Apparently, there's been no adequate determination on Bulger's status yet. It's been reported that he'll undergo another test on Monday to determine his status for next week.
Obviously, the passing game automatically becomes a little more suspect with Frerotte starting, and the Falcons will likely take a two pronged approach to exposing Frerotte. Stopping Steven Jackson tops their list. By taking away the run, as we've seen too many times this season, the Rams offense goes into a kind of shock, looking lost and mistakes follow. The Falcons will have Lawyer Milloy featured in a lot of 8 in the box formations.
This puts even more of the onus of moving the ball forward onto Frerotte, something they're no doubt hoping for after watching tape of last week's game. Of course, Frerotte is able to run this offense, and while he may lack some of Bulger's talent, he was hand picked remember by Linehan because of his ability to run this offense in a pinch, putting some pressure on Linehan. The plot thickens.
The Falcons have struggled with #2 wide receivers, struggled to the tune of a 54% DVOA. Hopefully, the playcalling will make better use of McMichael this week; the Falcons have a 40%+ DVOA against TEs. Actually, some quick screen passes to McMichael while the bulk of the Falcon defense is occupying themselves with Steven Jackson might be pretty successful. But Linehan's playcalling is nothing if not confounding. And if the Rams get a lead and instantly slip into string it out mode before the five minute mark of the fourth quarter, I just might turn the TV off and find some paint waiting to dry.
I'm actually excited to see how the defense plays. More rushes from a 3-4 would seem to be in order against a team whose quarterbacks are really struggling. Having James Hall out (not to mention Pisa) obviously hurts the Rams. But Haslett has done a fine job of finding ways to compensate for key injuries on defense. Could be a good day for Carriker with more time at DE in those 3-4 sets.
Coaching change stories are appearing fast and furious now. Mostly, though, they're pure speculation, and Linehan's an easy target. Obviously, on former head coach whose phone will be ringing constantly soon is Marty Schottenheimer. This Denver Post article puts the Rams on the potential list. I still wonder about Haslett getting a promotion and a new offensive team coming in, but trying to guess what's going to happen is about as fruitful as predicting a sweep through these next five games.
Questions with the Falcoholic later today.