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On Further Review: Hall Makes the Play

Discussion in 'RAMS - NFL TALK' started by bluecoconuts, Nov 15, 2011.

  1. bluecoconuts

    bluecoconuts Well-Known Member

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    On Further Review: Hall Makes the Play
    By Nick Wagoner/Senior Writer

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    On a play that is surely burning through plenty of rewind buttons today in Cleveland, Rams coach Steve Spagnuolo and special teams coordinator Tom McMahon’s review of the missed field goal that won them the game Sunday revealed something nobody recognized when it happened.

    While yes, long snapper Ryan Pontbriand’s attempt hit left guard Alex Mack’s leg and caused the ball to trickle to holder Brad Maynard thus throwing off the timing of Phil Dawson’s 22-yard attempt, the closer inspection showed that the Rams did indeed have something to do with the errant boot.

    “James Hall at the end actually blocked that kick,” Spagnuolo revealed Monday afternoon. “I’m not so sure that even with all of the mishandling they had it might have still gone through had really Gary Gibson and James Hall did a heck of a job. They made an adjustment during the game on their field goal block unit. I thought James did a good job there.”

    According to the review done by Spagnuolo and McMahon, Gibson and Hall noticed an apparent weakness in the front of the Browns field goal unit. They huddled with McMahon, made the adjustment and went for it with the game on the line and the Rams clinging to a 13-12 lead.

    When Spagnuolo and McMahon sat down to watch the film of the play, they noticed Hall getting push up the middle and getting a piece of the ball as it went up.

    “I didn’t know that until this morning when Tom McMahon and I were watching the tape but it hits his forearm,” Spagnuolo said. “He does a great job getting through there. Again, their timing obviously was off on the kick so that helped. But I’m not so sure from the naked eye going back and forth it might knuckle ball through there (if Hall doesn’t hit it).”

    Spagnuolo said he had not yet seen Hall to ask him if he got a piece of it but regardless, Dawson’s kick ended up sailing far wide to the left, giving the Rams the victory.

    As is custom on plays like that, the Rams will likely send the review of the play to the league so Hall can be properly credited if he did indeed block the kick.

    After the game, some grumbling came from the Browns locker room insinuating that Hall – or some other Rams – were offsides on the kick which helped lead to the miss.

    Of course, Spagnuolo didn’t see it that way. In fact, if anything, he saw a Cleveland player flinch.

    “I don’t think he was (offsides),” Spagnuolo said. “My opinion I don’t think he was. But if he was, it’s because there was movement on the other side, I thought.”

    No matter how any further film reviews are seen, the only thing that truly matters is that the bizarre play went the Rams way for once and sealed their second win of the season.

    “It was an interesting play, obviously,” Spagnuolo said. “But Tom McMahon, Gibby, James came over, made an adjustment and did something a little bit different than we had been doing during the game and I thought it helped us.”

    WRAGGE FARES WELL: As expected, Tony Wragge replaced Jason Brown at center in the starting lineup of Sunday’s game.

    The move ended Brown’s streak of consecutive starts at 84. By most accounts, Wragge performed well in his first start at center for the Rams.

    “I thought he did a great job,” quarterback Sam Bradford said. “He came in and played confident. I’m very proud of the way he came in and stepped up today.”

    On film review, Spagnuolo agreed with that assessment. Though he stopped short of anointing Wragge the starter again this week, he did indicate it was a possibility.

    “Pretty good, yeah, solid,” Spagnuolo said. “We’ll see where we are when we get to Wednesday and the game plan and all that but I thought he was solid.”

    BRADFORD OK: Speaking of Bradford, he had a little bit of a scare when he was left on the ground following a scramble for a first down in the second half.

    Bradford left the game for one play but returned quickly.

    “I got hit in the thigh, just a little bit of a dead leg,” Bradford said. “But after I got up and walked it off, I was fine.”

    Bradford had no remaining ill effects from the ankle injury on Monday morning. The Rams did not put him back in the walking boot and he had no issues aside from general soreness.


    INJURY REPORT: As expected, Spagnuolo announced the season ending torn Anterior Cruciate Ligament injuries to cornerback Al Harris and tight end Mike Hoomanawanui.

    Harris and Hoomanawanui will be placed on injured reserve and miss the rest of the season.

    Tackle Rodger Saffold and cornerback Justin King suffered head injuries but were symptom free Monday and Spagnuolo believes they could be ready to go this week.

    Running back Cadillac Williams (calf) and safety Darian Stewart (neck) will be monitored day to day this week. Stewart felt better Monday as well.

    Receiver Brandon Gibson (groin) also came out of the game sore but he is expected to be day to day. Fellow wideout Danario Alexander is still fighting a hamstring injury and will be limited this week.

    As for right tackle Jason Smith, he remains slowed by a concussion.

    “They exerted him a little today but the symptoms came back so that’s where we’ve got to be careful,” Spagnuolo said.

    Meanwhile, there are a few Rams who Spagnuolo expressed hope would be able to return this week.

    Running back Jerious Norwood (hamstring) and linebackers Josh Hull(hamstring) and Bryan Kehl (ankle) are expected to be day to day but could get more action as the week goes on.

    Tight end Lance Kendricks is in a similar situation with his foot ailment. He’ll be limited Wednesday but there’s a possibility he’ll be ready for the weekend.
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