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St. Louis Rams: A Solid Stop Gap QB????

I can't help but to not be in a complete panic with the Rams current quarterback situation. For some reason I have a certain level of confidence, and I believe one of these guys could provide somewhat of a spark if given the opportunity....

Michael Thomas

There has been a lot of talk going around the web and on television about how atrocious the Rams quarterback situation is right now. I agree that the current state of the Rams' most important position is not ideal, but I also think that the team has a decent player on the roster. Is he the long term answer? Probably not. Could he develop over the course of the season into a solid stop gap quarterback? Well, that's actually pretty feasible.

As the week progresses, it is looking more and more likely that Shaun Hill will not be available. Fisher has confirmed that he would be a game time decision. Should Hill not be able to go, I have found myself having a certain confidence that Austin Davis will get the job done.

There are a few traits with Davis that I like and always have liked about him. But there are two in particular that stand out the most. The first being his willingness to take shots down field. Davis is not afraid to go for the home run. He only has an average arm, so his shots are not based on throwing as hard and as far as possible. Instead he relies on timing, which is actually the better choice (unless you have a freak like Calvin Johnson, than let it rip). I would expect the Rams to run the ball a lot against the Buccaneers and try to set up 5-8 shots down field off of play action. After three years of being in this offense, no quarterback on the roster knows this offense better than Davis. While I believe he will take his shots, I believe he will also be wise enough to know when to go to the next option. Truthfully he knows the offense well enough, that Schotty should not feel compelled to hold anything back.

The second trait that really stands out to me is Davis' ability to extend plays. He has some wiggle to him, and it allows him to escape pressure and get outside the pocket. He can scramble - of course he is no 2004 Michael Vick or anything - and pick up a few yards, but I like his scrambling ability for a different reason. One thing that he does very well is keep his eyes down field. When he breaks the pocket, he usually does it with the intent to still throw the ball. This can really throw a defense off, as now when the quarterback is running around you usually take your eyes off of the receiver just long enough for them to get open. If you don't, then the quarterback will take off and run up-field.

Davis brings some attributes to this offense that no other quarterback - not even Sam Bradford - can bring. Being a young quarterback with only 23 pass attempts on his resume, one has to expect some mistakes along the way. By no means do I expect a flawless game. But considering the things that Davis does bring to the table, I can see him bring somewhat of a spark-plug to this offense, and overall developing into a a solid stop gap quarterback.