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Reviewing the Jeff Fisher Era: Are the Rams Better Off After 5 Years of Fisher?

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It’s time to take a comprehensive look at what Jeff Fisher inherited and what he’s leaving for new Head Coach Sean McVay.

NFL: Los Angeles Rams at San Francisco 49ers Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

In the years leading up to Jeff Fisher becoming the then St. Louis Rams head coach, the Rams were an unmitigated disaster. From 2007 through 2011, the Rams went 15-65 and were left with a roster mostly devoid of talent.

Fisher had the opportunity of a lifetime during his tenure with the Rams. he had what seemed like full control of roster decisions, an enormous amount of draft assets to work with, and a promising young QB in Sam Bradford.

These were the results:

Offense/Defense 2011 v 2016

Offense Defense
Offense Defense
2011 2016 2011 2016
YPG 286.6 (32nd) 262.7 (32nd) YPG 358.4 (22nd) 337.0 (9th)
PPG 12.1 (32nd) 14.0 (32nd) PPG 25.4 (26th) 24.6 (23rd)

I’ll be blunt.... that’s pathetic. The Rams were stagnant in nearly every category save for defensive yards per game allowed. With 5 years and resources to spare, Jeff Fisher squandered this incredible opportunity.

While neither is the final full 53-man roster, I took the time to compile the bulk of the personnel from this season and the roster that Fisher inherited.

2011 Rams vs 2016 Rams

2011 2016
2011 2016
QB Sam Bradford Jared Goff
Kellen Clemens Case Keenum
A.J. Feely Sean Mannion
RB Steven Jackson Todd Gurley
Cadillac Williams Malcolm Brown
Jerious Norwood Chase Reynolds
Brit Miller (FB) Benny Cunningham
Cory Harkey (FB)
WR/TE Brandon Lloyd Kenny Britt
Brandon Gibson Tavon Austin
Mark Clayton Brian Quick
Danny Amendola Mike Thomas
Danario Alexander Bradley Marquez
Austin Pettis Nelson Spruce
Lance Kendricks Lance Kendricks
Michael Hoomanawanui Tyler Higbee
Billy Bajema Temarrick Hemmingway
OL Rodger Saffold Greg Robinson
Jacob Bell Rodger Saffold
Tony Wragge Tim Barnes
Havey Dahl Jamon Brown
Jason Brown Rob Havenstein
Jason Smith Cody Wichmann
Adam Goldberg Andrew Donnal
DL James Hall Robert Quinn
Chris Long Michael Brockers
Fred Robbins Aaron Donald
Justin Bannan William Hayes
Robert Quinn Dominique Easley
C.J. Ah You Eugene Sims
Jermelle Cudjo Ethan Westbrooks
LB James Laurinaitis Mark Barron
Chris Chamberlain Alec Ogletree
Brady Popinga Bryce Hager
Ben Leber Cory Littleton
Josh Hull Josh Forrest
DB Ronald Bartell E.J. Gaines
Justin King Troy Hill
Josh Gordy Trumaine Johnson
Bradley Fletcher Michael Jordan
Al Harris Lamarcus Joyner
Jerome Murphy Blake Countess
Craig Dahl Maurice Alexander
Darian Stewart Cody Davis
Quintin Mikell T.J. McDonald
P Donnie Jones Johnny Hekker
K Josh Brown Greg Zuerlein
LS Jacob McQuaide Jacob McQuaide

The Rams made these changes with an unprecedented amount of draft capital that they famously received for the Washington Redskins in exchange for the right to draft Robert Griffin III. They also had the luxury of inheriting a #1 overall pick (Sam Bradford) and drafting their own in 2016 (Jared Goff).

Unfortunately, it didn’t lead to more wins and the Rams are left languishing in the NFL’s cellar again after finishing 4-12 in 2016. They never won more than 7 games in Fisher’s tenure.

We will delve in further over the course of the next few weeks. Myself and the rest of the TST staff will be taking a look at each position group individually before taking a look at the Offense, Defense, and roster as a whole.