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Friday, October 24, 2008
Around the NFC West: Rams, Pats diverged


Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch revisits the Rams' upset loss to New England in the Super Bowl following the 2001 season. Four current Rams played for that St. Louis team. They reflect on what might have been, noting how the Rams' and Patriots' paths diverged after that game.

Also from Thomas: An update on Steven Jackson's condition. Jackson missed practice again.

Bryan Burwell of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch looks at what injured players go through during the week. Jackson hopes to play Sunday despite a thigh injury.

Bill Coats of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says the Patriots are suffering from a Super Bowl defeat hangover.

Also from Coats: Rams defensive lineman James Hall wont' complain about switching positions. The move to defensive tackle means more playing time.

More from Coats: Former Rams backup Mark LeVoir could start at right tackle for the Patriots. That would be a good thing for Leonard Little, I'm thinking.

And this: Dick Vermeil is headed for the Rams' Ring of Honor.

VanRam of Turf Show Times takes a look at which Rams players might deserve Pro Bowl consideration. Linebacker Pisa Tinoisamoa comes to mind. The Rams have had trouble breaking through at the position in part because Seattle's Lofa Tatupu and Julian Peterson have locked down spots. This year could be different.

Art Thiel of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer says he thinks Mike Holmgren is headed for the 49ers in 2009. Perhaps that is why Holmgren keeps using the phrase "right now" when downplaying such thoughts.

Danny O'Neil of the Seattle Times looks at the Seahawks' window of opportunity and whether it's closing.

Clare Farnsworth of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer looks at the Seahawks' utter inability to "get home" with their blitzes. This has been a problem, off and on, for years.

Also from Farnsworth: Get ready for Seneca Wallace to start another game at quarterback for Seattle.

Frank Hughes of the Tacoma News Tribune weighs the Seahawks' inability to force turnovers.

Matthew Heuett of Seahawks Addicts cites a story noting Terrence Holt's recent tryout with the Seahawks. The team routinely brings in players on Tuesdays to update its contingency lists. Side note: Justin Hamilton, David Pittman and Tyson Smith also had tryouts.

Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic says the Cardinals face another East Coast test. They failed the last one miserably.

Also from Somers: Injuries at tight end are threatening to limit the Cardinals' options.

Darren Urban of azcardinals.com says Darnell Dockett isn't complaining as much about attracting double-team blocks. A conversation with the Bears' Tommie Harris opened his eyes.

Also from Urban: The Cardinals have improved in the red zone lately.

More from Urban: Arizona leads the NFL in scoring. Carolina ranks fifth in yards allowed per game. As the headline says, something has to give.