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Some concerns and some questions...

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  • Some concerns and some questions...

    I have a weak stomach when it comes to the rams. Some would argue that my glass is half empty. I prefer to say that I am preparing myself for all possibilities.

    In the event of a close game in the playoffs I have some worries. I am growing old fast when I think about our coverage on kickoffs and our use of timeouts. I have nightmares about a close game where the rams take a late lead and blow it on the ensuing kickoff and are left with not enough time and no timeouts to do anything about it. When I am in thinking postively, I worry little about this because if we manage the ball well, it usually isn't a close game anyway. So perhaps it is a moot point.

    Does anyone have thoughts on our special teams this year? Should we be worried?

    I listened to it on It sounded like our WR's were struggling to get open. Am I correct? What was Atlanta doing so well? Or was Warner off at times?

  • #2
    Warner? Off? Ha

    Warner was 25 for 30. Doesn't sound like Warner was off and Atlanta wasn't doing much well, except for the interceptions. As for our special teams, I've been concerned also. Our kickoff coverage hasn't been even near average, and our kick returners haven't gotten many good returns (although Yo Murphy may change that soon). Don't worry about it though, focus on the good things, of which there are plenty.



    • #3
      I'm the same way, very paranoid, but if anything we should be more confident now than we were in '99. The main concerns are on special teams and turnovers, but we've shown that we can work through them.

      We should be good, just take deep breaths;) :p


      • #4
        Actually, we havent shown that we can work through the INTs.

        If Warner throws 3 picks against any playoff team then chances are we lose. All the talk about eliminating turnovers is forgotten amongst the self love. We are ripe for the picking. Special team weakness only adds to the problems, In order to win playoff games you have to 1) score 2) minimize turnovers 3) keep opponent as deep as possible in their own end of the field and 4) knuckle down in the red zone.

        Please Mike Martz, wake up and smell the coffee. remember, the regular season has given the Rams HFA but other than that it counts for NOTHING. You are going to have to make mid-game adjustments and use time-outs wisely. Please show us you can do it.

        Please Rams defense, be awake EVERY play, swarm to the ball, cause turnovers, keep mixing up the schemes, attack Every Play!

        Please Rams offense-protect warner, and oh yeah....HOLD ON TO THE FREAKING BALL!

        Please Rams special teams--get downfield quickly, fill your lanes, MAKE THE TACKLE.

        A golden opportunity awaits.........


        • #5
          Yes the special teams do worry me but I think we'll work through them at least YO and BLY will hold on to the ball!!!!!!!!!!

          Warner seemed fine to me, OK he had 3 picks but out of the 30 balls throw only 2 balls hit the carpet all afternoon.

          :angryram: RAMS FOREVER
          "The breakfast Club":helmet:


          • #6
            Every team has weaknesses

            Bears: 24th ranked pass defense in the NFL
            Packers: Tendency to turn the ball over, trouble coming from behind.

            Bucs: Not enough offense, and the run D is suspect.
            Eagles: Review the above quote
            Whiners: Can't stop the Rams speed.

            Yes, we have trouble. However, so does everyone else. Not worried about it though. All the Rams need to do is play the solid D that they have been. If a special teams play burn is once, its just once.


            • #7
              Relax everyone.

              TxRamFan is right on the money with his assessment of our possible opponents. Our special teams just need to be average and as far as yesterday, remember, its harder to get open without the Reverend on the field. They just flat out doubled up on Torry and said let Ernie and Ricky beat us and thats what happened.


              • #8
                I'm not happy about the turnovers, but I'm not worried about them either. We've shown that we can stop our opponents from scoring on most turnovers. We're on top despite the fact that our turnover rating is so high. That says something about the gutsy maneuvers on offense being backed up by our defense in the event of a interception. Just a matter of turning it back around.

                As for special teams, I'm happy with how well Bly is at least hanging on to the ball, but wish he was a little gutsier about returning it for a few yards. It's a tradeoff, I'll take it. As for coverage on kickoffs to our opponents, Sunday's game definitely showed we have work to do there. That KO returned for a TD by Vaughn was a show stopper. There's just no excuse for that. Something like that can definitely cost us in the playoffs. No more of those!

                I'm glad we have this week off to get our guys healed up and ready to battle to the top! Hold on to your caps, fellas, it's gonna be a bumpy ride! HEEEEEEHAWWWW!!!!!:king:


                • #9
                  I was surprised that the Falcons brought that one back for a TD. The coverage team actually was playing pretty well, 20.4 yard average return (other than the nightmare). I think that they are coming around (did anyone see the hold in the middle of the field on that TD?).

                  As for the interceptions, the first one was just a bad throw (rare). The second one can partly be attributed to Proehl (he slowed up on his route, if he would have kept going it probably would have hit him in the head). The third one was one you just can't control, a tipped pass at the line (though the Rams have had quite a few of those lately). My conclusion from all these occurrences...THEY STILL HAD 3 TURNOVERS...While you don't like to see them, they come with the territory. The Rams throw it down the field on any down, consistently challenge the defense, and score a lot of points. Like the old saying goes, "you gotta spend money to make money", for the Rams, you gotta take some risks to score some points...

                  Did anyone see the statistic they flashed on the screen during the game?

                  I believe it said when the Rams win the turnover battle they are 18-0, when the turnover battle is even they are 10-1, when they lose the turnover battle, they are 9-10.

                  My final conclusion from all this rambling? Keep chuckin' it down the field, don't forget to hand it to Marshall about 1/3 of the time, and let the swarm clean up the mistakes...sounds like a superbowl recipe to me...

                  Crumbwell (Nolan)



                  • #10
                    txramsfan hit the nail on the head with his analysis. The turnovers are really bad for us, but the defense is picking up the slack. Warner needs to get back to the way he played when they started 6-0. We have our concerns, but as long as we control them and attack those of other teams we should be fine.


                    • #11
                      I was starting to think the the Special Teams play was getting better until that return yesterday. So yes, I'm concerned too. What we need is a kicker that can put it in the end zone at least on occasion. I love Jeff Wilkens, don't get me wrong, but when he kicks low and is received at the twenty friggin yard line, what kind of coverage do you expect?



                      • #12

                        All great responses. I actually feel a little better, although not completely confident. But I guess that's what makes watching so much fun.

                        Our D usually does a good job in reponse to turnovers. I'd like to see some stats to affirm this thought. I saw that we are 23-0 when we have 100 yards rushing, so lets just make sure Marshall gets the ball 20 - 30 times and we should be ok.

                        I will not relax until late evening on February 3.



                        • #13
                          Good posts here.I think that anyone who is a Rams fan worries a little bit come game time.I never can relax when I watch or listen to the Rams.I've always been that way.Anyway,txramsfan did hit the nail on the head.The other playoff teams do have weaknesses.I know a lot of us are really concerned about facing the Bucs again,but if we do face them in the divisionals I think we will see a solid dose of Faulk,Faulk,and more Faulk.The last time we played Tampa I really felt like we could of run the ball on them but Martz decided to strike with the air attack.This time I think Martz will attack Tampa's defensive weakness,which is their run defense.Anyway,Our road through the playoffs will be a tough one,but I have a lot of faith in the Rams,even when I worry.

                          :angryram: GO RAMS! STAY FOCUSED! WIN!:shield:
                          Last edited by Aries51; -01-08-2002, 06:15 PM.


                          • #14
                            Hang on to the DAMN BALL boys~!!

                            :ram: Its all about BALL SECURITY in the post season. The team who makes the LEAST MISTAKES will hoist the golden ball on Feb. 3. The way I see it,Kurt Warner will take this team as far as his arm can carry them. If he is the Kurt we saw vs. Miami or the Jets(etc)...title #2!! If he has a bad day and throws 3 or 4 weve seen at times...they are dead in the water. Barring an injury to one of the main guys...I dont forsee any other problems. Philly will ROLL Tampon Bay....setting up a Green Bay or SF game in round one. Not a problem with either one. Lets face it....13 turnovers in our ONLY 2 LOSSES....this aint rocket science....the ONLY TEAM to beat the RAMS...has been the RAMS!! BALL SECURITY=TITLE#2 - A DYNASTY IN THE MAKING!!:angryram: :shield: :angryram:
                            "You people point your 'f'in' finger and say theres the bad guy....what that make you....good?" Tony Montana


                            • #15
                              RAMSWIN, that kind of kick off is very rare for Wilkens. I wouldn't worry about that.


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                              • djccon
                                Dark Cloud to the Silver Lining
                                by djccon
                                Don't get me wrong, I am thrilled at 7-1, and didn't have any anxiety about today's game at all, it was as dominating as could be. However, there are areas that, if not improved upon, could cost us against good teams.

                                Unfortunately, two weeks to work on the kick coverage team doesn't seem to be enough. I fear this sub-mediocre play will haunt us later if they don't fix it soon, if not NOW!

                                As I said in an earlier post - Bobby April has to be the most overrated special teams coach alive. Where on earth did this guy earn a reputation as a special teams "genius?"

                                The never-ending turnovers are still a huge concern, too.

                                Of even greater concern is that Warner's hand hasn't healed. It looked like he was floating the ball, and I wondered internally if it wasn't still bothering him. Then, to see him with ice on it late in the game confirmed my fear. I have to wonder now if it isn't worse than even THEY know.

                                Overall, I'd venture to say the turnovers and not-so-special teams are my only concern right now. Both should be fixable.

                                As I said before, there is only ONE team capable of beating the Rams - the Rams.

                       we come.
                                -11-11-2001, 03:49 PM
                              • txramsfan
                                Rabid's Rants on Warner
                                by txramsfan
                                I just read the Rabid's Rants this week, and do agree with him to a certain extent. 18 INT's for any QB is high, extremely high. However, certain circumstances have been the cause for some of these.

                                1. Warner's thumb. It still hasn't been right since he hurt it. The deep ball is MIA really this year, but I believe Martz is as close to Woody Hayes as Bill Clinton is to George W. Completely different individuals.

                                2. Martz's play calling. MM abandonded the run in early games this year way to quickly, i.e. NO and TB at home. Anytime you come out slinging 15 or so pass plays to start the game, conventional thinking on INT's is out the window.

                                3. Tipped passes. How many of these INT's have come from passes that the WR's have let go through their hands and right into the deep corners? At least 4 I can think of.

                                One thing noticeable recently about the change in Warner is MM's prodding for Warner to move a little more. I watched the Fox Sports Special on Warner and he moved quite a bit in the Arena League. He wasn't Flutie, but he wasn't Jim Hart either.

                                I think Martz is addressing the Warner situation because no one else was banging the drum for Warner. Everyone was talking Favre, K. Stewart, or Garcia, but Warner just kept winning. Shoot, he has directed the Rams to a 12-2 record and perfect on the road.

                                I think the INT's can be reduced by both Warner throwing the ball away when nothing is there instead of trying to thread the needle everytime. Also, we have seen an increase in the running game lately, causing D's to play us closer. Both Warner and Martz can be blamed for the INT's, but I don't think he wants to grab Warners facemask and shake it anytime soon.
                                -12-29-2001, 11:32 AM
                              • Randy
                                Martz-Players coach
                                by Randy
                                Listening to Mike Martz's press conference on Tuesday 12/18 the players have to love this guy. He stood up for Hakim, stating that he is coached to look in front of him to view where the oncoming defenders are at, and the problem lies in his feet positioning. I don't know if I buy that but that's his statement, how can you catch a ball if you are not concentrating on it. Praising Kurt & Grant on the best games of their short NFL careers. Standing up for his players when they wanted challenges. That may burn us in the playoffs but you got to like the aggressive offense. All the other teams in the league except us and San Fran are BORING. RUN-RUN-PASS-PUNT. LOOK FOR RAMS TO GO 14-2, huge blowouts againest Indy and Falcons. Once playoffs start, What do the Bears have? we beat SF consistantly finally, Philly nothing, watch the Pack.
                                -12-19-2001, 11:33 AM
                              • porkchop
                                Is the staff insane?
                                by porkchop
                                I posted a couple of weeks ago that star players on this team don't have business in the game at the end of a blowout. No one seemed to think twice about it. I think that is dangerous coaching, not to mention tasteless.

                                Which brings me to my next point..

                                How many hits does Warner have to take before the staff realizes that their star player is not Superman?

                                Does anyone know how many times Warner was hit Sunday? 16 was the last count I heard. 16 hits on the QB of the "best team in the league" is ludicrous! Is it just me?!?!
                                What was Martz talking about in pre-game when he said he didn't want Strahan making any pep rallies over there? I only ask, because he did nothing to stop Strahan all game long. Nothing except put in another tackle half way through the 4th quarter. Strahan was all over Warner all day. He had 4 sacks and probably 8 hits atleast. Yet the staff did nothing. No chip blocks, no double teams, nothing. Tucker can't handler Strahan on a good day, much less being banged up. Where does Martz get off is my question?! Did Martz think he would just suite up and play tackle himself or something?!

                                Faulk is out and Warner is next. Mark my words, Warner will go down this year because of the staff. There is not a person on the board that wasn't holding their breath when Warner went down in the 4th. The next time he might not be so lucky. There is not a team in the league that would pass up a shot at Warner. Whether it's a legal shot or an illegal shot. You have to protect your players.

                                Flame away!
                                -10-15-2001, 07:30 PM
                              • Nick
                                [PD]: Warner can relate to Bulger's struggles
                                by Nick
                                Rams Q-and-A: Warner can relate to Bulger's struggles
                                STLTODAY.COM SPORTS
                                Wednesday, Sep. 20 2006

                                Former Rams quarterback Kurt Warner can relate to Marc Bulger’s early-season struggles.

                                After leaving St. Louis, Warner had to adjust to new systems in New York and Arizona. So he understands the transition Bulger must make to new Rams coach Scott Linehan and his offensive system.

                                Warner offered these assessments of the Rams during his conference call with the St. Louis media:

                                On the challenge of learning a new system:

                                “It is always difficult to learn a new system and really learn the ins and outs of it. It’s one thing to kind of know what you are supposed to do, but it’s another thing to get to the point where it is second nature where you can react and respond and see what’s going on and be to the point where you just play football -– especially when the philosophy is so much different than what they experienced before.

                                “Sometimes it takes a full season. I remember when I was in New York, that whole season I never really felt 100 percent comfortable with what were doing and really felt like I could play football in a comfortable type fashion. It was always kind of a struggle, always second-guessing and thinking about things more than I had to before. It makes you play the game differently and sometimes it is frustrating.”

                                On the Rams’ struggle to score points:

                                “When you look at the playmakers they’ve got, the talent they’ve got on the offensive side of the ball . . . it’s always interesting when a team like that can’t score, but we’re very familiar with that. We’ve had a lot of talent on offense last year, too, and moved the ball, just had trouble putting the ball in the end zone. You understand how much more difficult it gets down in the red zone.

                                “Just with my limited understanding of their offense, they are a ball-control offense where they take the ball down . . . they are going to have a lot of opportunities, probably within the 20-yard line, maybe inside the 10-yard line. But the thing that is hard about it, you come to understand when you’re trying to throw the ball inside the 10-yard line, it gets a lot more difficult. In the old offense, you would get a couple touchdowns a game on 30-, 35-yard pass plays or run plays.

                                “That’s what we experienced last year. We moved the ball between the 20s, but we never got a lot of big touchdowns so we always had our backs against the wall on short fields trying to spread teams out and throw the ball, which makes it very, very difficult. That’s what happens when you have a ball-control-type offense.”

                                On whether he has talked with Bulger about his situation:

                                “We actually talk quite a bit. I actually talked to him just last week. He did tell me he is working through it. It is a work in progress,...
                                -09-20-2006, 01:36 PM