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This is a second tier team

Discussion in 'RAMS - NFL TALK' started by Merlin, Oct 9, 2017.

  1. Merlin

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    Early on as this offense has improved so rapidly I had very high hopes that we'd see that combination of both sides of the ball coming together and creation of a top tier playoff contender. But the combination of the Redskins and Shithawks games have given us a realistic look at what this team is:

    They're young and not ready to be an elite team yet. But they are close and squarely in that second tier where the playoffs are a strong possibility.

    And that's ok by me. Now, I know some will be irritated by my saying that, because there is that chance they grow into an elite team this year as they have superb coaching and coordination/gameplanning and some very good talent. But for myself those expectations are now gone and replaced by a more mild expectation. And along those lines here's what I'm looking for the rest of the way...

    1. Weeding out of non-fits and guys who are not going to be core players any longer. I have accepted that this regime isn't going to do everything I want in the speed I want it, but that doesn't change my opinion on what needs to happen. Mo was thankfully just jettisoned, and it's nice to see the Rams make the hard call on him not fitting. Now they need to continue that with guys like Tavon and Quinn, and have an offseason ahead with even more difficult decisions wrt impending free agents as well as guys like Donald (he is gonna be a problem this offseason and into next year's camp if not signed). As this happens it's going to take more failure on the field to cement some of the decisions, which IMO will hold the team back a bit as they transition through it.

    2. Growth and establishment of the young core pieces. It was really nice to see Johnson get in there and show some range, and a ballhawking ability that might lead to his consideration at FS depending on how discussions go with Joyner. But this team is going to depend more and more on the young pieces they added and the young pieces who fit that the regime inherited, the guys like Goff, Gurley, Woods, Kupp, etc. This includes the growth of a QB who is basically still a rook in terms of snaps and camp focus received, who is going to need seasoning and time to grow at the league's toughest position.

    3. Growth of our young Head Coach. McVay still has a lot to learn on the sidelines. He's done amazingly well for a guy of 31 years in a league that eats head coaches, but he's been outcoached twice in five games two of which were at home. He's a quick study, sure, but he needs time to improve and grow into that rare head coach most of us think he's going to become. Hopefully he'll get this team into the playoffs and will get that extra seasoning that comes with it.

    Anyway I'm sure some will think I'm throwing in the towel. Some will probably also think that I'm finally coming off the Kool-Aid. Not too concerned with all that. I'm just at the point now where I am accepting this team is going to need more time, and it's a far cry from previous seasons where I'm understanding the team has zero shot at doing anything. Rams remain a very dangerous darkhorse for the playoffs, but at this point I see a team that is going to need more time than maybe I thought/hoped before.
     
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  2. TexasRam

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    I said before the season we will win 10 games if we can stay healthy.

    10 wins is not Elite. That is scraping by to find a playoff seed.

    This team is exactly where I thought they were. Most people if you asked them figured the offensive explosions would cool vs the better defenses we were going to play starting with Seattle.

    The great news is we score 30 vs Seattle if not for a bad call of a fumble, two dropped TD’s and a missed easy fg.

    The team is better than a 2nd tier team as soon as they iron out some things.

    It’s better to play your best ball at the end of the season then early.
     
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  3. LACHAMP46

    A snazzy title
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    lets see what happens in 4 weeks....these young punks might surprise....

    Defense will get better...Cut a few starters and watch the results.

    Offense just needs to fix red zone %%%%.....and I know a guy with the initials of S. W. that can help.

    Don't be so quick to throw away Tavon....and Quinn for that matter. Lets see if they can get their minds to follow their immense talent....Esp. Tavon....can we get him involved in the passing game? Can he practice catching punts?
     
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  4. bomebadeeda

    Whitworth is my hero.....
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    I had one of those games a few years back...... it ended up me not really liking football for some time. I ended up building a "cyber-bar". It was fun and interesting......but it wasn't football. But I want you to remember this. Those kids grew up a bit yesterday. Having all of the calls go against us and p[laying down right crappy, we still had a chance......and that little turdhead that drove us mad....put the team on his back and almost won the game. And now for the next week...he's going to stew, he's going to pace....he's going to dwell on that hurt. And he'll never forget it. And while I won't try to spin it into something else....we both know how a QB from Cal has turned out and his legend of winning games late. I think another one just got a great lesson. I look forward to where this ride is heading. I hope you are there with me....because I can see a day where the Squawks hate us because we dominate the series going forward. Go Rams.....and thanks for the way you support this team.
     
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  5. Karate61

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    Hmmmm....I'm one of those really not in agreement here.

    First of all, how many tiers do you have? If you have like 10 tiers and rate the Rams as 2nd tier, I will go with that.

    Assuming 3 tiers, I put Rams as 1st tier along with a number of other teams. I mean whose tops in the league? Chiefs? Eagles? Panthers? There are around 10 other teams in the 3-2 win loss record range. Is there any one team that's unbeatable? Chiefs? I don't think so.

    I think Rams can compete with any team in the league, with a good chance of winning. Playoffs and a shot at the super bowl are not out of the question...my opinion.

    You cite Redskins and Seahawks? We should have killed the Seahags yesterday except for 3-5 totally out of the ordinary unbelievably bad luck plays. We'll get another shot at them. And, Redskins were the 1st tough test. We'd have a good shot to be them, maybe a chance this year again in the playoffs.

    Writing off the Rams, I feel, is a big mistake and way to early. Check out the upcoming schedule this season:

    After the Jaguar game next week, Rams face some pretty weak teams. There's a stretch we could win 6 in a row; 7 if we handle the Jags. I'll project a record of 9-3 by week 12. How 'bout them apples!

    How you gonna feel about a 9-3 Rams team charging to close out the season high in the playoff seeding? This team seems to have a great shot at doing a lot. So, be happy and it will happen for the Rams this season. It's happening right now. Next up...let's kill them pussycats Sunday. The jags have been losing every other game, they lost yesterday, so Rams will win!

    Writing this message out I now feel like all is great in the world! LOL
     
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  6. Merlin

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    Didn't realize I was writing them off. Tried to go through some effort to ensure people didn't take the post that way.

    Top tier teams are the ones I consider true Super Bowl contenders. There aren't too many teams right now that have looked like that, but week 6 is where that starts to clear up every season and come December we will know who they are as the playoff push starts. The two best teams the Rams have faced both beat them in their house, so for right now they just don't deserve that level of hype and consideration.

    Our offense right now wilts in the face of physical defense. The type of defense they'll see in the playoffs and the type of defense they'll see in Jax. They need to improve here over the schedule and we'll see if they can grow into the offense that can handle that. Not sure that will happen but we'll see.

    Good thing is our defense is improving game to game. People don't realize how dangerous Seattle is on that scramble drill, or what a test that is for a secondary, and they did very well yesterday. So going forward I like this team as a playoff team that will probably be eliminated rather quickly.

    Again, though, time will tell. If that run game keeps improving and Goff keeps growing it's still possible for them to be that team, just taking the pressure off all that for myself, for now.
     
  7. jrry32

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    I don't really care what we are now. I care what we are in 12 weeks.
     
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  8. Karate61

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    Merlin, you wrote (and I'm quoting here), "I am accepting this team is going to need more time". That sounded to me like you've written them off (for this season). You're drifting off to the dark side...Don't do it!

    What tier is the Seahawks, or the Redskins?

    The Rams offense does not wilt! Rams were sticking it to the Hags #10 defense yesterday. We had the stupid fumble touch back at the 1/2 yard line; GZ missed a gimmie field goal, etc. Rams offense was killing it. Wilt...hell to the no!

    Put the pressure back on yourself! Don't lie back scared to root for your team. This Rams team, this season will not let you down. The glass is 3/4 full, not totally empty! Do not give the past the power to define your future!

    FEAR: Face Everything And Rise!


    This season has been, and will continue to be an awesome ride!
     
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  9. -X-

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    I'm the Dude, man.
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    I don't think he's been out-coached in the sense you're describing it. I mean, using that rationale, Bill Bellyfat has been out-coached twice now too. Sometimes players just don't execute. Sometimes the QB has an off day. Sometimes the other team just has a better game. Personally, I went into this season with the understanding that everything is new. New HC, new DC, new defensive scheme, new offensive scheme, lotta player turnover, etc. I didn't figure they would man-handle a lot of good teams who have been established and are experienced playoff teams. In that sense, maybe I agree that they're second-tier. But that said, they're clearly trending up. You don't lead the league in scoring by accident. This team also beats the teams it should, and is taking other teams to the wire (or outright beating them - like against Dallas).

    I guess this is just a case of managing expectations. If you expected them to be world-beaters right off the bat, then you're going to be sorely disappointed every time they lose. If you expected them to have another sub-.500 season, then you'll probably be skeptical every time they take the field. But if you're of the opinion that this team has a good infusion of talent, a good QB, and an innovative HC, then you'll probably see every game objectively. That's where I am. This last game I saw a young team (sorry, but that's not an excuse) who faced a defense that is widely accepted as one of (if not THE) league's best, and they kept the game within grasp all the way to the final seconds despite shooting both feet repeatedly. And they could have/should have won. I mean, even the GSOT almost had their asses handed to them by Tampa before winning the SB. I'll never forget that. It told me that strength vs strength is a street fight. This team has no real dominance on one side of the ball right now, but they are becoming good on both sides. If this team of two years ago had an offense like this one here, we'd have already been in the playoffs. I trust McVay and Son of Bum to get their respective units squared away and finally get us that shot again. So, to me, losses along the way are inevitable. But the fight I see in this team today tells me that they're *quickly* becoming a strong *team*.

    I don't think too in-depth beyond that.
     
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  10. Hey Man

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    Thanks Merlin, good post, to me The Rams are fun to watch
    agian. The game against the Cowboys had me for the first time actually exhausted after the game. I turned on the Eagles game following the Rams and had to get off the couch and go outside and catch my breath, lol, never had that happen.
    I can't categorize the Rams in tiers but they are right where they should be, taking over Fishers team, dropping some players , drafting some, free agency pick ups, McVay did what he could for this year. He working with what he has and doing well imo, it just feels right, ya know!
     
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  11. LesBaker

    Mr. Savant
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    This was a good loss, if there ever was such a thing.
     
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  12. Rams43

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    The Rams are still on track to meet my expectations, record wise.

    The intangibles are exceeding my expectations.

    I think Wade has got this D producing at an efficient level and they will likely only improve on that, based on Wade’s history.

    Fassel will turn in a top 5 ST unit once again.

    McVay will tweak his O and I expect the players to gel together more and more as this season unfolds. Watkins, for example, is still a largely untapped resource. I see a future for Everett in this O this year. I’m very happy with this improving OL. Goff is growing by leaps and bounds right before our eyes. IOW, our O is ahead of anybody’s reasonable preseason expectations.

    Look, the Seahawks were damned lucky to get that win yesterday. I love the Rams chances in the rematch.

    We are even now still on track for a 10-6 season and tied for 1st place in our division. I’ll take it.

    Right smack dab where I had hoped and expected, tbh.

    Merlin is spot on. We are 2nd tier. As in not an elite team. But we’re definitely in the playoff hunt. And nobody knows it better than the Seahawks. Lol.
     
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  13. dolphinlover123

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    We are a good team that has a shot at the playoffs. That's all I ask for this season! :D
     
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  14. dieterbrock

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    And that is how you end a thread
    #truth
     
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  15. fearsomefour

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    That two game swing....9-7 or 11-5 is just so huge. The margins in the NFL are very small.
     
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  16. STLRam

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    This isn't directed at the OP but I'm sick of hearing the 'they're young' excuse for the Rams which is simply not true this year. This entire team has talent and 3rd and 4th year guys who should compete for division titles right now. I never said that during the Fisher era because we had terrible receivers, no special backs, and a bad OL, and rebuilt every season because Fisher sucked that much.

    The OL this year is probably one of the better ones in the league. We have a LEGIT #1 WR in Watkins who is a 3rd year guy who can be a top 5 receiver in the NFL. Woods would be a #1 on bad teams and is a great #2 for teams with an elite #1 and is in his 5th year. Gurley is in his 3rd year. Kupp has made better catches than Britt or Quick ever did. Austin should be considered a veteran at this point. The only one that is young and still learning on the offense is Goff. There probably are only a couple of teams in the entire league that wouldn't swap their offensive skill players with the Rams.

    We have for the first time since the early 2000s legitimate weapons on offense. The defense is there and will come into its own. If this team, this year doesn't have a winning record, it's a failure.
     
  17. SteveBrown

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    The 13-3 1999 Colts were a 2nd tier team. And, they floundered at home in the playoffs that year. May the Rams be as a good a 2nd tier team in 2017. Goff is a better thrower than Manning every was---now his team has to protect him like happy feet PM and we will fly.[ok, I know very few like that sentence:)]

    Mark my words, Mark, or any other man/woman here: because the Rams lost, there will be some minor tweaks on offense--- and the attitude of the red zone offense will change. IF we won yesterday, everything stays the same.

    I think Mr McVay gets it now: win in the redzone and we win; don't win in the redzone and we become 8-8 like Fisher.

    McVay is all about improvement. This Sunday we start!
     
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  18. Boston Ram

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    Let's be honest, nobody's knows anything about this team right now. This team could easily be 5-0.

    What I do know is this. We have a new staff, new offense, new defense, etc. This team is finding itself and don't know who they are either at this point. Let's see how they respond to this loss. How a team deals with adversity will tell you more about a team than anything.

    New England is 3-2, are they no longer elite? Buffalo and the Jets are 3-2. My point is it's just too early to make any judgements or assumptions about this team.

    About the only thing I am certain of is we are better than last year
     
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  19. RedRam

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    You know Sam Wyche?? Isn't he coaching High School football now or something?:pillowfight:
     
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  20. Farr Be It

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    #20 Farr Be It, Oct 10, 2017
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2017
    Great Post @Merlin

    I would probably split hairs on a couple things with you, but then hey, that is why this Site is so cool. Lot's of different perspectives making us think. (y)

    I see in there that you allow for the "tiers" to be a fluid thing. As such, I suppose I would agree that the Rams are not firing yet on all cylinders.

    But I would be quick to say that the "season" is actually the "preseason". In other words: The PLAYOFFS are actually the season. The only thing that matters is that you be one of the teams poised to be firing on all cylinders during the "season". And your ticket to the season, is in winning enough games during this 16 game "pre-season" to be invited to be one of the top-tier teams.

    I noticed you did not list the tiers, and the teams you believe reside in those tiers. It's because you can't. Not a criticism. I read your piece carefully. You acknowledge that the tiers are fluid. Kansas City is maybe one of the few consistent teams SO FAR this year. But they could easily hit a wall, suffer injuries, etc.

    Remember The NY Giants a few years back? I think the first Eli Manning Super Bowl. They sucked. (3rd tier?) 7-7 going into the final two weeks of the season. Then they ran the table and won the Super Bowl. Peaked at the right time. They were invited to the Season Tournament. Then they took off.

    The Rams are building to being a top tier team. A team that will get into the Season Tournament. In the mean time they are cutting their teeth in this pre-season testing period, logging enough wins to stay in striking distance, and getting ready to go on a streak of consistency, I believe, in which offense and defense fire on all cylinders. Then watch out. The Rams will compete for the title this year. I don't know how far they will get, but I am enjoying our top-tier team on their journey.


    This is a good one Karate61. Another good acronym for FEAR: False Evidence Appearing Real.
     
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