In just a few short hours the Rams will do battle with the second team of the Baltimore Ravens. The established starters will have two and 1/3 quarters to polish their skills, while those fighting for a roster spot will get one last chance to impress the new coaching staff. Here's what I believe it will take to pull of a victory in the Dome tonight.
Bradford has to get the ball out in time. Last week against an aggressive Cowboys pass rush, the line looked like a colander draining spaghetti. Count on much the same tonight, although the line should look a little better. Sam must get better at his initial reads and his progressions. During practice this week, I hope Bradford took some reps where he had to go to his 1st or 2nd read often. He may not have time tonight to go to the dump off man or his 3rd or 4th option.
By now the Rams wide receivers should have a great grasp of the offensive system. In order for the Rams to win tonight they must use that system mastery and their skills to gain separation from coverage. They must help Bradford get rid of the ball by getting rid of their defenders. With a few wide outs on the bubble, look for impressive effort from the corps.
The defensive line, while pressuring Romo pretty well, still failed to maintain their gaps consistently during running plays. I know, I know, the Cowboys didn't light it up on the ground, they torched us through the air. Tonight the Ravens have four running backs looking to be the back up to Ray Rice. They will be making the most of their chances. If the line can't maintain their gaps, the Ravens will set a preseason rushing record against them.
Fisher has shown little care for winning preseason games, and more care for practicing game situations and evaluating players talent and their grasp of the system. With the starters playing the entire half and possibly the first series or two of the second half, I wouldn't be surprised to see Fisher going for the win against the Raven's second squad. Therefore Jeff will have to change hats, from talent evaluator to real time coach. Fisher doesn't want to go into week one of the regular season with a loss. This will be the first real coaching battle of the season for Jeff Fisher. I have all the confidence in the world he can out coach the opposition.
Thanks for the read, and please leave your comments and keys to the game below. As always, GO RAMS! Enjoy the game.