The LA Rams took a gigantic step forward this past week with the firing of incompetent trojan scum Jeff Fisher, replacing him for the last three games of this season with placekeeper John Fassel as interim head coach, but it’s still those same Rams on the field, with much the same schemes to screw up and overrated personnel to misuse all over and over, despite a couple of new wrinkles from the temporary head coach.
Former Special Teams Coordinator Fassel showed quite a bit in his first game in charge, and it was not pretty. I had commented somewhere earlier this week that the Rams’ Special Teams were the single most effective element of the team, producing far better results than the offense or the defense, inferring that Fassel might have had a bit to do
with that. However, in a effort to show that he might have some good ideas as a head coach, Fassel even screwed up the special teams, adding a fake punt/punter pass play that was, well, shall we say ineffective? Or is laughable a more accurate description? He also inserted a lineman in the backfield on one play, and when the game was still scoreless he disdained a field goal attempt to go for it on fourth-and-one from Seattle’s seven, but those are more the sorts of things that are done for publicity and the “see, I know how to mix stuff up” philosophy a guy desperate to impress pulls out of his sweaty, grimy cap.
But, in the end, it was, save for a couple of attempts to throw downfield, the same team that had lost its last three games by an average of 24 points now losing by 21. For the game and before being removed due to having his brain knocked sideways by Richard Sherman, Jared Goff had completed all of six of 17 pass attempts longer than five yards (35%), even below his season average of completing 43% of such passes. As usual, many of Goff’s passes were catchable by run-of-the-mill NFL-caliber receivers, none of which are employed by the LA Rams. The goat of the Falcon’s game, Michael Thomas, whose fumble of the opening kickoff set up a three-yard TD for Atlanta 10 seconds into the game, proved conclusively that he should be ironing pants at a dry cleaners in Pacoima, with miffs of passes thrown to the worst possible spot – into his hands. For the season, Thomas has actually caught two of the eight passes thrown to him. The rest of the team’s receivers have somehow managed to catch 58% of their intended passes.
There is an old sports adage that says that bad teams lose lots of close games. Well, a corollary of that is that really bad teams lose lots of lopsided games, and that says it all about the Rams. Last night marked the team’s fourth game this season in which they failed to score a touchdown, the most of any team. The 4-10 Rams complete their prodigal season at home against the Cardinals and the 49ers, and they could pull off a 180 and defeat both of those horrid teams and finish 6-10. Chances are more likely they win one of
the two, but what is the difference between 4-12, 5-11 and 6-10? The real issue is 2017 and onward, and the bigger question, bigger than the head coach issue, is who will pick the head coach?
The fact of the matter is that the Rams front office, from owner Stan Kroenke to General Manager Les Snead to “Executive Vice President of Football Operations & Chief Operating Officer” (nice title) Kevin Demoff, who used nepotism through his super-agent daddy to get that job, are absolute and total incompetents when it comes to personnel, more so than even was Fisher. Does ownership want to see the team get better and does ownership want a championship team to occupy the world’s most expensive and extravagant sports stadium the world will see?
If so, the change needs to start at the top, and a real, experienced football executive needs to be hired to 1) Not repeat the horrid, disgusting, long-range-debilitating fatal mistake of the draft choice trade that resulted in the drafting of Goff, and 2) To hire a solid new head coach with a great future ahead of him, and not merely in the past.