The St. Louis Rams had to be thankful this holiday season to find the Arizona Cardinals on their schedule once again. The Rams hadn’t recorded a win since playing Arizona in week five and moving to 3-2 on the year. A lot has changed since then for the young bunch from St. Louis, but the result on Sunday against the Cards looked pretty much the same.
Perhaps the most encouraging aspect of Sunday’s game for the team was their improved play on defense. Again linebacker Jo-Lonn Dunbar was a tackling machine flying all over the field while he was joined by veterans Cortland Finnegan and James Laurinaitis as the team’s top tacklers. The day belonged to rookie Janoris Jenkins on defense however. The promising youngster intercepted fellow rookie starter for the Cardinals Ryan Lindley twice in the game and returned both for touchdowns. In total, the Rams picked off Lindley four times in the contest and that ultimately spelled doom for the Cards.
Offensively, the Rams are still a work in progress. On the positive side, the running game looked fierce in this one with Steven Jackson carrying the rock 24 times for 139 yards while rookie Daryl Richardson chipped in with seven totes for 32 yards of his own. On the flip side, quarterback Sam Bradford again struggled to find a rhythm going just 8-17 for 205 yards. He had two touchdowns on the day, but also took points off the board with his lone interception which took place in the end zone.
There are plenty of different ways to look at the Rams’ 31-17 victory over the Cardinals on Sunday, but overall the team has to be happy to have its first win in more than a month. It’s been a long time coming for this young group and hopefully they can use this as a catalyst to inspire some more confidence as the schedule heads into its final month.
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