whose bust resides in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

          Unlike Joe Gibbs, a three-time Super Bowl winner, Martz has yet to win the big game since becoming the St. Louis Rams' coach in 2000.

          But that's not why Martz attracts more criticism than any consistently successful coach in memory.

          The problem, as critics see it, involves Martz's penchant for passing more than any team in the league.

          Just think how many Super Bowls the Rams might have won had Martz fed the ball to his running backs a little more, critics say.

          "I don't know why it's such an issue," Martz said this week as the Rams prepared to visit the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday. "It's not going to change now."

          That kind of unrepentant attitude, paired with a 2-2 record this season, has only invited more griping.

          The Rams actually attempted 11 more runs than passes during their 24-14 victory over San Francisco on Sunday. It was the second time in two seasons Martz called more runs than passes in a game.

          Marshall Faulk finished with 121 yards rushing as the Rams moved to 26-0 when Faulk reaches triple digits on the ground.

          "I've always been pragmatic," Martz said. "You've got to move the ball any way you can and get points on the board.

          "The whole notion about balance is fine as long as you're winning."

          Martz has won more than most. His four-plus years leading the Rams have produced two NFC West titles and a Super Bowl berth.

          Starting with 2000, his season records are 10-6, 14-2, 7-9 and 12-4.

          "I do feel good about the job that I'm doing," Martz said. "I'm encouraged that we're going to get better and that's how I see my job.

          "You take a group of guys and you help them become maybe something that they didn't know or weren't sure they could be, whether it's a particular player or the whole team, and where that takes you, it takes you.

          "That's the thrill in coaching for me, and in that respect I feel like I've been successful."

          Martz, 53, still has time to win that Super Bowl. "I've got a lot of coaching left in this little body," he said, "so we'll see what happens."
          -10-10-2004, 02:09 AM
        • ramsbruce
          All Of This Talk About Martz Not Coming Back
          by ramsbruce
          It's way to early to know one way or the other what will happen with Martz. Here is what I know. On ESPN Monday Night Countdown they said Martz will not be back coaching with the Rams THIS SEASON. We all learned that this afternoon. The guys on Countdown asked Mortenson if he THOUGHT Martz would be back with the Rams. Mort said no he didn't THINK Martz would be back.

          Martz also had a press conference today explaining that he is too ill to coach THIS SEASON. Martz also said he is still under contract for next year and he would be back.

          So the bottom line is that until Martz tells us that he's not coming back next year, then from what we heard today from him he will be back.

          ESPN and Mort have their opinions and whoever else wants to make a bigger story out of this then it really is. But it's all just speculation right now. There is no way to know until we hear it from Martz, and right now as of today Martz said he would be back.

          Really all that's happened is a couple words got switched around or left out of the story by Mort and it makes for a better story.

          Look at the difference:

          Rams Martz Not Coming Back To The Rams

          OR

          Rams Martz Not Coming Back To The Rams THIS SEASON.

          Pretty big difference there.


          Martz is ill and he needs to get his health in order. This is the right thing to do. As for next year it's really up to Martz if he wants to come back or if the Front Office wants to fire him, which I don't see them firing him.

          So in reality all this is, is a blown out of proportion story by the media to create a buzz. As of now from what Martz said today health willing he will be back to coach the Rams next season. Don't believe the hype. Wait till you hear an official announcement.
          -10-25-2005, 12:03 AM
        • Nick
          Critics be damned, Martz goes to playoffs - PD
          by Nick
          Critics be damned, Martz goes to playoffs
          By Bernie Miklasz
          Of the Post-Dispatch
          Sunday, Jan. 02 2005

          Well, now. Mike Martz got it done. He defiantly thumbed his nose at the outside
          world and arrogantly continued to do things his way. Martz held the Rams
          together long enough to take advantage of the chronic, comedic mediocrity in
          the NFC. And the NFC West was so bad, the prison team from the film "The
          Longest Yard" would have won the division.

          But the NFL is a bottom-line league, and Martz has crashed his way into the NFL
          playoffs. As the NFL's most controversial and unpopular head coach, Martz
          enters as an uninvited guest, an unwelcome guest. But he's in the door, and no
          one can push this half-mad, maverick, eccentric coach back onto the street.
          He's cleared the velvet rope. He's in the exclusive NFL playoff club.

          "I guess our head coach won't be fired now," running back Marshall Faulk said
          in a fine display of sarcasm.

          But Martz will be fired upon. On the day the Rams survived the New York Jets to
          win 32-29 in overtime, Martz got pounded again by ESPN football analyst Tom
          Jackson. Asked to name the worst coaching decision of the 2004 season, Jackson
          barked "Anytime Mike Martz did anything on the field."

          And Friday, in an interview on the NFL channel on Sirius satellite radio,
          washed-up Oakland Raiders defensive tackle Warren Sapp said Martz was "a little
          on the girlie side." Asked about the Martz vs. Kyle Turley confrontation, Sapp
          apparently fantasized about being in Turley's place and said, "I'll just stomp
          him (Martz) right across his damn head because he really thinks his (stuff)
          don't stink and you really don't like those kind of guys in this league."

          Martz wouldn't win elections, but he does win games.

          As if to annoy those who embrace conventional wisdom, Martz went retro on
          Sunday, taking the Rams back to 1999, having quarterback Marc Bulger sling for
          450 yards against the Jets. Oh, so we want Martz to run the freaking football?
          Well, take a number and get in line. Martz doesn't care what you think, what I
          think, or what the crew at ESPN thinks. He doesn't even care what his assistant
          coaches, bosses or players think. It's always Martz against himself, Martz
          against the world.

          So on Sunday at The Ed, the Rams ran the rock 19 times and put it in the air 42
          times, squandering all of those passing yards with three turnovers and other
          drive-snuffing mistakes. Instead of trying to protect a 21-10 lead by working
          the clock, Mad Mike staged an air show for his critics, and probably hoped to
          crash-land his plane into the press box to make...
          -01-02-2005, 11:19 PM
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