By now, we're no strangers to criticism of St. Louis Rams offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer. His work with the team and his playbook have still left the team struggling for answers about how to score points on a consistent basis, for two seasons and two games into a third.
It sounds like the Rams players are getting frustrated with Schottenheimer too.
Here's Andy Strickland from InsideSTL discussing some players who shared their thoughts about Schottenheimer with him during a Friday radio appearance.
I ran into a couple Rams players last night at a party, and I'm not going to say who they were. There is a lot of criticism being thrown around of the offensive coordinator, Brian Schottenheimer. What these guys kept telling me was he has a real lack of ability of getting the ball in his playmakers' hands in a situation where they can have success. We've talked about it before ... Tavon Austin, handing the ball off to him, running straight up the A gap, that's not going to do it.
It's making me wonder internally how frustrated these players are, how much criticism they deserve versus Brian Scottenheimer. I asked these guys 'what about all the checkdowns we see all the time from Sam Bradford in the past and we're still seeing it right now?' That's the way these guys are coached, and it frustrates the wide receivers because they almost don't have time to complete their route ...
A lot of this does come down to coaching.
Make of that what you will. By the end of Schottenheimer's time with the Jets, it's been said that not many of his players were very fond of his approach. He was let go by the Jets, only to be picked up by Jeff Fisher in 2012 to be the Rams OC.
We've yet to see a lot of offensive players turn their talent into more consistent results on the field. Brian Quick seems to have turned a corner in early results, but we're still waiting for Tavon Austin, the eighth overall pick in last year's draft, to produce at a level on par with his draft status. That's pretty inexcusable, but it mirrors what we're seeing on defense with the linebackers and defensive backs.
The Rams have 14 more games left in their season. There's time for Schottenheimer to salvage something from this offense. But if the present trends hold, will Fisher think about firing his OC while he has a chance to make a clean break?