By Joe Abitanta

For many years, the St. Louis Rams have been one of the biggest jokes in the NFL. In the past years they came in 31st in 2011, 19th the previous year, 32nd the year before, and 31st the two years before that. But why might they be a contender now? A combination of Jeff Fisher’s coaching ability, Sam Bradford’s potential and a strange mix of the offensive weapons brought in over the years.

If the Rams can draft well this year, resign their young wide receiver Brandon Gibson, and bring in a powerful running back to replace Steven Jackson such as Peyton Hillis, or if they’re lucky, Rashard Mendenhall, then they may have a chance at the sixth seed in the NFC. This does entail that the Bears don’t turn it around and this past Vikings season goes down as a fluke, but they have a solid chance at a wild card spot.

For many years, running back Steven Jackson has been a major part of the Rams identity. Jackson has always been a great workhorse back, but sadly it’s time for the Rams to say goodbye. There comes a point in every running back’s career where they lose their value. This is happening right now to Steven Jackson, as well as Michael Turner, both are powerful backs who have taken a lot of big hits in their time. Hopefully, Jackson can do what most backs who are past their prime do, they sign with a passing team. It has been rumored that the Falcons are interested  in signing Jackson, which would be a good decision for the Falcons to have another goal line back to replace Michael Turner.

The real question is, will the Buccaneers be too much competition to be the NFC “team of the future”, but I’m going to pick the Rams. Although Tampa has a bright future, I don’t think this is their year, based on the fact that they simply don’t have a franchise quarterback in Josh Freeman. Maybe when the Saints and Falcons start to slow down the Buccaneers can make a playoff run, but for now, the big turnaround will be in St. Louis.

Last year, the Rams made the smart move of trading down to the fourteenth overall pick and selected Michael Brockers, a pass rusher with a good deal of potential. In the second round they got a steal in Janoris Jenkins, made a great pick drafting Daryl Richardson with the second to last pick in the draft, and snatched up Chris Givens in the fourth round. In past years, they drafted Robert Quinn, who proved this year that he can compete at a high level, Sam Bradford, who has shown that he deserved to be the number one overall pick, and Chris Long, an elite pass rusher. This talented young team may have a shot at making a run in next year’s playoffs.

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Readers Comments (1)

  1. Rebbe, The Great

    Are the Rams a playoff contender?
    No


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