clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

St. Louis Rams: Halftime Adjustments Woeful Under Jeff Fisher Since 2012

New, comments

Since Jeff Fisher took over as head coach of the St. Louis Rams in 2012, the Rams have gone 4-22 in games where they trailed going into halftime...

Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

"The best laid schemes o' mice an’ men, Gang aft a-gley, [often go awry]" - Robert Burns

Throughout the course of the week, NFL coaching staff’s develop game plans in hopes of leading their team to victory on game day.  They know who they are.  They’d like to think they know the opponent.  And the game plan aims to utilize the strength[s] of their team, while capitalizing on the weakness[es] of the opponent.

But, as Robert Burns put so eloquently, even the most carefully prepared plans can go wrong.

And in those instances, coaches are provided with a very brief period during the game where they’re allowed to tweak things, in hopes of righting the ship:  "the halftime adjustment."  With only twelve minutes between the end of the first half, and kickoff of the second, that time - which includes walking to and fro, bathroom breaks, tending to injuries, etc - dwindles away quickly.  Coaches, especially those not in the scoreboard’s favor, must work quickly.

And they are adjustments.  Clearly there’s not enough time for the staff to devise a new game plan.  Variations of the original plan are made in an effort to fix what’s broke, or to implement a few new plays that may prove effective...or maybe discard some that aren’t rendering results.  They may reevaluate match-ups to create mismatches.  There’s a lot that can be done.  There’s just not much time to do it.

And before the team heads back out onto the field, the head coach steps up in front of the group and attempts to rally the troops with an inspirational speech.

Something like this...



And in the St. Louis Rams’ locker room it’s Jeff Fisher - not Al Pacino - who’s giving that speech.  Since 2012, when Fisher took over as head coach, the Rams have played a total of 53 games.  They’ve gone into the locker room at halftime trailing their opponent in 26 of those games [49%].

Let’s have a closer look at the games they’ve trailed in with 30 minutes gone in each game, dating back to 2012...

2012

Week
Opponent
Halftime Score
Result
Final Score
2
21-16
Win
31-28
3
10-3
Loss
23-6
6
10-6
Loss
17-14
7
10-6
Loss
30-20
8
28-7
Loss
45-7
11
13-7
Loss
27-13
12
17-14
Win
31-17
13
7-0
Win
16-13
14
6-0
Win
15-12
15
30-7
Loss
36-22
Trailed In 10 Games.  Lost 6  [60%]

2013

Week
Opponent
Halftime Score
Result
Final Score
2
24-3
Loss
31-24
3
17-0
Loss
31-7
4
49ers
14-3
Loss
35-11
7
17-5
Loss
30-15
8
7-3
Loss
14-9
13
at 49ers
13-3
Loss
23-13
14
at Cardinals
14-3
Loss
30-10
17
at Seahawks
13-0
Loss
27-9
Trailed In 8 .  Lost 8  [100%]

2014

Week
Opponent
Halftime Score
Result
Final Score
1
Vikings
13-0
Loss
34-6
5
20-7
Loss
34-28
8
10-7
Loss
34-7
15
Cardinals
6-3
Loss
12-6
16
20-13
Loss
37-27
Trailed In 5 .  Lost 5  [100%]

2015

Week
Opponent
Halftime Score
Result
Final Score
2
at Redskins
17-0
Loss
24-10
3
9-3
Loss
12-6
5
at Packers
14-10
Loss
24-10
Trailed In 3 .  Lost 3  [100%]
For a while there, in late 2012, Jeff Fisher and company were making the necessary adjustments [or making the kind of epic speeches that inspire greatness] at halftime, which is evident in them stringing together three straight wins [weeks 12-14], despite being down at the half.

But that’s the last time the Rams were able to come out of the locker room at halftime and effectively turn things around:  December 9th, 2012 -- 1,039 days ago -- 37 regular season games ago.  The Rams have lost the last 17 games in which they’ve trailed at halftime.

There are obviously varying degrees to this, too.  It would be silly to think the Rams at home [in London] could simply come out of the locker room down 28-7 and throttle the Patriots.  It would be fair to assume though that the appropriate halftime adjustments would permit them to at least put up some points, or slow down the Patriots.  Neither of those occurred.

But over half of these games [14 of the 26] were one-score games with 30 minutes remaining.  They were able to win four of those [28%].

In summation, halftime adjustments - as they pertain to Jeff Fisher’s Rams - have yielded a 4-22 record when trailing at half.  This started with a quote, and it’s only right that it end with one.

"Yikes." -  Zac Stacy