ST. LOUIS (KMOV) -- The Rams needed to make one more play on defense or convert one more third down. They fell short. Disappointing that they couldn’t finish what they started but hardly discouraging.
The team that I saw at Ford Field in no way resembled the team that I watched in 2011.
For starters, the defensive game plan was masterful. Jeff Fisher confused Matt Stafford and the Rams made big plays. They intercepted three passes for the first time in almost 23 months. The Rams offense did not commit a turnover. They committed just one false start. Sam Bradford’s QB rating was 105 and change, 34 points higher than his 2011 rating. Sam may not have been spectacular but that number indicates he was efficient.
Keep in mind the Rams were 0-8 on the road in 2011 and were outscored 188 to 52 in those game. They lost those eight games by an average of 17 points. They took the Lions, a playoff team in 2011 and prohibitive favorites, to the brink Sunday. I see that as progress. The next step will be teaching a young football team to put a reeling opponent away.
It was fun to call three-plus hours of relevant football for a change. I’m well aware that the NFL is a bottom line league. Teams are judged on wins and losses. Sunday was another loss. The 66th loss in the last 81 games. But that loss looked nothing like the 14 we saw in 2011. And so far the 2012 Rams look nothing like the 2011 edition.