One might think that a team coming off of a 38-8 drubbing of an opponent many had pegged as a dark horse to make it all the way to MetLife Stadium in February would want to keep rolling through opponents as quickly as possible. The St. Louis Rams were responsible for the aforementioned throttling in Week 10, but they have no problem with taking a week off following their best performance of the year.
Given the way this team has redefined the word inconsistency this season it really shouldn’t come as a surprise that they don’t mind the week off following a big win. I mean let’s be honest; these Rams are the same team that demolished the Houston Texans in their own house in Week 6 only to back that up with a severely disappointing effort where they lost they franchise quarterback Sam Bradford to a torn ACL in the next outing against the Carolina Panthers. A week off after one of the season’s highest highs should be a welcomed siesta rather than a cursed weekend on the sidelines.
Head coach Jeff Fisher has been adamant about driving that point home that the bye couldn’t come at a better time for his young squad telling the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
“I don’t think you’ll ever hear a coach say a bye comes at a bad time. It always comes at the perfect time, whatever the reason.”
In the middle of a grueling 16-game marathon it really should be seen as a welcomed vacation for all of the players who have been grinding away day after day since late July. The team’s elder statesman in linebacker Will Witherspoon gave the best insight into just what the NFL veteran gets from the bye saying:
“Sometime around the middle of the season is always pretty good. If you have it too early, you can have a really long stretch of games ahead of you. But then, after playing as well as we did today, you worry about trying to maintain the momentum. But I think we’re in a pretty decent spot. It’s a chance to get some guys healthy — or at least healthier — for the stretch run.”
The Rams may have a relatively late bye this season with only the Buffalo Bills, Cincinnati Bengals, Philadelphia Eagles, and Seattle Seahawks having a later bye in Week 12, but it’s still a much-needed break for this young squad. It will also help some injured guys get back onto the field when the team returns to action like tight end Lance Kendricks who is going to practice with a cast on his fractured finger. Guard Harvey Dahl is nearing a return from his knee injury as well while rookie safety T.J. McDonald’s lower-leg fracture is coming along nicely as he be back soon from the injured reserve/designated to return list.
The bottom line is the bye week couldn’t come at a better time for a young team poised to make another late-season run like last year. Don’t forget that the Rams were 3-6 heading into their bye last year before finishing the year 7-8-1. A similar finish this season could get this team to .500 for the first time since 2006 or potentially above .500 for the first time in a decade (2003).
Since losing Bradford for the season the Rams have banded together and played great. Don’t miss any more of their games as they ride the momentum and get your Rams tickets here.