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Rams Win By 2 Seconds...Sort of... Quick 5+1

Tracking the ups and downs of the Rams' 19-17 win over the Buccaneers.

Cliff McBride

A ten second run off rule - with only 8 seconds left to play - for a player who's injured on a team without a timeout left to call, sealed the deal for the Rams 19 - 17 road win against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Starting today for an injured Shaun Hill, the Rams' third string quarterback Austin Davis stacked a 99.1 QB rating on his 22 of 29, 235 yard passing performance. Let's take a quick look at the arrows to see to helped - or hurt - on the way to St. Louis' first win in the 2014 NFL season...

Austin Davis... Of course I have to start with the guy who was never planned to see the field in 2014 by Jeff Fisher. Injuries shrank the quarterback options for the Rams, and Davis stepped up in brilliant fashion today. Under pressure by an injury riddled Tampa Bay defensive line all day, the young quarterback out of Southern Mississippi played beyond anyone's expectations, except maybe Davis' own. That would be "our bad", not having faith in a fiery kid, who single handed steered this win.

Brian Quick continues to impress... Quick is beginning to blossom. Whats more, he's become a favored target by whoever the Rams have throwing the ball. This speaks volumes of how Quick has grown into his NFL role as a #1 receiver. His seven catches on nine targets for 74 yards aren't numbers that'll turn many heads. But if you look at the plays where he's been asked to catch the ball - in heavy coverage - you'll understand why many are thoroughly impressed with Brian Quick thus far.

The Rams offensive line... With four defensive ends on the injured list prior to today's game, Tampa Bay should've been a rather easy outing for the Rams offensive line. It wasn't, and quarterback Austin Davis will have the bruises to prove it tomorrow. They allowed only two sacks, but the level of hurries and pressures they permitted was scary. Run blocking was so-so, limiting the Rams once highly anticipated run offense to manage just 119 rushing yards. Weaknesses at right guard and center need to be addressed...

The Rams' defense looks more like it belongs in the NFC East, not West. With Chris Long injured, Tampa Bay focused on keeping Robert Quinn in check, and it worked for the most part. Quinn hurried Tampa's Josh McCown, but without a cohort helping to press the pocket from the left side, sacks were something he could only get close to... Aaron Donald played well, showing flashes of what he could become. The Rams' linebacker corp looked shaky at times, but held their ground far better than they did against Minnesota only a week ago. Where things are starting to get interesting centers around how much Rams' defensive coordinator Gregg Williams is willing to set rookie corner back E.J. Gaines out on an island by himself. Jeff Fisher: Other teams' offensive coordinators are watching... I'm just sayin'...

Given up on as possible 'cut bait" prior to the season - by me included - Austin Pettis (3 catches for 46 yards) may very well be the hero of the Game for St. Louis. His key catches, especially the 27 yard completion with 1:55 to go in the 4th quarter, earned him Rams' fans' respect. With Tavon Austin's injury status still unknown, Pettis may very well prove why Jeff Fisher decided to keep him on the 53 man roster.

The Rams' special teams won this game. Greg Zuerlien kicked four field goals, and the defensive special teams blocked a punt and field goal. Add in a turnover on a interception by Rodney McLeod - just because I can - and fortune smiled on the Rams today.