Rams not only lost a battle, but they lost the war of 2013

From the Arm Chair - St. Louis Rams - Week 7

10/24/13 in NFL   |   Scott   |   52897 respect

Blog Photo - Rams not only lost a battle, but they lost the war of 2013


The Rams are the youngest team in the NFL with not a ton of depth, especially in the skill positions.  When they suffer an injury to a starter, it usually means things are going to go from bad to worse.  Against the Carolina Panthers in week 7, the Rams were not only punked on the field by the Panthers actions but they also suffered the biggest blow any team can face... the loss of their field general, quarterback Sam Bradford.... to a season ending knee injury. 

The Good

Linebackers
- The Rams linebackers had one of their better games in Carolina.  Alec Ogletree and James Laurinaitis were able to contain the Panther rushing attack, holding D'angelo Williams to a season low in rushing for a game. They were also able to make tackles in space, something that we haven't seen a lot of in 2013.  With the loss of Bradford, the Rams defense is going to have to be more of a playmaking unit and the linebacking corp is going to have to lead the way.

Defensive line - Minus Chris Long, Robert Quinn and Michael Brockers once again dominated another teams offensive line.  Quinn had another sack while Brockers was hanging out a lot in the Panthers backfield blowing up countless Panther rushing plays.  Quinn and Brockers have quickly become quite the dynamic duo on the left side of the defensive line, something Rams fans can continue to look forward to for a few more years

Greg Zuerlein - The Rams 2nd year kicker continues to be the most consistent player on the field.  He is perfect in field goals this season and also leads the league in touch backs.  It looks like he is well on his way to being the Rams MVP for the 2nd straight season.

Zac Stacy - Stacy didn't rush for as many yards against the Panthers as he did against the Texans but he continued to make his case for being the Rams starting running back.  The Panthers front 7 is one of the best in the NFL and Stacy had no problem running through and by them.  With the Rams being forced to go to a backup quarterback, Zac Stacy becomes even more of a focal point in the offense.

The Bad

Sam Bradford -
Prior to his injury, Bradford was on pace to have the best year offensively in his NFL career, despite having wide receivers who lead the NFL in dropped passes.  With Bradford gone, Kellen Clemens and Austin Davis are now in charge, which means this team is going to struggle offensively.

Wide Receivers - The Rams continue to drop passes at an alarming rate.  With a backup quarterback now leading the team, Brian Quick and Tavon Austin have to take the next step and become more reliable.  The Rams are going to have to play perfect football the rest of the way if they are going to win any more games in 2013.

Secondary - Same thing, different week.  Janoris Jenkins was taken to school by Steve Smith and embarrassed on national TV.  The Rams corners were suppose to be a solid unit but so far in 2013, they are at the bottom of the league in almost every defensive category.

Penalties - Again, same thing, different week.  The Rams continue to shoot themselves in the foot with stupid penalties in crucial situations.  You can't continue to help teams or they are going to make you pay.

Chris Long -  While it was finally nice for the Rams to show some fire, watching one of your team leaders being kicked out for throwing a punch is not what you want to see.  The Panthers did a lot of provoking in this game and the Rams fell right into the trap by retaliating and self destructing.  The Rams don't have a lot of experience so they need guys like Long, Jo-Lon Dunbar and James Laurinaitis to set a good example. You have to play smart and control your emotions, despite how the other team is acting.  The Rams didn't do that and were made to look like a bunch of kids by the Panthers.

The loss of Bradford pretty much cripples any chances the Rams have of being competitive for the rest of the season.  Kurt Warner isn't walking through the door to lead this team so the reigns are handed over to Kellen Clemens and Austin Davis.  With the 2nd hardest schedule in the NFL the rest of the way, I don't see this team having much of a chance to win more then 1 game.  That means Coach Fisher and the rest of the staff have this year to audition players for next season.  It's time to coach this team up and get them to grow up so things like what we saw on Sunday, don't happen again.

As if things couldn't get worse for the Rams, this week they get to play on Monday night against the NFC's best team, the Seattle Seahawks.  This game would've been tough to win WITH Sam Bradford so without, the Rams are going to have a huge uphill climb. The Hawks are the best team in the NFC for a reason and I doubt Pete Carroll is going to take it easy against a team that is on life support, especially on a national stage like Monday Night Football.
 
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