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RamView: Week 17 – Part 4

Offensive line: Another disaster today was the o-line, which should have been expected, really. Rams season in a nutshell: Season-long practice-squadder Roger Allen started at guard. And got hurt in the second quarter, which moved the paripatetically-out-of-position Adam Goldberg to LG and put another season-long practice squadder, Phil Trautwein, in at RT for his first professional action. Hoo boy. The 49ers were all over that like Joey Chestnut on a platter of franks, and the Rams wound up allowing a dreadful EIGHT sacks, FOUR of them by Justin Freaking Smith, and gave Jackson very little running room. Some of the sack problem was quarterbacking mistakes, but most of it was the Rams being just plain overmatched. Allen was awful in his limited action. He gave Smith a free run at Null for the 2nd 49er sack and got smoked by Demetric Evans for another. Evans didn’t even put that much of a move on Allen, who looked like he was just guessing where to try to block. Goldberg had a surprisingly poor game. Haralson beat him at RT for half of the first sack of Null, and Smith just knocked him to the ground at LG en route to the 4th sack of Null. I think Goldberg was also responsible for Smith’s fourth sack. He picked up Patrick Willis blitzing on the outside, but his responsibility was probably Smith on the interior rush after Alex Barron let him go. Jackson gave up the eighth and final sack to Dre Bly, his first poor blitz pickup in several weeks. Chemistry, continuity and experience are all vital to having a good offensive line. The Rams have talent on their line but end the season way short on those other qualities. It’s easy to see why they’ve struggled but fair to say they can become better.

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