The St. Louis Rams have won 6 games the last three years, what many people don't talk about is our division record in the last three years. In 2007 when the St. Louis Rams beat the San Francisco 49ers 13-9. That's a long time f especially since they play these teams two times a season. The Rams have had a few close loses, I can remember a couple times where we lost to the Seahawks by a field goal.
Nonetheless this drought has to end soon if the Rams want to become relevant again in 2010. The good thing about the 2010 season is that the NFC West is weaker this year than the 2007 season and what I mean by that is that although they are considered better than the Rams they also have big questions marks and it wouldn't be a surprise if any one of the four teams win the division this year.
Are the favorite to win the division by much of the media and many fans of NFC West teams,The 49ers are coming off of an 8-8 season where the last game they ended it on a strong not by destroying the Rams 28-6. The 49ers have done a good job in picking up two good offensive lineman in the draft to hopefully give Alex Smith time to throw, and the running backs lead by Frank Gore more holes to run through. The 49ers have good receivers in Micheal Crabtree and Josh Morgan, a great tight end in Vernon Davis and a great running back in Gore.
The 49ers are going to be a running team coming out the gate next season. I expect this team to become like the Ravens have an offensive to not lose the games for you and the defense to win it. Also the 49ers have a great defense so I won't spend time talking about them their run support is excellent but their pass defense is spotty at best however.
The question marks
1. Can Frank Gore stay healthy? He is a great back, I would say talent wise he is right there with Steven Jackson but he gets injured a ton.
2. How good will Alex Smith be in the 2010 season ? He hasn't been the best quarterback he also hasn't been horrible , he just hasn't done what a former number one pick is supposed to do, especially looking at what Arron Rodgers is doing for the Packers.
Showdown with the St. Louis Rams week 10.
The 49ers will be coming off of a bye week and the Rams will also be coming off of a bye week. This will be a real difficult match up for the Rams I think the defense will do their job but the offense will have to have a good game, Steven Jackson usually doesn't have a good game against the 49ers.
I don't think that Sam Bradford can win a game against a great defense without Steven Jackson opening up the passing lanes, the 49ers will will bring a lot of heat and won't let Bradford get settled.
I think the end result will most likely be 49ers 21-Rams 10
Anquan Boldin, Karlos Dansby and Antrel Rolle. The Cardinals are hoping that offseason additions Joey Porter, Kerry Rhodes can bring production out of the positions which they lost, also hope that Steve Breaston and the other receivers can take the slack from Boldin's departure.
The Cardinals are heading into this season hoping that Matt Leinart can be the quarterback of the future that they have been waiting on him to be. The Cards are leaning towards being a balance team next season, they have many playmakers on the offensive ball. Ken Whisenhunt is of the Bill Cowher coaching tree expect more running with their double headed running back Tim Hightower and Beanie Wells, they both compliment each other well and they will become the most important factors if the Cardinals want to win the division. Also expect them to still try to get the ball in the hands of Larry Fitzgerald and the good crop of receivers that they have. If Matt Leinart doesn't show improvement this season expect the Cardinals too look elsewhere for their quarterback of the future.
The question marks
1.How will Matt Lineart handle being a full time starter? He has had multiple years to get the starting spot back, and he hasn't been able to win it. Plus you have the fact that when he came to play last season for the injured Kurt Warner he was doing good, but he didn't do nothing that was spectacular. If Matt Lineart can't perform better expect the Arizona Cardinals to run heavy and the wide receivers to have way less catches than last season, and the interceptions thrown to mount up since he will most likely force the ball to a double covered Fitzgerald.
2. How will the cardinals handle all the changes this offseason? With Kurt Warner retiring and losing three great contributors it wouldn't be surprising to see them take a couple steps back. They are hoping that Kerry Rhodes and Joey Porter will make their defense not take steps back which makes since since they both were great players in their own 3-4 defenses, plus adding Alan Flanca to the offensive line won't hurt it should help them get the running game going, on paper it looks like they didn't lose anything but how many times has that been said?
Showdown with the Rams week one.
I think that this game will be a better game then most are saying, The Rams will be hungry hoping to get their first win of 2010, The cardinals will more than likely come in the game cocky and thinking they will beat the rams easily. I think that this game could be the first win of the 2010 season for the Rams.
Our defense can slowdown their running game, and the game will be up to Matt Lineart to win and although he can do it with the weapons he has, it will have to be without Larry Fitzgerald because I am sure that the Rams will double cover him most of the game, Plus there is the fact that our secondary matches up pretty good against their receivers and if our defense can get a pass rush going our defense will do more than enough to have our offense win the game for us.
The thing is can the Rams offense score enough points to win us the game? I think they have a good chance I think that if Steven Jackson plays like he usually does and get close to a hundred yards, with Sam Bradford or whoever or quarterback is not forcing the ball our offense will have a good game. The key to everything is Steven Jackson and the return game putting the offense in good field position. I also expect this to be the first time Sam Bradford throws a touchdown if he plays.
End result Rams 17-Cardinals 14
This team used to be a measuring stick to the St.Louis Rams because they both used to be the two best in the division until the Rams started to fall apart, well it looks like it's time to get out the measuring sticks because these two teams are both rebuilding. Although the Seahawks aren't really showing it following a 5-11 season with Jim Mora the Seahawks have been going the flashy route with improving their team. They signed Pete Caroll to be their new head coach. Even though the Seahawks are rebuilding however they could be a good team, they are bringing back a grizzled veteran in Matt Hasselbeck, the Seahawks also had a very productive draft with bringing in Golden Tate, Russell Okung, and Earl Thomas heading their draft class.
The Seahawks are supposed to be implanting a new west coast system which will be like the system in which Jay Cutler flourished in, which means that if done correctly won't matter who runs the ball as long as the offensive line does good in their zone blocking schemes. The lead runner for the Seahawks most likely is third year player Justin Forsett but if Pete Caroll does like he did in USC the Seahawks will share the ball between at least two runners most likely Julius Jones, but they do have Leon Washington who could be a good spell back, and returner.
The Question Marks
1. The Seahawks have big name wide receivers but how good are they really? Before they signed Golden Tate they were mentioned with just about every wide receiver on the market, from Brandon Marshall to Santonio Holmes, Even after they got Golden Tate they were mentioned with Terell Owens and now Vincient Jackson.
2. Will the Seahawks defense be good? The Seahawks will have to find a pass rush next season if they want to be a factor in games, also it would be nice if Arron Curry has a good season since they will need him to be an effective pass rusher. If Arron Curry can become a big time player their linebacking core will be good, better if Leroy Hill can stop getting arrested. Also their secondary is suspect with Marcus Trufant and Earl Thomas the best players back there.
Showdown with the Rams Week 4
This game will test the Rams but I think the fact that it is a home game will help. Matt Hasselbeck will have time to get used to the new system just like Sam Bradford should be getting his feet wet. I can see this game being a good game the Rams defense will most likely focus on shutting down the running game and will try to make Hasselbeck uncomfortable by blitzing a lot. I think that this game will come down to the Rams cornerbacks playing against the Seahawks. Expect T.J. Houshmandzadeh to be double covered for some of the game but the most interesting match up will have to be how the Rams handle Golden Tate this game I expect him to be the X factor even though he is a rookie.
The Rams offensive could have a good passing game, depending on the level of the Seahawks pass rushif given time I think Sam Bradford will have his best statistical game of the season passing wise. Also I expect the Steven Jackson and Seahawks front seven to be the most interesting when the Rams have the ball. The St. Louis Rams will surprise the Seahawks and win this game if turnovers don't lose the games for us. If the Rams don't beat the Cardinals then I expect this to be their first win.
End Result Rams 21 Seahawks 17