Injury, Givens turn Rams' offense inside-out

October, 24, 2012
10/24/12
9:21
PM ET
Danny Amendola's injury and Chris Givens' continued emergence have transformed the St. Louis Rams' offense. The results are mixed for the Rams.

When Amendola was healthy and working the middle of the field, the Rams gained 61.2 percent of their passing yardage on receptions between the yard-line numbers. That percentage has fallen to 27.3 over the past three games, almost all of which the team has played without Amendola.

Amendola, sidelined by a rib/sternum injury suffered early in a Week 5 victory over Arizona, returned to practice on a limited basis Wednesday. He's probably a few weeks away from returning, however, and so the offense will continue to operate without one of the NFL's better slot receivers.

Amendola gained 262 of his 395 yards this season on receptions between the numbers, according to ESPN Stats & Information. More than one-fifth of his outside-the-numbers yardage came on a 44-yard reception against Arizona shortly before Amendola's injury.

Givens, a rookie fourth-round choice, has become a big-play threat on the perimeter. He has gained 263 of his 270 yards on passes caught outside the numbers. But the offense is lacking a consistent receiver to help sustain drives and make key receptions.

That was one of the points former NFL assistant coach Rick Venturi made in his offensive film review for the Rams' performance against Green Bay in Week 7.

101ESPN St. Louis has that audio. The chart illustrates some of what Venturi was talking about.

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