The moment we have been anxiously waiting for all week is nearly here, and I for one can barely contain myself. The Rams and Chiefs will kick off at noon today from the Edward Jones Dome, so here are some keys and some things to watch for.
Storm The Cassel – I am still pretty sure Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel will start under center unless something happens between now and then, and if he plays, we have to be all over him all day. He didn’t take a ton of reps in practice this week, and I guarantee he is still going to be tender on and around the operated area. The Rams need to hit him even if they don’t get the sack, and I could see Cassel getting happy feet if we get on him early. If he stays clean and comfortable, we could be in trouble.
Thunder And Lightning – I know that’s not the nickname for Thomas Jones and Jamaal Charles, but it certainly fits. These guys have been running all over everybody this season, but the the Rams’ can’t let that happen if they want to win. I think these guys combined will get their yards, but they key is limiting the big plays. Put the Chiefs in third-and-mid or long and I think we will be in a good position.
Something’s Different – It’s not completely different, but the Rams will be seeing a 3-4 defense from the Chiefs in this game. We have struggled a bit against the 3-4 this season, so the offensive line will have to be better today if we are going to move the ball consistently. This Chiefs defense is pretty good, but they can be had. How the team handles the 3-4 alignment could determine the outcome.
Home Field Advantage? – I’ve heard rumors that the Dome is going to be heavily populated by Chiefs fans today, and I hope that’s not the case. This is the biggest NFL game in St. Louis in a number of years, and it would be a shame if the people don’t recognize that. The Rams had to go to a silent count the last time the Chiefs were in town because of all the visiting fans, so don’t let that happen again. Dome Field Advantage could play a major role in this game, so be loud and be proud if you are in the house.
Now, for my prediction. As those of you who are regular readers know, I usually get a gut feeling about the outcome before Sunday’s game, and my prediction usually reflects that hunch. With that being said, I have no idea what to predict here. Part of me really likes the Rams to get the win, but I’m starting to wonder if my emotion is clouding my judgement. I’m going to say 24-20 Rams, but I’m far from confident, not in the Rams, but in my prediction.