The N.F.L. is aggravating. Each Sunday becomes another head scratcher. It is frustrating. Fans and media get mad and rant all week but players have to prepare for the next opponent. Players cannot get caught up in the range of emotions.
When asked whether his team was over last Sunday’s devastating loss at Arizona, coach Steve Spagnuolo said, “We’ve got a resilient group and I appreciate that, greatly. I always appreciate the effort and I saw it today. That’s all you can ask for as a head coach. You know the way we operate here. Everything that’s done is behind us and now we’re looking forward to the next challenge ahead, which is the Cleveland Browns.
Oh great, just another opportunity to validate yourself as a terrible football team. Spagnuolo has lost almost everyone in St. Louis. Presumably, the only man he has yet to lose is owner Stan Kroenke. In his third season as head coach, Spags is 9-31. Seven of those wins came in 2010. The Rams were supposed to be a playoff contender in the watered down NFC West. Instead, they are dead last and rank near the bottom in almost every team stat category.
St. Louis fans are tired of seeing bad football. The team can use the offseason lockout and injuries as excuses all they want. San Francisco (7-1) has an entirely new coaching staff and has battled injuries all year too (Frank Gore, Josh Morgan, Braylon Edwards, etc.)
Some teams figure out ways to win football games.
The conservativeness of Spagnuolo despite being 1-7 is absolutely ludicrous. Who openly admits to playing for field goals?
Has any team ever recorded two safeties defensively and not won the football game? Has any team had 383 yards of total offense without a touchdown?
The ways in which this team loses is mind-boggling.
The Rams were 3/14 (21%) on third down. But Arizona was 2/10!
Arizona had lost 6 games in a row and started backup QB John Skelton. He was awful. He completed just 20/35 passes but threw one easy TD pass to Larry Fitzgerald in the 4th quarter.
Former NFL defensive coach Rick Venturi blamed the touchdown on another Justin King mishap. King looked lost on the play and safety Craig Dahl stepped up to help in the flat. That left linebacker James Laurinaitison Fitzgerald. A linebacker covering a phenomenal wide out with no safety help? Huh?
Everyone in the organization deserves blame. This includes second year QB Sam Bradford. Bradford is winless in 2011. His high ankle sprain caused him to miss two weeks and in his return, his lack of practice was evident. Bradford missed open receivers everywhere, specifically Brandon Lloyd downfield twice. Bradford seems to have regressed in his second year which is concerning. He is not picking up the blitz at all. Last year, Bradford finished with a passer rating of 82.3 when blitzed, which was OK for a rookie. This year, Bradford has only completed 55% of his passes for just 3 touchdowns.
Bradford is not the scapegoat. The offensive line is horrendous. Steven Jackson was stopped three times with just 1 yard to go (twice on 3rd down; once on 4th). Inexcusable.
As the losses pile up, the misery continues. The laughingstock of the N.F.L. has planted itself in St. Louis for too long. Leave already.
- St. Louis Rams: 5 Predictions for the Second Half of 2011 (bleacherreport.com)
- Philadelphia Eagles: Is Steve Spagnuolo the Answer? (bleacherreport.com)