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Rams Dominate Saints, Earn First Victory of Season
Posted By Chaz Ingram On Oct 31 2011 @ 10:29 pm In St. Louis Rams,Winnipeg Blue Bombers | No Comments
A miracle took place this past week in St. Louis. And no, I’m not referring to the World Series triumph the St. Louis Cardinals experienced over the Texas Rangers, although just as unexpected. I’m actually referring to the Rams’ shocking win over the Saints at the Edward Jones Dome on Sunday.
Perhaps motivated by the Cardinals attendance at the Dome on Sunday the St. Louis Rams snapped out of their early season funk with a stunning 31-21 win over the New Orleans Saints to earn their first victory of the season. Equally as shocking was the fact that the Rams did this without their starting QB Sam Bradford, last year’s rookie of the year who is still nursing a high ankle sprain. Bradford’s backup A.J. Feeley, starting his second game of the season, didn’t exactly light it up in any offensive category, showed great leadership and did his part to help stabilize an offense that, to this point, had been off balance to say the least.
As if the win itself wasn’t shocking enough the Rams finally flexed its defensive muscles that was totally absent last week when they were scorched for 294 yards rushing in a 34-7 loss to Dallas. The defense allowed only 56 yards rushing and 269 yards passing to QB Drew Brees who leads the league with over 2,700 yards, had his lowest output of the season. St. Louis also sacked Brees six times, three by defensive end Chris Long.
The suddenly defensive minded Rams forced two Brees’ interceptions, one returned for a TD by safety Darian Stewart. Keep in mind the Rams defense did this against an offense that’s coming off a 62-7 showing against Indianapolis last week. Brees struggled all game to throw the ball down field as he completed only 1 of 7 passes for 15 yards or more in that category. Entering the game he led the league in percentage (62.7%) on such passes.
The score may indicate a close game, but it was anything but that as the Rams lead 17-0 at the half and had 24 points before the Saints got their first with 1:21 remaining in the third quarter. Leading 24-14 in the fourth quarter and the Saints driving Stewart returned a Brees’ pass 27 yards for a TD to make the score 31-14 Rams essentially sealing the game.
The Rams finally showed signs of life on offense after averaging only 12.3 points per game and 304.3 yards during their first six. Jackson wound up with 159 yards rushing on 25 carries and two TD‘s, his second consecutive 100 yard game. QB Feeley passed for 175 yards, one TD and no interceptions.
In no way am I suggesting that Feeley should replace Bradford, but the Rams’ victory over a quality opponent makes it nice to know that the Rams have a backup who is capable of carrying the team in in his absence. Bradford is scheduled to return next week against Arizona. If he doesn’t I think Feeley can handle the assignment.
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