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This was a great game by both teams on a soggy day in Miami. While a win would have made me happy, this game presented quite a few positives for the Rams. The first one being how well they did without Danny Amendola in the line up. The Rams had 462 yards in total offense, with Sam Bradford completing 26 of 39 attempts for 300 yards on the day. ..
Miami's Ryan Tannehill completed 21 of 29 attempts for 173 yards. But the biggest story of the day was the Rams rushing defense holding Reggie Bush and Co. to 19 net yards. Game balls for the defensive line today?
There were a few miscues that made me groan, but I'll hit those in the Quick Five observations in just a second. Right now though, I'd like to tip my hat to Sam Bradford, who showed more top flight quarterback skill in this game than he has all season. He moved in the pocket, ran the ball well - scoring the 2012 Rams FIRST rushing touchdown of the year. Bradford showed his best accuracy to date, hitting tight window plays when they counted.
On to the Quick Five:
While the Rams defense didn't get to Ryan Tannehill all thet often (2 sacks - Long and Dunbar), they did show an amazing performance against the run. Holding one of the NFL's leading rushers (R. Bush) to only 17 yards on 12 attempts. Michael Brockers and Kendall Langford sealed the middle of the line of scrimmage the entire game. We know the Rams defense can rush the passer, but run defense has been suspect up til now. Simply an outstanding effort, and kudos to the Rams' defense once again.
The Rams special teams suffered today. While Greg Zuerlein made his first two field goals, he missed another two that should have been made. He missed another from what would have been an NFL record 66 yards, but I give him a pass on that one. Why? Because though it missed, it still hit ten feet up in the netting. That kick would have been good from 70+ yards if it didn't have the little tail-off GZ's kicks seemed to have today. I called a friend who plays Rugby, and can kick the ball a country mile. He said a tail-off to the left by a right footed kicker many times has to do with the ball being wet, or what he calls "heavy air"... Jenoris Jenkins needs to head to "Punt Returner school" next week, because some of his decision were just a tad, well... Nuts?
The Rams running game pummeled a Miami defense that was ranked #1 in the NFL against the rush. Steven Jackson (12 rushes, 52 yards - 4.3 Average) and Daryl Richardson (11 rushes, 76 yards - 6.9 average) helped the Rams win the time of possession battle 33:23 minutes to 26:37. They need to get better in the red zone though. Just a little embarrassing when the quarterback has the team's only rushing touchdown in 2012, eh?
While I've touched on Janoris Jenkins - punt returner, but I'd like to touch on Janoris Jenkins - the corner back - for just a second. While me may have to face the fact that young Mr. Jenkins is a gun-slinging kind of player, there's no excuse for what appear to be mental lapses in single coverage. He need to realize the opposing quarterback isn't staring at him because of his nifty pink RGIII arm-sleeve. This is the fourth week that Jenkins has become befuddled on at least one play, and let the opposing wide receiver simply drift down the field behind him. Has anyone told him he has Craig Dahl as his top coverage guy? Just sayin...
Brandon Gibson has convinced me we have a different wide receiver than in years past. He's showing great hands, and even a bit of Brandon Lloyd-esk esprit on some of his catches.He was by far the best Rams receiver today against Miami. His one handed catch for a key first down in the fourth quarter showed me the guy we thought he was when he was picked up in 2009. Keep this up Brandon, because I know another Brandon who may just turn into a fan of yours very soon. The second Brandon has been dreaming of a day where he can yell "Twin-zees" after a catch. Show him some love DC!