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RamView: Week 12 – Offensive Line

Fortunately this offensive line knows how to pass-protect, because none of them could run-block to save theirs, or Steven Jackson’s, lives, today. Jackson so frequently had to run over or around fallen or otherwise overwhelmed linemen in his own backfield, it looked like he was playing a human version of Frogger. Jacob Bell got blown two yards into the backfield on a Jackson loss in the 2nd. When the Rams got to the 1 later that quarter, the line couldn’t get any surge on 1st-and-goal, then Adam Goldberg got absolutely destroyed on 2nd-and-goal by LINEBACKER Joe Mays, on whom he has a SEVENTY pound advantage, giving Jackson nowhere to go on a 3-yard loss. (Free John Greco.) Criticize Jackson for dancing all you want, and he did miss a couple of outside lanes early, but what’s he supposed to do when he’s supposed to hit a hole and Bell falls down right in front of him? Seemed like that happened 3 or 4 times. The line was little help down the stretch. Jackson started one of the 4th-quarter 3-and-outs with a minimal gain after Daniel Fells couldn’t handle a LB. On a critical 3rd-and-4 inside the 2:00 warning, nothing for Jackson after Goldberg lost his feet and couldn’t get a block on the OLB. RBs averaged under 2.5 a carry, and Jackson spent most of the day slamming up the middle behind, let’s be honest, the Rams’ worst run blockers, guys who haven’t gotten it done most of the season. About the only block Jackson got was by Bajema on his 20-yard run in the 3rd. Jason Brown got in a couple of good run blocks, on Darby’s TD and on Amendola’s 30-yard end-around. Pass-blocking was where the line made its money this week, especially Rodger Saffold. I’m surprised to see Denver had even two sacks and figure they were statistical gifts after Bradford scrambles. Sam got more time to throw this week than he’s had in any other game. Saffold did a wonderful job holding the point in front of Bradford so he could throw to Bajema for the Rams’ 2nd TD. Saffold also threw a massive block right off the bat to spring Hoomanawanui on his TD. Good thing the line had possibly its best pass-protection game of the season, because when it came to run-blocking, they had possibly their worst.

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