Wednesday, November 24
Up-down Rams face hot Packers
By John Madden
I watched the Sunday night game between the Houston Texans and Green Bay Packers last week and as that game was coming down to the last drive and I'm just saying to myself "I know what is going to happen!" I felt that Brett Favre was saying the same thing to himself, his teammates were saying the same thing, the fans were saying the same thing and I believe that the Texans were probably saying the same thing! Uh oh, this guys got the ball and he's going down the field, he needs a win . . . and he does it!
This week is going to be a little tougher for Favre because one of the things he needs is a running game. With Ahman Green being banged up, it makes it tougher and there will be more pressure on him to make plays and the St. Louis Rams will play more pass defense and not worry about ganging up on the run. He still has his receivers in Javon Walker, Donald Driver, Bubba Franks in the red zone. You know he is going to do it but it is going to be a little tougher for him if they can't get the running game going.
For the St. Louis Rams their receivers are going to be the matchup the Rams want because they have the ability to go two, three, or four wide receivers. Somewhere along the line they are going to get the matchup that they want. The other thing you have to remember is Marc Bulger is a streak passer, he may throw an interception. He may throw a couple of bad balls and you say, boy, he just doesn't look very good tonight, and then he comes out and goes 12 for 12. You have to know that when you play against this Rams offense you are in it for the long haul, it's an all-day sucker!
One thing the Packers have back is Grady Jackson, their nose tackle. He really helps plug up the middle. That plays right into the hands of Mike Martz, he is the type of coach that starts calling pass plays and just keeps calling pass plays and never gets back to the run. In order for him to get back to the run someone has to remind him to mix it up. The thing that Martz will probably do is run on passing downs and that may be successful but running on running downs will be very difficult when Jackson is in the game.
Through the first 10 games of the season, the Rams find themselves 5-5 and that is exactly what they are -- not a very consistent team. The offense will come out and play well and the defense will forget to show up, the defense shows up and the offense will disappear. Last week their special teams and, in particular, their punter has a bad game. They just don't seem to be able to get all the parts together at once. That is the past and now is the present and for them to get to the playoffs they have to be able to find some consistency across the board and put together a few wins.
You can hear me with Adam Schein on Sirius NFL Radio on Friday and Monday afternoons on "Afternoon Blitz" and Sunday mornings on the "Sirius NFL Tailgate Show."