Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Whither too my Rams...?

Just a word about the Rams. I've been tracking the few and meager words said about my Rams in the media during the past few weeks of deep off-season. Only one summary of these words is possible and plausible.

Either I have been incredibly effective in forming the media's opinion about the upcoming season, or the experts have looked at the exact same phenomena I have and reached very similar conclusions. I seriously doubt I have formed anyone's opinion on the subject, so we must be looking at the same phenomena, and we must have reached the same conclusions.

Gone are the rubbish statistics that say the Rams had the #12 ranked pass protecting line in the NFL last season. There is a stark, cold realization that this line has surrendered 40+ sacks each year every year for 10 straight years. This means we have a bad line. Gone is the metaphysical belief that Dr. James R. Edwards can magically declare that Sam Bradford has no more chance injury than any other player. Gone are assertions that the Rams have a security blanket named Steven Jackson for Sam Bradford's rookie campaign.

Now there seems to be a stark realization that Sam Bradford is going to be thrown head first into the shark tank... if not immediately than soon. Now there are questions about the young and rejiggered offensive line. Now there are questions about Steven Jacksons health. Now there are questions about Sam Bradford's durability.

Although no one has mentioned Billy Devaney by name, there are questions about the basic course heading and strategy of the management in St. Louis.

What is my response to this? You are just a little bit fucking late, Jack! Where the hell were you in the run up to the draft when the Rams were casting this situation? Why did you not speak up in the prelude to the draft when it might have mattered? Why did you not saying this on Tuesday of draft week when we might have avoided taking this catastrophic risk? Why didn't you challenge the course heading and strategy before the draft?

Although I am hopeful that all will work out for Sam Bradford, and I will be the first to cheer his success (if there is any) the cold logic in me dictates that the percentages are very low. The risk is extremely high.

Looking at it with cold logic, the Rams just replaced one fragile passer with another. You got rid of some experience along with a broken down body. You got some youth along with a less broken down body. Yes, you can argue that Sam Bradford has a much greater potential ceiling than Bulger. However, Bulger had two Pro Bowl elections and Sam Bradford has yet to prove himself. Right now all that talk leads to a stalemate. What we can say objectively is that the Rams traded an older frail passer for a younger frail passer. That is all. Only this and nothing more.

We are coming out of the Marc Bulger era. This era was a loosing chapter in Ram history. We lost a lot of games. There were many reasons why we lost, but one of the key reasons was this: Our so-called franchise quarterback was always injured. He was always injured because (a) God did not give him a body that could endure the punishment of Pro Football and (b) the Rams furnished him with an offensive line that stank up the Edward Jones Dome.

The Bulger era came to a close in 2009, and we all knew it was so. There was little debate among Ram fans about this subject as the calendar flipped over to 2010. We knew the Bulger era was over.

As we walked on the cusp of that rare moment when the Rams were prepared to change quarterback administrations, we all debated what sort of quarterback solution we should look for. There was literally no agreement. There was very strong disagreement. Ram fans wanted to go in 5 or 6 different directions.

It seemed to me that, after suffering through an era with a fragile QB who was always injured, the paramount quality we would & should be selecting for would be rugged reliability and durability. That means Tim Tebow, right? Nope. Devaney selected Sam Bradford.

Smart! Damn smart!

Are you ready for the punchline: We are going to put him behind a shaky and inconsistent offensive line that has lots of injury problems... and we are rejiggering that line right now also!

Funny how life works out some times. Maybe we just have bad management. When you look at the number of solid pros we have thrown out the door, and when you look at how many busted draft picks we have submitted to the Commish, maybe it is time we recognize that the Rams are a poorly managed team, after all.