The Rams were full of the giving spirit on the last Sunday before Christmas. They gave the Chiefs hope by not converting either of their opening scoring drives for touchdowns, then gave them life by going into a full-scale offensive meltdown throughout an abysmal second quarter. As the defense broke down, the Rams gave away the lead, and eventually just wrapped up the win with a nice gold bow and simply gave the game away.
If only, if only. If is a big little word guys, main point is that we are a better football team than that. #rams
Yes, but to borrow a phrase, "if Ifs and Buts were patience and guts, the Rams could have given us all a merry Christmas."
Todd Haley has to hope he gets Coach Spagnuolo as his "secret Santa" every year.
Despite getting an early present from the San Diego Chargers, who mauled the 49ers 34-7 and has coach Singletary contemplating yet another quarterback change, our boys in blue could not take advantage. A win here -- and a win was certainly there to be had, had we played our "A" game -- would have given the Rams full control of their destiny. Now, we badly need some holiday charity from the Seahawks, and to win our last two games.
Rams observers have to question how prepared this team was to win this game -- not only in game-planning, which was atrocious, but in execution. Everything appeared to be off this week. The offensive tangle of poor effort, poor positioning, poor coaching, and poor coordination presents a gordian knot, making it nearly impossible to tease out just one thread.
@RamsHerd At the risk of being totally honest, this looks like a game from last year.
When the tide came in for KC, it came in a flood.
The afternoon started out with great confidence, as the Rams posted a quick 6-0 lead with strong play in all three phases. The pre-game sit-or-play drama surrounding Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel seemed irrelevant, as Sam Bradford completed 6 of his first 7 passes, Steven Jackson was rolling, and Josh Brown was connecting on field goal tries.
It won't matter how Cassel looks if the defense plays like this all day. #chiefs
After that, though? The bottom fell out of the Rams' offensive game plan. The next three offensive drives totaled 1 yard as Sam Bradford ran plays out of the Keith Null playbook: targeting nothing more than five yards down field, spending more time dancing or dodging yellow flags than in diagnosing defenses and running through progressions. It's difficult to credit the Chiefs for doing anything particularly special on defense, though it should be mentioned that their young secondary led by Brandon Flowers, Brandon Carr, and Eric Berry, did a nice job in coverage. However, with the Rams Excel spreadsheet filter set to "dump off," It was a pretty simple task to simply keep everything in front and make tackles for minimal gains.
After a dismal first quarter, Matt Cassel began to make plays, helped by a wall of protection, an unusually timid defensive game plan, and the blind eye of Referee Ron Winter's crew. The ugly blotches of red among the blue-shirted Rams fans at the Dome came to life as the Chiefs rolled up two long touchdown drives, taking a 14-6 lead.
Meanwhile, Thomas Jones did much of the damage on the ground, as his power running ground away at the Rams' defense. In a classic one-two punch, Jones softened gaps for fleet-footed counterpart Jamaal Charles, who broke the Rams' backs with an 80-yard run in the fourth quarter, just two plays after the Rams finally scored to get within a touchdown.
Yes, the score may not look it, but the Rams were one possession away with under 5 minutes to play in this game. And yet, as a final score, 27-13 doesn't feel like a large enough gap. This was a game the Rams blew themselves out of, raising the hackles of any fan who dared consider us playoff-worthy.
One team will have to win the NFC West. NFL rules dictate it.
By that logic alone, the Rams are still in the running, as all four NFC West teams lost this weekend by a combined score of 114-50. I think we would all appreciate it, though, if the Rams actually played up to the potential they showed just as recently as two weeks ago. If they could, we might be ready to actually celebrate a division title, instead of possibly having to apologize for one.