The St. Louis Rams were the worst team in the NFL last year. You can make excuses all you want, saying it was because of injuries, or because of Marc Bulger, or even play calling. There is one thing that is fact: Steven Jackson was the best and most consistent threat that we had on offense.
In theory, depending on one of the best running backs in the league is a good coaching decision, especially when that back ended up with almost 1,500 yards in 15 games. With that being said the Rams offense became too predictable last season only finishing with 17 touchdowns, and finishing the year with a 1-15 record.
There are many directions that the St. Louis Rams offense can go next year, but they also have to be aware of what Sam Bradford is comfortable with since he is the future and play mostly into his strengths. Now with that being said the Rams could possibly ride the running game for all that it is worth again, but really how good will that work since we did the same thing last year except with a more experience quarterback in Marc Bulger. Now I expect the Rams to ride Steven Jackson until the bye week after that I think they will start taking the seat belt off of Sam Bradford and let him play, with that being said let's look into what the Rams are most likely to do after the bye week.
Become more of a shotgun team
This would be the offense that Sam Bradford would be most comfortable in, being from a spread offense. Even though Steve Spagnuolo said he wanted to be a running team when he got hired, I'm pretty sure he wouldn't complain about this. It gives Sam Bradford the opportunity to make the plays that he made in college, plus it would loosen the defense up a little bit, so that they wouldn't keep 8 in the box.
Also the NFL is becoming more of a shotgun league, Sam Bradford was in a spread offense so he sounds good to me. We have some wide receivers who can get some YAC. If it turns out we don't have a true number 1 wideout on our roster well the shotgun will give us opportunity to let our good receivers to get open. Plus if we have injury problems on the offensive line like we did the last few years I don't want our franchise guy anywhere near that line of scrimmage.
The only thing that is really bad with the shotgun is the fact that we would see less Steven Jackson running, but even that could be seen as a good thing for the long term unless he gets a good backup. Keith Tolson seems like a better plan for this type of offense. Granted Steven Jackson would be okay as a receiving threat, but I would think we would see him mainly blocking in the shotgun, Which might not be good for his stats but would be good for the team.
A Balanced Offense
This would be an ideal look for the offense next year. Even though it's simple, it would keep defenses on their toes and they wouldn't know what to expect when Sam Bradford is under center if he makes plays and the throws that he made in college. This would give our offense lots of potential with play action passes and short wide receiver screens. Also with the defense not knowing what to expect, Steven Jackson would have a better season then last year rushing the ball since all the attention wouldn't be on him.
There are lots of things that could go wrong by doing this however. It would need alot of things to go good for this offensive philosophy to work. It would depend on how Sam Bradford handles pressure from the defense. The offense will have to be faced with fewer injures to star players, or Sam Bradford could be looking like Keith Null did when he took the starting job late last December.
Pass to open up the run
This would also be a great way for our offense to play next year. Most of the teams with top quarterbacks are going this route, and even though Sam Bradford isn't there yet, he does have great accuracy so he should be able to pull this off at least to a certain extent. If this were to work the defense would be expecting the pass more than 50 percent of the time, and then thats when Steven Jackson burst through the weak defense for a easy gain of 25 yards.
Now this offense has potential for the most high reward/high risk offense that we could run, espically with a rookie quarterback...no matter how good of a QB Sam Bradford is he is still a rookie. Again we would be taking some carries away from Steven Jackson but not many. Also if our offensive line becomes injured like they did last year we could be looking at Keith Null being our quarterback last year, because Sam Bradford would be getting the David Carr beat down of his life.
How do you think the Ram's offense will look after the bye week? Will it look like one of the 3 philosophies above or will it be something different? Me I think that we will become more of a shotgun team especially if we are playing behind a lot like the Rams did last year.