What just happened there, friends? You feeling like you got punched in the gut? Like you're pissed you even thought the stupid, stupid, so stupid St. Louis Rams had a chance to win that game in Detroit?
Listen, no one hates the whole 'moral victory' bullshit more than I. But in the case of the Rams, it's been so long since I actually gave a crap about what happened in the final five minutes of game this team was involved in that I forgot what it was like to get irrationally angry at a TV.
And it was fun.
Also, I'm working on a meme for the purple women's cheaters that Coach Fisher drapes around his neck for game days. I don't know what he's trying to tell us with those. We'll get to the bottom of this.
1. When you're a loser, it's hard to not be a loser.
95% of NFL games in 2011-12 that had teams going +3 in turnovers resulted in a win. The Rams got three PLUS a pick-6 and still couldn't close. By the time the 4th quarter had about eight minutes left you could almost picture thought bubbles over the heads of the defense with things like "Holy Shit, is this real?" or "No poopy. No peepee" popping up.
Sure enough, they rolled over and burped up a loss. Capped by the 40,000th RB to catch a ball in the flat and then gash the Rams D for 10+ yards.
2. Then again,
The Rams gutted their roster and then rolled into Motor City to play a playoff contender with the youngest team in the NFL. We didn't expect to be debating the merits of a prevent defense protecting a 3 point lead.
The result was still a loss, but the Rams did dangle in front of us the prospect that Jeff Fisher has found some players with applebags. Jenoris Jenkins is the real deal. Cortland Finnegan was better then advertised. And the rotted corpse of Wayne Hunter came in and matched Jason Smith's carrer-long streak for not getting flagged for a false start.
These are things that a team can build on.
3. The injuries keep piling up.
Scott Wells left with a banged-up wheel. Rodger Saffold left on a stretcher. Add in Mike Brockers' uncertain future over the next several weeks and now you're looking at three of eight starting linemen out of the lineup. Coming off a 2-14 season, it's not too far a stretch to say you or I may just be on the depth chart for the Rams if it gets any worse.
We won't know until later in the week just how serious the Saffold and Wells injuries are. But any 'positive mojo' the Rams gained Sunday by keeping it close on the road could be wiped out by the fact that they can't build on it with the guys who matter.
4. In my notes, I had 10 minutes left in the 3rd quarter.
James Laurinaitis comes into a play that's been dead for 2 seconds and pops a runner downed. A little scrum ensued and insults about poor old mom were most likely hurled. Jeff Fisher teams are notorious for being assholes. And I mean that in the nicest way possible. They're always doing crap to get you off your game: remember this?
The D spit the bit. No doubt. But I do think the attitude adjustment is actually coming. And that's more than I could say after 32 games with Spags.
5. Penalties. Offense.
We need less of one and more of the other. I'll let you take a stab at which is which. With 8:18 left in the 3rd, the Rams had six more flags than the Lions, who were amongst the worst in the NFL last season. They seemed to clean it up later in the second half, but still ended up + 4.
Bradford and the WRs had another sub-200 yard game. In today's NFL, you're going to win very, very few games if you can't move the ball downfield in chunks. We're going to have to keep an eye out to see if this improves. Because that sexy foot of Young GZ can only go so far.
I literally was going to Tweet "Same old sorry-ass Rams" and was pushing send, hoping Ken Norton would see it... when I saw this. Bernie saved me. But several hours removed from the game... this one did feel different. Somehow. He's right.
Coach Fisher's 'Stache was WAY more optimistic than the rest of us heading into 2012.
Congratulations to that female ref. Really breaking down a gender wall I didn't think would get cracked. I bet women were rallying to laud her on... what's that? Lolo Jones is making unfunny sexist jokes about her? Really?
If that ref has a sense of humor she goes out with a gold whistle next week. And calls it Lolo.
Too lazy to fact check that. But DAAAAUUUUMMM. That's a long-ass career in the NFL. Nice work Hanson.
Urkel? Urkel is trolling us now?
Maybe this loss wasn't a moral victory after all. Nevermind on EVERYTHING.
Real Meter: (Where we project the Rams win total for the year): 6