Rams Tank Against Cardinals

Christian Petersen

The Cardinals - by most Rams fans standards - are right where St. Louis should be. The Arizona team continued to rebound against the wounded Rams. It wasn't pretty.

It's pretty clear what the Rams need to do on offense to be successful. They need to set up the pass with a methodical power run game. When Zac Stacy and Benny Cunningham are unable to get the ground game going, the Rams are forced to rely on Kellen Clemens, and as we saw today, it isn't pretty.

That isn't to say Kellen Clemens isn't a capable backup - he's put up solid, if unspectacular numbers for the past month. But when he's called upon to be more than the steward he is, his sloppy decision making comes back to bite the Rams in the ass.

As for the running game, it's largely not Stacy's fault. While he had a few opportunities to bounce back outside for some modest gains, he largely had nowhere to go. I'm not sure why the Rams decided to shuffle the offensive line around, even if Harvey Dahl was back. Numbers don't lie, and the Rams had plenty of them while Rodger Saffold was at right guard.

While the receivers had a decent day, it's too little to late. The Rams could surely use Sammy Watkins or Marquise Lee in May.

There isn't much you can say about this defense that would make it feel any better. They've got way too much talent to give up so many points. They have six first and second rounders starting and at this point, they're all 'Fisher players'. I'm not sure what the coaching staff sees in all of them, but they've got to become more consistent.

As far as the secondary goes, I can understand - to a point - the penalties. It's clear the mentality of this team is to be aggressive, but it's up to the men in charge to reign in Janoris Jenkins. He's been called for holding multiple times in the last few weeks. He should look to Trumaine Johnson as an example on how to be aggressive, yet smart.

On a final note for the defense, would it be so bad if the Rams drafted Jadaveon Clowney or Anthony Barr? They just can't generate constant pressure. When they can't, they don't win - simple as that.

Jeff Fisher was brought in because he had experience, a winning record and a certain swagger that the Rams hadn't had for nearly a decade. He took over a young team with a few key pieces and many holes. They were inconsistent. They struggled. Yet every so often, the stars aligned and they would put on a show.

Two years in, not much has changed. They still are young, they still are missing key pieces and they still are maddeningly inconsistent. The swagger has been replaced with boneheaded penalties.

This isn't a rant on Jeff Fisher - you aren't a head coach in the NFL with two decades of experience if you aren't any good. But the clock is ticking. When you have Arizona, Kansas City and Philadelphia fighting for playoff spots a year after they were bottom dwellers (all with worse records than the Rams last year, I might add), you can't help but wonder...

Why not us?

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