Rams got a boost from Rodger Saffold's return

Brian Bahr

The return of Rodger Saffold at left tackle was a big help for the Rams this week.

We've said plenty about Danny Amendola's return to action this week. His stats, as well as Sam Bradford's should tell you all you need to know about just how important he is to the offense. Another injured player returned to duty this week for the St. Louis Rams, Rodger Saffold. The left tackle was just as important to Bradford's big game last week.

Saffold slotted right back into the mix at left tackle without missing a snap, as if he hadn't been out of action since Week 2. The third-year lineman allowed exactly zero pressures on the quarterback against the 49ers. No hits, no hurries, and no sacks came through Saffold's area of the field, according to the numbers from Pro Football Focus.

The Rams offensive line had a solid day all around. Left guard Shelley Smith, per the PFF charting stats, allowed a total of seven pressures, including two sacks. He also had a penalty for a false start on third-and-9 in the third quarter. Barry Richardson allowed two hurries and took away 15 yards on a holding and a false start penalty.

I don't know what kind of miracle words Paul Boudreau says to the offense line before each game, but it's working. With Saffold back in the mix, this is a much better unit.

The two major areas of concern for the Rams are left guard and right tackle. Scott Wells is practicing again, and could be back on the field for this week's game against the Jets. If that's the case, Robert Turner, who has done a fine job filling in at center, would probably be the starter at left guard.

Going forward, the Rams still need to think about depth for the unit, despite doing miraculous things with the backups this season.

If this group can stay healthy for the rest of the season, the Rams could put together a nice run to cap off the year.

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