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Rams beat Jacksonville 27-17; The Good, Bad and Ugly

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  • Rams beat Jacksonville 27-17; The Good, Bad and Ugly

    The Rams rode dominating special teams play today to defeat Jacksonville 27-17 on the road, moving to 4-2 for the first time since 2006. Two special teams td's and a 56 yard bomb by The Leg were instrumental in achieving a hard fought victory which gives the Rams their first 3-0 road start since 2001. Todd Gurley averaged 5 yards a carry rushing for 116 yards and the Rams overcame a number of missed opportunities on offense and some shaky play calling to win a game that really could have gone either way. After a horrific start defensively, the Rams settled down to tighten up and hold Jacksonville to nothing more than a field goal over the last three quarters of the game. A ton of room to improve, but this is EXACTLY the kind of game the Rams have been finding a way to lose for years and today, despite not playing anywhere near their best, they found a way to get the victory against a quality opponent. Can the Rams make a playoff run this year? Still too early to tell, but for sure, we are dramatically improved and the future looks bright, especially if whitworth never gets any older!

    The Good

    Special Teams. The Egyptian returns the opening kickoff 103 yards for a td on a run that showed speed, balance and moves. We blocked a punt (Littleton) for a td when Brown recovered and the pile pushed him into the end zone. Leg bombed a 56 yarder straight through and hit the game clinching 29 yard field goal. Hekker launched multiple projectiles, including 4 of 6 punts inside the 20 and a 67 yarder. Meanwhile, Jacksonsville kicker missed two long field goals and would have missed a third if not for a stupid penalty on the Rams. They also had a number of shanked punts. No question that the difference today was special teams.

    Todd Gurley was excellent in the running game with 23-116. He had some holes and capitalized. Dont ask me why he only had one catch for 4 yards. Give the offensive line credit for the run blocking (see play calling comments below). Gurley effectively clinched the game with a huge 3rd and 4 first down conversion just under the 4 minute remaining mark. Running with power and speed, he needs more carries when he is running well like today.

    We had four sacks today and defensively, we made enough plays to keep them from scoring despite the lousy start. 3 points allowed in 3 quarters is going to result in wins almost every week. Nice interception by robey-coleman. 5 sacks (barron, who had 8 tackles, donald, fox, barwin and brockers (who is having a pro bowl year). We allowed 19 first downs and 389 total yards, which when you consider that they gained 75 yards for a td on their first play and 75 yards in 2 minutes on 4 plays on their second drive) is pretty good.

    While the stats didnt look great (11-21-124-a td and arating of 86.2), i thought goff was basically good, and he made some throws that could easily have been caught and changed the game. He had a huge 22 yard first down conversion to kupp with the game on the line. Made a fantastic throw to woods for a first down which hit woods in the helmet and he failed to catch. He made a nice throw early on 3rd and 7 that sammy dropped (you want the ball, catch the ball). He missed watkins on a deep throw that was certainly a mistake, he had it set up with play action and had all day to throw. Nice catch on the shovel pass td to everett. He didnt make the big mistake, no INT's and that is really critical in a tight game like this. Like the rest of the rams, plenty of room for improvement, but generally and directionally good and certainly better than last week (so i am told).

    First time in super bowl era that teams scored on 75 plus yard scoring plays in the first 30 seconds of the game. I would have bet that its the first time in history that the first two plays of the game resulted in td's.


    The Bad

    Still way too many penalties including personal fouls, 7 for 74 yards. Need to clean that up.
    Terrible sloppy tackling early, way too many missed tackles in the open field.
    Too many drops (waktins and woods on third down). Need to get ball to watkins more, he had 1 catch for 11 yards.
    Cambpell has to be on the list of all time rams killers. Two sacks and a blocked pass on 3rd down and i dont know how many tackles, we didnt do a very good job blocking him, although it was better in the second half.
    Play calling. I thought we were lousy especially in the second half. Gurley is running effectively at over 5 yards a shot and we keep lining up in the shotgun and throwing routes against a good secondary that werent working. I dont see why he didnt pound gurley over and over until they stopped it. He finally did pound gurley on the last drive and that resulted in the game clinching field goal. I also think we need to figure out how to get it to watkins more. Where are the wide receiver screens. Where are the quick slants? Where were the screen passes especially to gurley? Austin by the way is essentially a waste.
    Two fumbles/bobbles by cooper returning punts, the fumble at the end could have cost us the game.
    Dick Stockton is completely fossilized. He hasnt been the same since Leslie Visser left him and he is just awful now. You have to love the comment at the end about the kickoff return by Cooper Pharoah. Gives credit to great defense when balls hit receivers on both teams in hands for drops on third down. He needs to be sent out to pasture.
    Too many misses early on short yardage wise where gurley had no chance.
    We had only 12 first downs and 249 yards of ofense and were 4-13 on third down. Most of those conversions were thankfully on the last drive. We have to do better offensively. We arent going to score 2 special teams td's very often in one game.
    Missed running into kicker call on hekker.
    On the injury side, it didnt look like anything too terrible on the field (although lets hold our breath on webster going out at the end, carrier left for concussion protocol), but general counsel is really struggling with his groin injury which he continues to aggrevate during the post game victory celebrations, especially during the dance on one foot routine. This is a condition i am happy to suffer through as long as we keep winning and if we can pull it out next week, i am going to go all out post game knowing that i have the bye week to fully recover.

    The Ugly

    First quarter defense. A 75 yard run up the middle on the first play for a td, then a 75 yard 4 play 2 minute drive for a td.
    The penalty on the illegal formation that cost us 3 points when the kicker converted the second chance on the missed 41 yard field goal.
    A horrible and ugly fumble by woods at midfield when we were driving with a chance to take a commanding lead after a nice throw and catch.
    Ugly miss by Woods on a key 3rd and long that hit him literally in the helmet. Easy catch? No. Catch he has to make with the game on the line and that kind of throw? Absolutely.


    Summary

    A great win from my perspective because winning when you don't play your best, and finding unconventional ways to win, are signs of a good team. These are the kind of wins that when you look back at the end of the season really make a difference in the standings, and you have to love the way the Rams bounced back after such a tough loss last week to show some maturity and get a hard fought victory. Another sputtering performance by the offense, but not horrible, just not opportunistic and you have to be encouraged by the success of the running game. Realistically 4-2 is an excellent start and we are certainly positioned for a playoff run if we can achieve consistency on both sides of the ball and stay away from the turnovers. The key remains consistency of the offensive line play, which gives goff opportunities and allows gurley to assert himself. I wish we would play a complete game of run defense and not get torched early. That will be really important next week in a critical division game against Arizona. The Rams obviously did not take advantage of a huge chance at home vs seattle, and this game against arizona is another opportunity to stake out a claim to a run at the division. Tough break that its a home game in london, but we all hope that our RamsBros accross the pond will be on hand to cheer the squad on to what would be an enormous win heading into the bye week. The Cardinals now have adrian peterson but are vulnerable on the offensive line and we are going to need our defensive line to pressure palmer which as we have seen in the past leads to turnovers. With Campbell behind us, i hope we are ready for another all time Ram killer in Larry Fitzgerald. Let's all enjoy a really big win today and get geared up for a ginormous tilt next sunday in London.

    Ramming speed to all

    general counsel

  • #2
    Good write-up. Since I didn't see the game, this gives me an insight into how it went.

    Thanks!!!


    gap

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    • #3
      I read a post about the Rams where when facing a top tier defense the Rams struggle...giving up two games (Redskins/Squawks)... And the stats show Goff didn't have a great game throwing the ball--though as mentioned in the "Bad", not the best job of play calling. Still to the Rams credit wins over the 49whiner and Cowgirls defense is rather impressive and even not imploding before the Jags D says something

      Yes the Rams won because of Special teams in terms of points. But the real reason the Rams is at QB. Goff is better then Bortles... But once again the Ram's defense made an "OKish" QB look almost like a hall of fame QB as was the case against the 49whiners: Notice who in the 49whiner camp didn't finish their game against the Redskins at QB? IF you said Hoyer, here is a cookie. Said Hoyer was a bad (joke) of a QB and it appears their HC finally figured it out.

      Now I predicted a Ram's win over the Jags at the start of the season, but I didn't imagine the win would come off a special teams effort--had imagined a better defense flogging a less then OK QB.

      Sorry to say but outside of the Rams front 3 of the 3/4, the Rams are get whipped on the ground. A 3/4 has to have a solid LB core or like every team without solid LBs using the 3/4, they are going to be road kill in the ground game
      Last edited by Ram Dragoon; -10-15-2017, 07:32 PM.

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      • #4
        Greta writeup as allways.

        on tre bad/ugly side Quinn needs to be mentioned. Again lining up in neutral zone. It is an ugly penaty.

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        • #5
          There was some ugly stuff from the Rams in this game, but nothing as ugly as trying to kick a 54 yard field goal on 2nd down with over a minute left in the game when your kicker has shown he hasn't got the leg for it
          @EssexRam_

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          • #6
            I have to say that 2 penalties today were totally unfathomable. The 15-yard personal foul was NO WAY a penalty and the running into the kicker!!! a foul all the way.


            ___________________________________________________________
            Keeping the Rams Nation Talking

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            • #7
              Great write-up GC. As I can only watch the game on Red Zone your posts are really informative. Your point about Watkins is spot on. I realize we only acquired him in August after training camp ended, but you can now see the value of camp for getting players in sync with each other, especially QB's and receivers. I hope as the season wears on they will get better at knowing each other's traits. He does need to get open so the catches aren't always contested.

              I looked at our record and realized we need only do a bit better than 500 to get to a 10-6 record. The next 2 games are essential for us to win so we're at 6-2 at the halfway mark. Next week got a bit tougher with Peterson, but he isn't as fast as he once was, so we need to get to him early.

              Go Rams!

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              • #8
                Originally posted by mde8352gorams View Post
                Great write-up GC. As I can only watch the game on Red Zone your posts are really informative. Your point about Watkins is spot on. I realize we only acquired him in August after training camp ended, but you can now see the value of camp for getting players in sync with each other, especially QB's and receivers. I hope as the season wears on they will get better at knowing each other's traits. He does need to get open so the catches aren't always contested.

                I looked at our record and realized we need only do a bit better than 500 to get to a 10-6 record. The next 2 games are essential for us to win so we're at 6-2 at the halfway mark. Next week got a bit tougher with Peterson, but he isn't as fast as he once was, so we need to get to him early.

                Go Rams!
                Isn't RedZone an ever changing highlight of different clips as they come in from around the league. I'd rather listen to the game on the radio than watch just clips. The radio is very underrated platform of catching the game. If not try a streaming sports site. I know a lot of them are garbage, but I've found one which is pretty consistent if you can handle watching the game on a small screen. Live Streamz.net.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by GroundDog39 View Post
                  Isn't RedZone an ever changing highlight of different clips as they come in from around the league. I'd rather listen to the game on the radio than watch just clips. The radio is very underrated platform of catching the game. If not try a streaming sports site. I know a lot of them are garbage, but I've found one which is pretty consistent if you can handle watching the game on a small screen. Live Streamz.net.
                  It depends.

                  When I had RedZone a couple years back, I cancelled it after a few weeks because they pretty much kept it on one game until there was a scoring event at another game, and then they only showed a replay of the scoring event. IIRC, the RAMS were playing (and beating) the Saints and it only got replays of the RAMS score and coverage when the Saints were in scoring position. The rest of the time they broadcasted a 49whiners game (almost in entirety) that wasn't the nationally broadcast game.

                  RedZone is a ripoff as far as I am concerned, and should be just another "included channel" in any cable/dish/dtv package.


                  gap

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by gap View Post

                    It depends.

                    When I had RedZone a couple years back, I cancelled it after a few weeks because they pretty much kept it on one game until there was a scoring event at another game, and then they only showed a replay of the scoring event. IIRC, the RAMS were playing (and beating) the Saints and it only got replays of the RAMS score and coverage when the Saints were in scoring position. The rest of the time they broadcasted a 49whiners game (almost in entirety) that wasn't the nationally broadcast game.

                    RedZone is a ripoff as far as I am concerned, and should be just another "included channel" in any cable/dish/dtv package.


                    gap
                    I have COMCAST cable service here in NJ, and Red Zone is part of my package.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by tomahawk247 View Post
                      There was some ugly stuff from the Rams in this game, but nothing as ugly as trying to kick a 54 yard field goal on 2nd down with over a minute left in the game when your kicker has shown he hasn't got the leg for it
                      This had to be one of the more stranger calls so far this season. Very questionable play when it's only second down...
                      Always a Rams Fan............

                      Rex Allen Markel

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by NJ Ramsfan1 View Post

                        I have COMCAST cable service here in NJ, and Red Zone is part of my package.
                        I too have Comcast/Xfinity here in the Bay Area and it is a tiered service which I subscribe to for 4 months of the football season. It is $9.95, but this year they advised me of a promotion that costs me only $5. I think I will check into Sunday Ticket streaming which is $70/month. I just need to find out from Comcast if they can stream it on my TV (I have a smart TV). Watching it on a computer screen or a tablet just isn't a lot of fun. Things on Red Zone got better once the Rams returned to LA as their home games are always in the late slot where there are 3-4 games to select from. I'm hoping that a game or 2 may get moved into the Sunday Night schedule once they get to the flex scheduling part of the season.

                        My hope is once the Raiders depart for Vegas more games will be shown as the market will have only 1 team, thus less issues with "home team" blackout rules. I had that problem in NY for many years so I know the rules pretty well. This is one of the reasons I detest Roger Goodell as the NFL keeps the Sunday Ticket off cable and gives Direct TV the exclusive.

                        Does anyone know where the London game will be televised? It should be on at 6AM PST, just not sure where.

                        Go Rams!

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by GroundDog39 View Post
                          Isn't RedZone an ever changing highlight of different clips as they come in from around the league. I'd rather listen to the game on the radio than watch just clips. The radio is very underrated platform of catching the game. If not try a streaming sports site. I know a lot of them are garbage, but I've found one which is pretty consistent if you can handle watching the game on a small screen. Live Streamz.net.
                          Thanks GroundDog, I'll check it out.

                          Go Rams!

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