Bye weeks do strange things to teams in power rankings. On one hand, you don't win. That doesn't play well in a what have you done for me lately league (see: Andy Reid). On the other, when your team has been playing horribly, a bye week means you didn't lose. So when other bottom-feeding teams put up poor showings, your team avoids similar embarassment.
Such was the case for the Rams this week. Sure, some had a chance to let the Rams' conclusive failure of the first quarter of the season sink in. And to see teams like Carolina, Minnesota and Denver finding causes for optimism amid pretty horrible seasons, it doesn't exactly create a flattering juxtaposition against this Rams squad. On the other hand, it was a week without a mistake-filled beating at the hands of another team.
At this point you kind of have to laugh. The Rams get a bye week to heal up and spend it instead by losing Bradley Fletcher for the season, by losing Danny Amendola for the season, by confirming yet another concussion for Mike Hoomanawanui, and even by having DC Ken Flajole pick up an injury with a groin pull. Is there a bigger omen that Lombardiola, the great football diety who lives in the clouds within spitting distance at Mile High and makes it snow for New England home games in December, hates your team than that bye week?
Let's hope he got it out of his system, and that we can at least put up a fight against the consensus best team in the NFL right now, the Green Bay Packers. With the Pack game followed by a road contest in Dallas and a home game against the Saints, the Rams are staring at a very possible 0-7 start.
When you start 0-7, if you listen closesly, you can hear Lombardiola whispering in the wind, "Don't look at me. You guys just stink."
For reference, here's last week's ranking summary.
|Average ranking (# of rankings)||30.67 (9)
|Average change from last week||-0.44
|Highest ranking (source)||29th (Fox Sports)
|Lowest ranking (source)||32nd (multiple sources)|
|Biggest positive change (source)||+1 (ESPN)|
|Biggest negative change (source)||-2 (Pro Football Weekly)|
SB Nation: 30th (29th last week)
I just don't get it. I really don't. Josh McDaniels was supposed to help take Sam Bradford to the next level. They won seven games last year and they were supposed to take that third year leap under Steve Spagnuolo. I can't figure this out.
The rest of the major power rankings after the jump.
ESPN: 31st (32nd)
Sam Bradford's on pace to absorb 72 sacks as St. Louis braces for the unbeaten Packers at Lambeau.
NFL.com: 32nd (32nd)
We end with yet another team on a bye. Our 32nd and final ranking doesn't move, partially because the news only got worse for the Rams this week. The 49ers continue to pull away with the division, and now Sam Bradford's most reliable weapon -- Danny Amendola -- is out for the season. The Rams are at Green Bay on Sunday. Oh man, what an upset that ... would ... be ... nevermind.
CBS Sports: 30th (29th)
They come off their bye at 0-4. With the 49ers at 4-1, they better get it going or they could be done by the midway point. It starts at Green Bay. Good luck.
Pro Football Talk: 31st (31st)
With two weeks to prepare for the Packers, maybe the Rams can pull off the upset. (Yes, I managed to type that while at all times maintaining a straight face.)
Pro Football Weekly: 31st (29th)
Facing Pack in Lambeau is not what winless, banged-up Rams need.
Fox Sports: 29th (28th)
I'm not sure the bye week helps this team all that much with Green Bay, Dallas and New Orleans coming up the next three weeks.
Sporting News: removed for being sloppy and saying it's been updated in the last 10 minutes when it's last week's power poll. Get your act together, SN.
National Football Post: 32nd (32nd)
The Rams reward coming off the bye week? A trip to Lambeau to take on Rodgers and the Packers. Good times.
Sports Illustrated: 30th (30th)
By now, Josh McDaniels has got to be wondering if it's him? The Rams' new offensive coordinator has been on the losing end of 21 of the past 26 games he's been involved in. That's 0-4 for this year's Rams, after losing 17 of his last 22 games as Denver's head coach in 2009-10. And you can probably make that 5-22 with the defending Super Bowl champion Packers on the opposite sideline this weekend.