Tag: Denver Broncos

St. Louis Rams Are Now The Upset Men

The St. Louis Rams just did it again, and they’ve done it so many times this season it can’t be a coincidence.   The “it” is pulling off unlikely upset after unlikely upset against the NFL’s best teams (or so we thought).

Are the Rams actually much better than people think?  That’s just it.  No they’re not.  They were picked to finish last in the NFC West and they are last and will finish that way.  They were the weakest team and they lost their starting QB and no one expected them to make any kind of noise in the playoff race.  And they haven’t.  They just keep beating really good teams.

It started in week 7 against Seattle.  The Rams were 1-4 coming into that game and their best achievement to that point had been blowing big leads against both Dallas and Philadelphia.  Hey, at least they had the leads to blow.  But certainly no one was looking for them to beat Seattle, and when the Seahawks scored with 10 minutes to go in the game to narrow the St. Louis lead to just 2, everyone in the building knew what was going to happen next.  Except someone forgot to tell the Rams.  They pulled off a fake punt (remember this?) deep in their own territory and eventually stretched the lead back to 9 points.  Gutsy call by Jeff Fisher.  Gutsy play all game by the Rams.  That was it, they won their Super Bowl for the year, something which seemed confirmed the following week when they got their asses handed to them by the Chiefs.

The brains behind the whole thing

But here they came again.  The following week they again took on an NFC West behemoth in the 49ers and beat them 13-10 in a game where the Rams defense out-49erd the 49ers, recording 8 sacks.  OK, so maybe this was an NFC West rivalry thing.   No, the Rams got blown again the following week by Arizona.

And now this week.  The Rams didn’t run some surprising last minute trick play and they didn’t get 8 sacks.  But their defense did hold the Broncos to 7 points, thanks in part to two interceptions of Peyton Manning (the Rams did sack him twice also).   The Rams offense was also quite efficient, as QB Shaun Hill, RB Tre Mason and WR Kenny Britt all had good games.

What you didn’t predict

It seems like every other week the Rams are doing this and in so doing, they are pulling off that rarest of feats – establishing their credentials for next season while still positioning themselves to get a pretty good draft pick.

Next week the Rams get the Chargers.  If I were the Chargers, I’d start watching game films right now.

 

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The Magic of the Peyton and Brady Rivalry

This week saw the 12th time Peyton Manning and Tom Brady have squared off in the regular season, and while no one can be sure exactly how many more meetings we may get a chance to see, the answer is certainly fewer than the ones that have already happened.  The next such showdown will probably come in this year’s playoffs (it would be the 5th playoff meeting, the previous four having been evenly split).  Has there ever been another rivalry quite like this one?

The only one that comes immediately to mind is Magic vs. Bird, and that one occurred within the overall confines of the Lakers v. Celtics rivalry, which continued on after both Magic and Bird had retired.  Simply stated, Manning vs. Brady is the greatest mano a mano rivalry in the history of team sports and on a par with the great individual rivalries of the past like Ali vs. Frazier, McEnroe v. Borg or Navratilova vs. Evert.
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The Better Teams That Lost: NFL Random Thoughts

You can’t win like this.  The Philadelphia Eagles, after securing the go ahead score, promptly gave up a 75 yard touchdown pass with less than two minutes to go against Arizona.  Eagles lose.

The Green Bay Packers allowed Drew Brees to complete 84% of his passes for 300+ yards and 3 touchdowns (and 41 points).  Packers lose.

The Dallas Cowboys let a third string quarterback on a 2-5 team go 25 for 30 against them.  Cowboys lose.

And the Indianapolis Colts gave up a record type of day to Ben Roethlisberger.  500 yards, 6 touchdowns, a passer rating of 150+.  Colts, needless to say, lose.

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5 Big Winners of the NFL Offseason

During the offseason, we see major changes happening to teams around the NFL. Some teams gain value while some others exit the offseason as losers.

The 2014 offseason has been one that included many significant changes.

Several teams will now enter the upcoming season standing good odds to do better than they did last year.

Let’s examine the 5 biggest winners of the offseason. (more…)

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