The St. Louis Rams were officially eliminated from any possibility of the playoffs in Week 15, but not before they pulled off an impressive win on national TV on Thursday Night Football downing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31-23. With 11 teams holding less than the Rams' six wins, was the TNF showoff enough to push them back into the high teens of the major power rankings?
|Average ranking (# of rankings)||19.22 (9)|
|Average change from last week||+5.00|
|Highest ranking (source)||14th (FOX Sports)|
|Lowest ranking (source)||22nd (multiple sources)|
|Biggest positive change (source)||+10 (CBS - Kirwan)|
|Biggest negative change (source)||+3 (multiple sources)|
Tavon Austin is quietly putting together a big season. He has 10 touchdowns (including returns) and he has nearly as many rushing yards (390) as receiving yards (427).
Nice win last Thursday -- and nice wiggle, Tavon Austin. Received approximately a billion tweets in response to this tweet: The Rams play well just long enough for people to say "look out for them next year." In fact, if you check the deleted scenes in "Back to the Future II," you'll see a newspaper headline that says " Rams finish 7-9." OK, maybe not, but who wants to guess right now that they finish 7-9 next year? Feel for the fans of St. Louis, who deserve better. Perhaps this is an old-school perspective, but I felt the Cardinals should've never left. (I'll have more on this, in this very piece, next week.)
It looks like Jeff Fisher is coming back. The question is whether that's a good thing.
A season that got away from them seems to at least be winding down on a high note for the Rams. They are running the ball and playing aggressive defense again. Wherever they end up playing next season, if they can figure out the QB situation, they may be closer than most people think.
It's incredible Aaron Donald lasted until the 13th pick of last year's draft. Interesting question: Odell Beckham went 12th ... would he still go ahead of Donald if there was a re-draft today? I'm not sure. Good debate.
With two more wins, Bruce Arians will be right again.
Case Keenum looks more comfortable under offensive coordinator Rob Boras than Nick Foles looked all season under the departed Frank Cignetti. The Rams are finally getting Tavon Austin more involved again, and the offense has found a spark.
Cornerback Trumaine Johnson has six interceptions, second-most among all CBs.