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Missing starters

Try as you might, I just don't think you can blame the Rams results this season on injuries. 

However...injuries aren't helping the team either. We've seen the difference Steven Jackson can made when he returned to the lineup - along with some more inspired play up front - after effectively (his still injured return against the Cardinals in week 9) missing the previous five games.

Check this out. ESPN's Mike Sando runs the numbers to see how many players from each NFC West team have started all 12 games through week 13. 

For the Rams, just six...six players have started all 12 games this season. Some of that is not due to injury though, as the Rams have been forced to bench a few guys along the way. 

It's definitely not an excuse for the level of play we've seen from the Rams through the better part of this season, but it carries an impact to be sure. And thus it's question time. Why have the Rams been plagued by injuries to such an extent for two seasons in a row? In my own uninformed, not a doctor opinion several factors explain at least part of it. With aging players at so many key positions - e.g. Orlando Pace - that happens. Also, being a bad team contributes, e.g. the porous offensive line over the years has contributed to the injuries and general decline of Marc Bulger. I also think - and here's the uninformed part - that the team's poor play gets players beat up a little more. 

Still, I wonder if they don't need to review their strength and conditioning program. Chronic injury outbreaks like this, on the surface, seem to be more than just flukes. Or am I just being overly neurotic?