May 23, 2012; St. Louis, MO, USA; St. Louis Rams running back Steven Jackson (39) talks with assistant coach Dave McGinnis during an OTA at ContinuityX Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-US PRESSWIRE

St. Louis Rams' Offseason Points To More Conservative Offense

The St. Louis Rams' new offense looks to bear a more-than-passing—and less passing—resemblance to Pat Shurmur's. Poor Sam Bradford.

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7 Total Updates since May 27, 2012
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St. Louis Rams Need Lance Kendricks To Perform In 2012

The St. Louis Rams will need a big season from disappointing rookie tight end Lance Kendricks.

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Sam Bradford’s Play Will Dictate The St. Louis Rams’ Needs In 2012

The St. Louis Rams famously missed out on both Justin Blackmon and Michael Floyd as a result of their heated pick-swapping ahead of the 2012 NFL Draft-resulting in the selection of Brian Quick and Chris Givens in later rounds-and failed to address their perceived holes in the offensive line at all there, so it makes sense that NFL analysts still believe those two spots to be their most urgent needs. But as important as the performance of Quick and Givens (and on the O-line, Jason Smith and Rodger Saffold) will be to how the Rams are seen going into 2013, the real key to the Rams' needs next year is how Sam Bradford performs.

If he fails, it'll be filtered through the continued absence of a No. 1 wide receiver and reliable blocking at the line. If he succeeds-and after two years and three increasingly expensive coaching changes the Rams are certainly hoping he will-no matter how the incumbent linemen and the new receivers perform, those needs will seem drastically less urgent.

It seems obvious, but it's hard to think about now, with the 2013 NFL Mock Draft season already in swing-if Sam Bradford performs as the Rams expected he would when they drafted him No. 1 overall, the stereotypical view of this team is going to be completely different from the one we've been stuck on for two years now.

More St. Louis Rams news and analysis from SB Nation St. Louis:

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St. Louis Rams Could Contend If They Find The Key To Sam Bradford

The St. Louis Rams have a lot of barriers standing between them and contention in 2012—they were among the worst teams in the NFL both on offense and defense, which is a nearly complete list of the things you can be bad at in football, and they've got an entirely new system to teach to a partially new team—but things aren't quite as diffuse as they seem at first. Their offensive woes are about more than just their quarterback, but they'll be dangerous no matter what if they can finally figure out what to do with Sam Bradford.

That is: The Rams' offensive problems aren't Sam Bradford's fault, exclusively, but they are almost all tied to figuring out how to make him more effective going into his third season as their quarterback-of-the-future. So putting Jason Smith and Rodger Saffold on high alert, drafting Brian Quick and Chris Givens and even Isaiah Pead, deciding on Steven Jackson's role as he (hopefully) gets less direct action per game—those are all attempts to treat the various problems that have together made Bradford look marginal at best.

If they've fixed enough of them that the cascading effects of the solutions free even a little of the talent that's been obvious since the Rams drafted him first overall, the situation at the Edward Jones Dome could change in a hurry.

More St. Louis Rams coverage hand-picked from SB Nation St. Louis, where we're still waiting to buy that Sam Bradford shersey.

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St. Louis Rams See Good Things From Sam Bradford, Brian Quick And Company So Far

Lots of things will have to go right for the St. Louis Rams to be good in 2012, but for them to be watchable in 2012 one piece of news is more important than the others—Sam Bradford needs to get into a rapport with second-round draft pick Brian Quick, and the sooner the better. If this long, funny article from Kathleen Nelson is any indication, early returns (and we do have an entire summer to go) are pretty good, so long as Quick remembers to take his headphones off early next time he has a flight to catch.

Having spent most of his time with receivers who were either known for nothing in particular or for their dynamism, incredible potential, and chronic knee injuries—sorry, Danario Alexander—Bradford seems excited about Quick's size and fluidity and fourth-round pick Chris Givens's speed. They're rookies, and neither was a first-rounder; it could be a while before they make this wide receiving corps bearable, if they ever do. But having tools to salivate about at all is a nice change of pace from where we were this time last year.

More St. Louis Rams news and analysis handpicked from SB Nation St. Louis:

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St. Louis Rams' Offense Looks Shurmur-ized For 2012

The St. Louis Rams' new offense looks to bear a more-than-passing—and less passing—resemblance to Pat Shurmur's. Poor Sam Bradford.

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