Jeff Fisher delivered his usual post-practice presser on Tuesday with a little more urgency. The St. Louis Rams are working on a short week, a game on Thursday night. The coach sounded a little tense in his tone, the slightest tinge annoyed by the injection of a prime time game into the schedule. He also shared a very serious appraisal of his opponent this week, the Arizona Cardinals.
They have everything. They are 4-0 because they have everything a football team needs.
The Cardinals defense:
"Well, you see an awfully large, talented defensive line and linebackers that can run and big safeties that can hit and corners that can cover and a scheme that's a little bit unique. You're not used to it. It's going to require everyone being at their best and being very sharp."
Size and every position.
It goes for the scheme too.
"Well, all schemes are different, but they move people around and they have different rush combinations and personnel groupings and things like that. Change positions ever so slightly with the guys up front and they create mismatches."
It's not just the defense either. Nope, the passing game has it all too.
"Well, they've got all three aspects of the passing game: they've got a short, intermediate passing game and then the play action, and they can take their deep shots. We have to defend them back to short. We've got to make sure we don't give up big plays, big, deep shots and then hope that we can get our hands on some balls. (Cardinals QB) Kevin's (Kolb) throwing the ball with accuracy and he's completing a lot of his passes, particularly because that group knows how to get open."
Everywhere. The whole team. They've got it.
"They've got a good group of players on both sides of the ball, excellent special teamers. Again, that's why they're 4-0 right now."