Just a little more than 24 hours until the St. Louis Rams kickoff the 2010 season. You've waited an eternity already, so what's a few more hours? Let's dive in with a stroll around the interwebs for the latest and greatest.
First and foremost, Turf Show Radio is on the air tonight at 5 p.m. Central. We'll have all the info for you to call in and an open thread to post questions, comments, etc.
Bernie Miklasz has a look at rookie QBs and the running backs who love them. The data concurs that a strong running game is a huge help to a rookie QB, and Steven Jackson could make Sam Bradford's rookie season go that much smoother. Really, this pair could be the difference between 3 or 6 wins this year.
For his part Jackson is ready to lead by example. I'll say it again: I am impressed with the player Jackson has become, much more so because of the leadership role he's assumed with a young team.
Mike Sando says the Rams are making a statement by starting Bradford this week against a pretty tough defense.
Let's face it, all eyes will be on Sam Bradford tomorrow, but he'll need the help of the team around him to make a solid first impression. First impression? Yes, he's already made that with his preseason play for some, but this is his debut on the national stage, with media and a whole bunch of potential fans paying attention. Do well this week, and ticket sales could get a nice little jump at the Dome in week 3 when the Washington Redskins come to town.
The front seven is a much bigger group of guys this year, both at DT and the LBs. You can tell in reading that article that the coaches have really drilled the notion that a solid defense starts by shutting down the run. That would certainly help the pass rush, especially this week as the Cardinals bring only half of their running back duo. If the Rams can keep the Cardinals' ground game in check, they might be able to get after Derek Anderson and really cause some trouble.
Five keys to the game from the official Rams site.
The only injury to speak of this week is S James Butler, who figures to be a game time decision. As far as the starters go, there's no real surprises. However, the Rams are tight lipped about who'll be doing the kick and punt returns...it could be Danny Amendola and Mardy Gilyard.