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Random Ramsdom: December 10: St. Louis Rams - Saints Alive!

The Rams are coming off a pair of disappointing division losses to San Francisco and Arizona. This weekend they host the red-hot New Orleans Saints, who are fighting for home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. Can the Rams pull off the upset, and continue working towards a .500 season? Can the Washington Redskins continue their losing ways, and ensure a top-two pick for the Rams in the upcoming draft?

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Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports


Would love to see more of Stedman Bailey in the Rams' remaining games:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Small sample size but don&#39;t think it&#39;s overstating to say Bailey is most trustworthy Rams WR in terms of routes/hands on team right now.</p>&mdash; Nick Wagoner (@nwagoner) <a href="">December 8, 2013</a></blockquote>

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The Rams still have the number two overall pick in the draft after this weekends action:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Draft order via current SOS, per <a href="">@ESPNStatsInfo</a> 1. HOU, 2. STL (from WAS), 3. ATL, 4. MIN, 5. OAK, 6. JAX, 7. CLE, 8. BUF, 9. TB, 10. PIT.</p>&mdash; Kevin Seifert (@SeifertESPN) <a href="">December 9, 2013</a></blockquote>

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Those damn penalties:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Rams have committed 3rd-most penalties in NFL, w/100. And 6th most penalty yards w/807.</p>&mdash; Jim Thomas (@jthom1) <a href="">December 9, 2013</a></blockquote>

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Howard Balzer puts it all into perspective:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p><a href="">@smitty2244</a> They took over a team that won 15 games in five years and had little foundation of talent. Tough to win on road. ARZ 6-1 at home</p>&mdash; Howard Balzer (@HBalzer721) <a href="">December 9, 2013</a></blockquote>

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Likely Scenarios For 2014 St. Louis Rams' Free Agents: Rant Sports NFL

The Rams' offensive line will come into focus early in the off season, as Rodger Saffold, Chris Williams, Shelley Smith, and Tim Barnes all become free agents at the end of the season.

The top 5 rookies in St. Louis Rams history: Cover 32 Rams

Torry Holt gets the nod for best rookie season. Zac Stacy sneaks on to the list, in the number 5 position.

Taking A Step Back: Student Of The Game - Cody Davis

Safety Cody Davis [via his own blog] shares his rookie experiences as a St. Louis Ram.

Looking Ahead: 2014 Salary Cap Estimates: Over The Cap

The St. Louis Rams are among the teams that could have salary cap trouble in 2014. Luckily, they have a cap wizard in Kevin Demoff to guide them through.

Upon Further Review

St. Louis Rams - Week 14

Arizona Cardinals - Week 14

San Francisco 49er's - Week 14

Seattle Seahawks - Week 14

The ESPN NFC West correspondents deliver their weekly, in-depth, look at the 4 teams comprising the NFC West.

Rookie Highlight Reel: Tavon Austin

Tavon Austin Regular Season Highlights (Rams) (NFL) (via M.I.L.F)

Rams Have Offensive Line Questions: Howard Balzer - KSDK

Notwithstanding Jake Long and Barrett Jones, the Rams' 8 remaining offensive linemen all have question marks surrounding them heading into the off season.

Rams' 2014 NFL Draft: Trade Scenarios In The Top Ten: Ramblin' Fan

"Given the history of Les Snead and Jeff Fisher so far in St. Louis, there is little doubt that the Rams will make a heavy effort to trade out of that high spot, still landing one of their "top targets" and stockpiling additional picks in either this year’s or next year’s draft."

Pro Bowl Flashback: Jack Youngblood:

When the Pro Bowl actually meant something, especially to Jack Youngblood.

College Football Bowl Games Schedule Finalized: SB Nation

35 games dot this years schedule, with many intriguing match ups. These games represent the last opportunity to see many of our draft favorites in a live game.

On This Day In Sports History

1939 - The Green Bay Packers win the NFL Championship, defeating the New York Giants 27-0.

Playing the NFL Draft "what if" game: Nick Wagoner - ESPN

Nick Wagoner examines some of the possibilities of what could happen if the Rams end up with the #1 overall pick in the draft.

Honest Headlines - Week 14: Sports Pickle

Sports Pickle's take on what the headlines really should look like after the weekend games.

A Draft To Ponder: New York Times

A brief look at which teams will be in the top ten for the 2014 NFL Draft, and what they may be looking to accomplish with their picks.

Rams continue their ugly swoon in loss to the Cardinals: Cover 32 Rams

Not a lot of positives came out of the game versus the Cardinals. I was impressed with the play of WR Stedman Bailey. Here's hoping he gets a lot more playing time in the Rams' remaining games.

Stat Facts Of The Week: Toxic Differential

Toxic Differential Leaders
Team Turnover Differential Big Play Differential Toxic Differential
1 Seattle Seahawks 12 38 50
2 Philadelphia Eagles 9 37 46
3 San Francisco 49ers 6 18 24
4 Carolina Panthers 10 11 21
5 Denver Broncos -2 19 17
6 Cincinnati Bengals -1 14 13
7 Kansas City Chiefs 15 -2 13
8 New Orleans Saints 3 10 13
9 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 13 -2 11
10 St. Louis Rams 7 1 8
11 Washington Redskins -3 8 5
12 Arizona Cardinals 0 2 2
13 Detroit Lions -10 9 -1
14 Houston Texans -14 12 -2
15 Miami Dolphins 2 -5 -3
16 Cleveland Browns -7 4 -3
17 Buffalo Bills -1 -2 -3
18 Oakland Raiders -3 0 -3
19 New England Patriots 6 -10 -4
20 Green Bay Packers -4 0 -4
21 Tennessee Titans 0 -6 -6
22 New York Jets -18 12 -6
23 Pittsburgh Steelers -4 -3 -7
24 Chicago Bears 7 -17 -10
25 Indianapolis Colts 6 -16 -10
26 New York Giants -13 -2 -15
27 Baltimore Ravens -5 -11 -16
28 San Diego Chargers -3 -14 -17
29 Minnesota Vikings -7 -12 -19
30 Dallas Cowboys 12 -35 -23
31 Atlanta Falcons -11 -22 -33
32 Jacksonville Jaguars -2 -36 -38

On August 19, I wrote about the importance of the "toxic differential", in an article for Turf Show Times (link). The Rams, after 13 games, rank 10th in the league in this vital statistic. It's evident there is a correlation between the "toxic differential", and an NFL teams success on the field. One of the bright spots for the Rams this season has been their improved turnover differential. This bodes well for next season. The chart is courtesy of "Sporting Charts".

The Pressers

Jeff Fisher Press Conference - December 9

Jeff Fisher Press Conference - December 5

Jeff Fisher Press Conference - December 6

Jeff Fisher Press Conference - Post-Game

Rodger Saffold Press Conference - Post-Game

All press conferences are courtesy of the St. Louis Rams Official Website

Tory Holt discusses Chris Givens and the other Rams' wide receivers:

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Tony Softli one-on-one with Rams defensive tackle Kendall Langford:

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Robert Quinn on the Rams' struggles against division opponents:

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2014 NFL Mock Draft: Walter Football

The Rams select OT Jake Matthews and S Ha'Sean Clinton-Dix in the first round, CB Kyle Fuller in the second round, and QB A.J. McCarron in the third round. All of the picks are very solid and fill needs.

Rams Report Card: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Jeff Gordon grades a below-average performance by the Rams against the Cardinals on Sunday.

Who's in the QB market and who might be?: CBS Sports

Jason La Canfora identifies 5 teams definitely in the market for a QB, and 6 teams who might be [including the Rams].

Rams crossing line from aggression to stupidity: Rams 101

"It's been said that football is a game of "controlled aggression." Unfortunately for the St. Louis Rams, they haven't learned to control their youthful aggression yet, and it's a big reason why this team is 5-8 after 13 games."


Arizona gives Rams that old sinking feeling: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Jeff Fisher seems determined to to right this ship, sooner than later:

"We’re gonna get better," said a grim Jeff Fisher afterward. "We’re gonna take it one game at a time and we’re gonna get better."

No More Rams Excuses: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Bernie Miklasz believes Jeff Fisher will build a winner in St. Louis. He also believes there are too many excuses for the lack of development on this Rams team. Patience is a virtue. Watch out for 2014!

Rapid Reaction: Nick Wagoner - ESPN

In a game with few positives, Stedman Bailey stood out for his exemplary play. Would love to see him get more reps in the Rams' 3 remaining games.

Three things revisited - Rams vs. Cardinals: ESPN NFC West

Too many penalties, too much pressure allowed on Kellen Clemens, and poor pass defense pretty much tells the story of Sunday's game. One can add the lack of a rushing game to the list.

Rams' Tavon Austin has a big third quarter run: S.I. - Fansided

Amazing speed displayed by Tavon Austin on this 56 yard run. Worth watching again and again.

Ten Takeaways From Sunday's Loss In Arizona: 101 ESPN

One takeaway will surely stick in my mind:

"We may not like what we’re seeing now, but it will pay off in the long run."

Running Game Hits Roadblock In Loss To Arizona:

Perhaps Jeff Fisher said it best:

"I thought we’d do a better job than we did, but we couldn’t run the football today and that’s disappointing," Fisher said. "They did an outstanding job against our run game. We turned the ball over, we had too many penalties and we got beat."

NFC West Gap Grows Larger For Rams: ESPN NFC West

With the emergence of the Arizona Cardinals, is there any doubt the NFC West is the toughest division in football?


Regression A Troubling Trend For NFL's Youngest Squad: Rant Sports NFL

I'm not sure about the Rams "regressing" this season. All bets were off once Sam Bradford went down with a season-ending injury. 2014 will be a breakout season for this team, in a fashion similar to what happened in Seattle and Carolina in the last 2 seasons.

Quick thoughts on the Rams' loss to the Cardinals: Ramblin' Fan

"In fairness to this young St. Louis Rams squad, they are battling their hearts out, and their losses continue to come against (for the most part) playoff-caliber competition."

Rams still plagued by penalties: ESPN NFC West

One of the more frustrating things to watch is the plethora of penalties the Rams commit on a regular basis. There is a fine line between controlled aggression and recklessness. The Rams will need to address this in depth, both in the remaining three games and during the off season.

Week 14 - Rams Rookie Review: Nick Wagoner - ESPN

Stedman Bailey and Alec Ogletree rate high marks for their efforts in the game against the Arizona Cardinals.

Mike Shanahan might shut down RG3 for rest of season: Shutdown Corner

Good news for the Rams? The Redskins season keeps taking twists and turns. The latest is coach Shanahan deciding at some point this week whether to end Griffin's season to protect him - and the team - from possible injury going into the off season. Stay tuned...and keep your draft order close by.

Refo: Rams @ Cardinals - Week 14: Pro Football Focus

Robert Quinn and Kendall Langford both grade out very well for the Rams in Sunday's game. Langford has shown much improvement over the course of the season.

Tavon Austin day-to-day with ankle injury: Nick Wagoner - ESPN

Austin's ankle injury appears to be relatively minor, which is good news for a Rams offense that has struggled the past two games.

Strongest and weakest positions in the 2014 NFL Draft: Bleacher Report

Offensive and Defensive Linemen are the deepest positions in this years draft. The composition of the draft will likely change as underclassmen declare. QB Marcus Mariota going back to school changes the top ten in dramatic fashion.

St. Louis Rams Weekly Salary "Re-Cap"

The Rams currently have $17,718 in available cap space, easily the lowest in the league. The Rams will begin the off season with a tight cap space situation, one that will need to be remedied before the start of the free agency period. Although Scott Wells' season has ended, the Rams have not placed him on Injured Reserve as of today. The reason for this is they likely can't afford to. The Rams would have to add an additional player to the roster at league minimum, which would force them over the salary cap.

The Jeff Fisher Show - December 9, 2013:

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Blast From The Past: Classic Rock Tuesday: Led Zeppelin - Stairway To Heaven

Led Zeppelin - Stairway to Heaven Live (HD) (via YeOldeRock)

Have a great Tuesday and a Ramtastic week!