What a game! I was upset when the Rams coughed up a heartbreaking loss last week, and I'm the exact opposite today. The Rams were phenomenal yesterday. The defense played better down the stretch, but the real story was the offense. Simply put, the Rams offense was the best they had been in ten years. They moved the ball at will and effortlessly shredded the Redskins defense (which was helmed my former Rams coach Jim Haslett, who was outmatched in every way imaginable by Brian Schottenheimer).
This could be an exciting season folks.
Sam Bradford, QB
First an foremost, Bradford was unstoppable. He had an error with the interception to London Fletcher, but to the credit of the determination of the team, it was righted a mere four plays later with a blocked punt. Other then that, Bradford SCORCHED the Redskins defense. He was accurate with both short and long passes and had amazing pocket presence. This was because of the offensive line, that, like Bradford, came out of nowhere.
The skittish, jumpy Bradford we saw last year was not in the house yesterday. He wasn't even in the same country. This is the Bradford we've been waiting for ladies and gentlemen. More play like this from him will result in many more victories.
Danny Amendola and Brandon Gibson, WR
Danny had a career day, but both Gibson and Amendola were impressive. Gibson has quietly put together two good games and may finally be tapping the potential he displayed in every preseason game he's ever played in. Amendola was shifty, quick and nimble all day- Josh McDaniels was an idiot for even thinking about replacing him.
Granted, this type of production shouldn't be expected every week from Amendola. However, if he and Gibby play like they have been, the Rams WR woes could be over. It will be interesting to see who Austin Pettis replaces when he returns.
Jo-Lonn Dunbar, OLB
Dunbar has been a fantastic addition to the Rams defense. He isn't a superstar, but he can go sideline-to-sideline and make plays. This type of solid play from a outside linebacker hasn't been seen in a long time.
Darryl Richardson, RB
I called this last week. Richardson had a nearly game-losing fumble, but was sensational otherwise. He was inches away from blowing up the fantasy stats this week (he nearly had two touchdowns). He also converted a crucial two point conversion. Credit the offensive line for putting in great work. Both Richardson and Steven Jackson had good games.
There were issues with the Rams yesterday, there is no denying. Janoris Jenkins was jumpy, likely because of the extreme emotions running through the game and the safeties continued to be unimpressive. Isaiah Pead was replaced by Chris Givens on kick returns and looks firmly planted in the doghouse. However, this was all overshadowed by the absolutely shitty officiating.
This game was the worst officiating I've ever seen for any sport- it's nothing short of insulting to the fans and players. The first half alone was abysmal. They didn't follow the rules (ignoring mandatory replays), didn't call penalties, called penalties on ridiculous plays and made boneheaded decisions after boneheaded decisions.
The NFL needs to suck it up and get a deal done before somebody gets seriously hurt because of their officiating (pending the results of Rodger Saffold's injury from a play that shouldn't have happened).
With that monster negative off my chest, I'm going to be living large this week. The Rams delivered one of their best performances in years. Savor it.