OAKLAND CA - SEPTEMBER 19: Fred Robbins #98 of the St. Louis Rams is called for a roughing the passer penalty against Bruce Gradkowski #5 of the Oakland Raiders during an NFL game at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on September 19 2010 in Oakland California. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
The Rams are our problem child. We can't stop loving them, but we've tried everything to get them in line. Where do we turn now?
I don't have kids.
Maybe you do, maybe you don't. But I'd assume that parenting has to be one of the more difficult things to do in life. I mean, these booger-eating Rugrats came from YOU, right? How can they treat YOU like that?
What must be even worse? When you have a problem child. I've seen these kids. Screaming in restaurants, burning heaters under the bleachers while wearing a mildly offensive tee from Spencer's... whatever. And it's times like these when I realize that having a problem child must be like a daily jail sentence — you might have a few good days, but look up? Yup. You're still in jail.
These parents have probably tried everything, from therapy to tough love. They've ignored the kids, spanked the kids, pleaded with the kids. Still — no help. That little bastard is bound and determined to make everyone's life a living hell.
So what do they do? How do they manage?
Because, quite frankly, the St. Louis Rams are one big trucking problem child.
If you somehow missed the news, the Rammies are now 0-2 after snatching defeat from the jaws of victory against the Oakland Raiders.
Just like the occasional respite from the punishment of raising a problem child, we thought we were seeing a breakthrough in the first half. Steven Jackson was punishing the Raiders with some powerful running. Sam Bradford was picking up key first downs in the air. The defense was stout enough to get Jason Campbell removed from the game for ineffectiveness.
And then we were treated to the second half. A pooh-pooh platter of personal fouls, dropped interceptions, tepid offensive play calling and general ineptitude by everyone associated with the Rams.
The joys of a problem child.
So now we're all sitting here looking at a sure loss against the surprisingly strong Washington Redskins in Week 3 and the even more disturbing possibility that a top three pick is on the horizon in 2011 for a team that could barely afford a top three pick in 2010. Less than 20 days ago I was giddy with the excitement of a new season and new opportunities.
But as Ken Norton Jr. so eloquently put it: "Same old, sorry ass Rams."
What do we do?
Seriously, what do we do? A big part of me wants to just wash my hands of this cesspool of NFL football and enjoy my Red Zone Channel in peace. But just like you're not going to give up on a son or daughter, I can't abandon a team I grew up on and have gone this far with.
Another part of me wants to just use this forum to completely blast every single player, coach and management suit that put this team together and flog them until it bleeds. Then again, is that going to do anything? Am I really telling these people something they don't' already know? I'm pretty sure 1-17 in got a couple people's attention in the organization.
Still, I can't be all rah-rah about a team that is just so dreadful week after week after week. The NFL isn't a charity league. These guys are paid nicely to do one thing — win. And they can't seem to do that. Not last week. Not the week before. Not really ever. So to be happy about player X's improved play here or player Y's nice tackle there ... well, I just can't get myself that high on a group of players that collectively have done as little as any team in a two-year span in the history of this sport.
So what do we do?
How do we handle another terrible, awful, meaningless season? We've tried caring, being patient, getting angry and mad. We've done tears, laughter, finger-pointing and flipping the bird. I'm at an impasse on how to feel.
But at least with the Rams, I can always just go surf the net for porn.
I'm guessing raising a kid takes a little more discipline.