First off, I want to thank VT for rolling through Turf Show Radio with me on Saturday. It's not easy to voice coherent thoughts for a full hour, and he did it with ease. But even more thanks has to go to all the callers from the show. I'm glad we had so many jump in on everything from Randy Moss to Super Bowl dark horses. It was a great show, and one worth loading into your iPod:
And just a couple thoughts on the Niners game, and then I think I'm done with it.
I said it at the end of the game more than once, but this is the game we deserved. We can talk about Brandon Gibson's backwards momentum, Daniel Fells' drop, the Atogwe PI call, playcalling in the second half, Jason Brown's blocking issues, Spags' unwillingness to call for a long FG attempt, and all kinds of other things that we didn't do well. The point is that we didn't do a lot of things well, and it doesn't matter what they were in specificity.
The Rams are one of the few teams in the NFL whose record reflects their actual talent level. We're 4-5 overall and 0-4 on the road because we're just not that good. You can almost pare it completely down to that simple answer.
If you're down 17-20 late in the 4th quarter and your drive down the field to either tie or win in regulation relies on your one-handed RB on a wheel out route despite the fact you have one of the conference's best quarterbacks, your passing game sucks. And that's the biggest issue with our offense. It isn't run blocking, pass blocking or backup running back. Our passing game absolutely sucks.
When your defense is designed largely to cover up the fact that you have a Pro Bowl caliber MLB and third string caliber OLBs, your intermediate passing game sucks. We can talk about how good Bartell and Fletcher are down the field and how successful we've been in rushing the pass rush, but the easiest hole to exploit on this team is OLB assignments. You can't allow a successive 3rd & 32 and 4th & 18 to result in a first down and expect to win many games. Our outside intermediate passing defense sucks.
And lastly, I don't know how to fit this into the "this sucks theme," so I'm just going to say it: Spags isn't willing to lay his balls on the line yet. That's the bottom line. Every coach, when pressed into action, will man up. You don't get a head coaching position in the NFL without the balls to take your chances. Spags hasn't yet as the Rams HC, from the field goal attempt in Jacksonville last year to yesterday's delay of game pooch punt. I'm not saying he doesn't have balls, but he hasn't had to drop them on the table like Louie from the State. Part of that is his comfort level. He felt comfortable that his defense would hold. He felt comfortable that even if it didn't, Sam and AxJax could pull out a W. He's only got a season and a half yet to toe that line.
In 2011, the Rams should be competing for the NFC West division with relative confidence. That confidence can't just come from Sam Bradford, Steven Jackson, James Laurinaitis and Chris Long (who is turning into an absolute machine). It has to come from, and honestly start with, Steve Spagnuolo. If he isn't willing to put his reputation on the line to the same degree as his players during those 60 minutes of battle he demands of his players, then he's going to have a really angry fan base at the end of the 2011 season.
Roll call after the jump. Dump your Monday night anger here as Donovan McNabb's Redskins (minus two-minute drills) take on his old team, the Eagles.
Roll Call: VTramsFan, Edggy, 3k, JTPirate, ram_rod, leadhead, ksmooth, thebeast72, shostag, Redbirds_n_Horns, loyal2therams, Smoooth Criminal, Sundowner, TrojanRam, Raul Johnson, mooseknuckles41, Ramfest, Pat Willie, stlcardsfan4, LARams1968, AWolfAtTheDoor, mysterui, Carneros, IdGladlySellMySoulJust2KeepTheRamsAlive, TransplantedRamsFan, stlfan2004, Match Day 5, douchiedude, zaviex, Ramshackled, classic3283, cOOkies 4 cUddy, blindmouse, Buck Nasty87, dbcouver, Camo702, thehalobender, TheBirds, MyGirlMakesMeRamwiches, Sofanumber1, stuman89, Jombari, NCRam55, DiscoJer, moy, Infemous, thisguy, MathB, markg1127, kinzav29, Throw, Skunkburner, central1188, buckeyefan55, Marty McKeown, RamsQb5, wchtg6, LAraman, JordansDad, jlcdb70, stgeorgie, B_Edelman, weezul12, athooks, Swatsky, hr, mrgenious, RamsFan7, riotmute, parliamentlite, gnick55, OGC Reds, mattyp, Brett Gall, ChuckyofNorris, eaglesinmd, Sggladden, Spielman, Both Hawks Suck!, StopSpe, phx suns, d2ds, ramsaj28, cubfred, RamintheUK, CFB_fan, Thomas W, gingerredboy, RamChop, bailorg
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|Match Day 5||40|
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|Both Hawks Suck!||1|