Monday, August 27, 2007

Losing to the Raiders - Ouch!

I wasn't able to see the game, due to a 5 day camping trip. And maybe it was better to be out in the mountains listening to the sound of water trickling by and fighting off mosquitos than to watch yet another lack luster offensive performance and a penalty riddled defense.

The Rams racked up 157 yards in penalties, 10 big ones, 7 of which were attributed to the "new" defense, from what I hear most of the 7 penalties helped the Raiders score.

And this was our "dress rehearsal"? Yikes! I know it's just the preseason but with a "dress rehearsal" like that, it's no doubt got some of us a little worried.

But perhaps I'm being a tad too harsh....since the "dress rehearsal" still did not include some key figures....Torry Holt and Steven Jackson. Perhaps had they been in the game, there may have been a little more offensive muscle to show case.

The penalties and turnovers caused by the defense, does lead you to think that Haslett is beginning to create a far more aggressive defense than what we've been use to. The problem with penalties though, needs to be nipped in the bud and gotten under control by official kickoff time and that's just 2 weeks away.

Let's get this offense gelling and the defense settled down by opening day and then the future might not look so shaky.


Sunday, August 19, 2007

They Can Whine About Offense

But it's only pre-season and the critics need to realize this before passing judgement on the Rams, especially the Rams offense.

Last year was no different than this year, where the Rams offense was extremely ineffective. Pre-season simply doesn't mean anything and we've all got to realize that. It's the only way that the players who are vying for a spot on the roster have a way to showcase what they can offer to the team.

One player that truly is proving that he deserves to be in the NFL is Brian Leonard. In just week he's gone from a rookie backup with stars in his eyes to a player that quickly learned to adjust to the fast pace of the NFL. In one week he polished his skills to point where there should be no doubt in anyone's minds that HE belongs and deserves to be the backup to Steven Jackson.

He's got a great bruising style and is not afraid to hit or get hit, learning quickly from Jackson that he simply has to learn how to do it right so he doesn't kill himself out there. He's proved just in two weeks that he has great hands and can be a threat in the receiving game. He's beginning to show that for a rookie he's got pretty good field vision as well.

Brian Leonard is the real deal and we're lucky to have, or should I say, Jackson should feel lucky to have such a quality backup and a rookie to boot.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Fitzpatrick in Trouble?

Call pre-season jitters, call it being rusty, but something didn't look right with Fitzpatrick in his first pre-season game. Maybe I'm jumping the gun here and just getting to excited for the season to start, but Ryan Fitpatrick just didn't seem to be on the same page as the rest of the offense during the Vikings game.

Sure he's just the third string QB, but eventually you'd hope that your third stringer was being groomed for the future to at least move up to back up. And right now, I'd be afraid to have him as back up if I were to base anything on his performance against the Vikings.

Had it not been for his horrendous throw that gave the Vikings a interception for an 82 yard touchdown return the Rams defense would have held the Vikings to just 3 points for the entire game.

It was good though to see that Linehan wasn't going to give up on him and remove him directly after that crucial INT. He put him right back out on the next drive. This is a good thing. But good thing or not, Fitz just couldn't get the job done. He just didn't seem polished enough under Linehan yet.

Could his third position as QB be threatened by the youngster Berlin? Despite a few rough patches his first couple of touches, Berlin seemed to take to the field like fish to water.

It'll be interesting to see how this develops over the next few weeks.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Many Happy Returns

Critics can say all they want about Dante Hall losing a step due to his ripe old age of 28, but they say the same thing about Isaac Bruce year in and year out about this has got to be his last year, he's bound to retire, he's lost a step here and there, etc. Yet every year Bruce comes back, there's no signs of lost steps or old age setting in. So why should it be any different for Dante Hall.

What a lot of people need to understand is that perhaps it's not the fact that Dante has lost a step or two with so called old age (geez how can they say 28 is old), but it's more that each team was terrified of him and would do their best to keep the ball away from him.

That being the case, this does not mean he's losing it. What we have here on our team now is a threat on the field, someone that we all know if he gets the ball he's going to do his damnedest to make sure that he does something with any opportunity that he might see on that field. We now have a player that actually would prefer to play special teams than wide receiver. He knows his niche and he loves his niche. How refreshing is that? How exciting is that?

Maybe Dante won't get us a huge run back every time that he touches the ball, but he will give us the threat and put fear into the opposing teams hearts. And we know that if it's there, just one little hole of sunlight, he'll be gone and there won't be anything anyone can do to stop him.

And that's what is going to make our hearts skip a beat. Just the sheer thought of the possibilities that Hall gives our team each time he stands back there waiting for a punt or kick off.