Monday, December 7, 2009
Around the NFC West: Rams no threat
By Mike Sando
Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch is having a hard time watching the Rams in their current state. Miklasz: "(Offensive coordinator Pat) Shurmur is running the murmur offense. Sunday he called for 28 Steven Jackson runs and a bunch of dink and dunk passes that wouldn't faze a high school defense. The Rams dressed five wide receivers for the first time all season. Why, was this a costume party? I have no idea why they put five wideouts in uniform. The Rams didn't spread the field, they didn't try to make the Bears pay for assigning everyone except the Chicago Police Department to stop Jackson. The Rams attempted only 16 throws to the wideouts, and the longest completion went for 21 yards. The Rams finished with 98 net yards passing." Fifth receiver Jordan Kent was active for special teams, and he dominated in that aspect. Kent downed three punts inside the Chicago 20, including two at the 2, and he tackled Bears return man Earl Bennett at the Chicago 3 on another play.
Bill Coats of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch offers a Rams report card. This one won't be taped to the fridge anytime soon.
Also from Coats: The Rams could not capitalize on the stellar field position Kent helped them secure repeatedly. Quarterback Kyle Boller: "It's extremely frustrating. You get field position like that, you've got to score touchdowns. There's no secret. In this league, you've got to score to win. Field goals aren't going to cut it."
More from Coats: Steven Jackson turned in another top-notch effort despite missing practice with a back injury. Guard Jacob Bell: "Guys like him, you get banged up, the team's not doing great, but you come out and you perform. He's one of the best. I'm just happy to be out there with him."
Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says punter Donnie Jones is putting together a Pro Bowl-caliber season for the Rams. Performing at a high level in cold weather is impressive. Also: "It was 34 degrees at game time, making Sunday only the eighth time in 246 regular-season and playoff games for the 'St. Louis' Rams that the temperature was below 40 degrees at kickoff. Unfortunately for the Rams, they are now 1-7 in such contests. Their only cold-weather triumph since the move to St. Louis in 1995 was a 26-20 victory over Cleveland on a Monday night in 2003."