It is well-known that the days of scoring 30 or more points a game consistently are long gone. The St. Louis Rams are no longer revolved around their offense, and now rely primarily on the defense. In the difficult NFC West, having a good defense is the only way you are going to survive.
By no means was the Rams’ defense bad last season, but it surely wasn’t up to par from what many were led to expect going 2013. Too many times did the defense fail to make a stop when needed, and too many times did the defense look like they simply didn’t belong on the field.
Throughout the first four games of the season, the Rams defense consistently allowed the team to get behind early and put the offense in an almost impossible hole to climb out of. The Rams defense allowed running back Chris Johnson of the Titans to run over them and rush for his first 100 yard game and score his first touchdown the entire season in week nine.
Unlike in 2013, the 2012 Rams defense was able to take over games and not let games get out of hand for the offense. The defense took games over multiple times in 2012, something that we didn’t see often in 2013.
- defense helped defeat the Seahawks in the Edward Jones Dome only allowing the Seahawks to 13 points, the second fewest points that the Seahawks scored that season.
-The very next week, the Rams only allowed the Cardinals to three points
-In overtime against the 49ers, the defense took over to keep the game to a tie, in the second meeting against the 49ers, the defense scored just as many points as the offense.
-The next week against the Bills, the defense allowed only 12 points, allowing the Rams to win in the final minute 15-12.
-Held Seahawks to 14 points, offense failed to score on final play
-Defeated the Texans 38-13, defense scored a touchdown and caused four turnovers
-Defeated Bears 42-21, defense caused three turnovers and scored a touchdown
-Defeated Colts 38-8, defense caused 5 turnovers, scored twice
- Held Saints to 16 points, three turnovers, one touchdown
The Rams defense arguably played a part in four of the Rams seven wins last season, the same in 2012. However, it took the defense awhile to find their stride, and in the first quarter of the season, the defense allowed the offense to get down early and make it difficult to come back.
The Rams were without Sam Bradford, their starting quarterback, but in 2014, the defense will still have to step up and play with energy on a consistent basis. For the Rams to be successful in the NFC West, they need to defense to step up and play to their potential.
As shown above, you can see the ability is still there, it just needs to be done on a consistent basis. With Gregg Williams now the defensive coordinator, there is a lot of promise that this defense will play up to its potential.
It may be unfair to put that much pressure on the defense, however it is how this team was built with five first round picks and two more second round picks. The 49ers and Seahawks defenses take over games on a week to week basis, and there really is no reason the Rams defense can’t do the same.
As much as we would like the Rams’ dink and dunk, run the football first offense to score 30 points a game, it’s unrealistic. For this team to succeed, the defense will need to be able to keep the offense in the game and the offense will need to score points when needed. It’s easier said than done, but thats the way it is.
This team is only going to go as far as the defense takes them, with stars like Chris Long, Aaron Donald, Robert Quinn, James Laurinaitis, and Alec Ogletree, there is no reason this defense can’t carry the team on their back.
A lot of pressure has been put on Sam Bradford, but that same pressure, if not more, needs to be placed on the defense, because in the end, it is defense that wins championships.