I realize this happened a few days ago, but I haven’t had a chance to sit down this weekend so I have barely gotten a chance to see any news about it at all. Usually I leave all the NFL news to Weller since that’s pretty much his life but I feel like this one is special since I’m a Rams fan. Yeah, it did hurt a bit to type that.
Anyway, the Rams just inked their franchise savior to the richest rookie deal in history and it will probably stay that way until there’s another uncapped year in the NFL. He’s guaranteed a cool 50 million bucks and the deal could reach 86 million if all the performance incentives are reached. Must be nice.
Back during draft time, I was firmly entrenched in the Suh camp but since then I’ve read nothing but great things about Mr. Bradford. Of course, great things are being written about all rookies at this point, but still, we need some optimism. The more I attempt to justify the selection, the happier I am with it. I’d love to have another full year of Jason Smith and a year of experience for Rodger Saffold before thrusting Bradford and his surgically repaired shoulder into the fire. Of course, that would have involved drafting Suh and taking Ryan Mallett first next year, but they didn’t ask for my opinion.
But since we’ve got our new 50 million dollar man, we can’t have him sit the bench behind future Hall of Famer AJ Feeley, right? Rams fans have been treated to six wins in three years. That’s incredible. By comparison, the Colts have had four win streaks of at least six games in the last three years. We’re starving for results (other than losses). Actually, on second thought, I’ll even accept competitive losses. Some teams can afford to let their future wait a year holding a clipboard but I don’t think the Rams are one of them.
Obviously, that comes with a huge risk. The Rams have an inexperienced and injury prone offensive line. The projected starting tackles have started a combined five games in this league. That’s a little scary. Actually, that’s a lot scary. As pessimistic as this sounds, I’d like to throw Bradford out there before our O-Line is devastated by injury. If AJ Feeley starts the season #1, he plays behind our best offensive line. In week three when Brian Orakpo comes off the edge completely untouched and concusses Feeley, we’ll throw Keith Null out there. He’ll last maybe two weeks because both Jason Smith and Saffold have knee injuries so we’re down to whoever the backup OTs are so he’ll suffer what will be called a “sports hernia” because he was sacked 9 times in one game. Then we’ll put Bradford out there after starting guard Jacob Bell, our nameless backup left tackle and starting center Jason Brown have all gone down with injuries. What does that lead to? Well, probably a career ended injury because he’ll be taken out at high and low at the same time, tearing up his knee, shoulder and his eye will probably fall out Any Given Sunday style.
That concussion doesn’t sound so bad now, does it?
Yeah, that’s a little dramatic but you get the idea. I’m working under the assumption that Bradford will get hurt and he will miss some time this year. The Rams haven’t had the same QB start all 16 games in a year since 2006 when Marc Bulger completed the feat. I’d just rather Bradford start the year behind the best O-Line that we can field so maybe we’ll catch a glimpse of what is to come.
I asked Weller if he’d write a post that compared the 1998 Colts with the 2010 Rams. As you know, Weller has borderline creepy obsession with Manning and that was his rookie year. Indy went 3-13 and Manning tossed 26 TDs and 28 interceptions. Obviously, things have only gone up since then. They had a 25-year-old Marshall Faulk, we have a 27-year-old Steven Jackson. Marvin Harrison was entering his third year in the league which is exactly what Donnie Avery is about to do. What I’m hoping is that he’ll find that there are some similarities between that team and our team so our 3-13 record won’t look so bad.
In short, I’m rambling. It happens. What I’m hoping you take away from this is that I want Sam Bradford to start for the Rams in Week 1 and that I won’t be overly concerned when he throws 30 interceptions. If he makes it through this year without a career ending injury, I’ll call it a success.