Robert Quinn is making the St. Louis Rams defense a must watch each weekend. For a young defense that has struggled on and off this season, Quinn has stepped up in a huge way providing a much needed spark. His 15 sacks trails only Robert Mathis‘ 16.5 for the NFL lead. We will take a look at just how disruptive of a force Quinn has been all season for the Rams.
It all started in Week 1 when St. Louis beat the Arizona Cardinals 27-24 in large part to Quinn’s three sacks and two forced fumbles. Since then Quinn has been held without a sack in five games this season. He has reached the multiple sack mark four times as well. The lack of games without a sack is showing his growth as a rusher and his inability to give up on a play. He has been flat out relentless in his pursuit of QBs, showing his desire to dismantle opposing offenses.
The perfect description of his conquest to wreck havoc on quarterbacks happened in the third quarter against the New Orleans Saints. You can find video of this play on YouTube and I highly suggest that you find it just to see the one man show that is Robert Quinn.
To start the play he was chip blocked by TE Jimmy Graham and fell to his knees. That wasn’t enough to deter him from finishing the play, though, as he crawled forward for a few yards only to get up and strip the ball out of Drew Brees‘ hands for another Quinn special. He ripped the ball out of Brees’ hands and recovered it for his seventh forced fumble of the season. It was another drive stopping play made by a man that is determined to be noticed.
On the first play of the game he was able to burst through the inside of the line, hit Brees and force his pass to fall short into the welcoming hands of rookie S T.J. McDonald. Let’s not forget about the second interception of the day when Brees was rolled out to the opposite side of Quinn in what could only be an attempt to avoid the player that was in his face all day.
Quinn’s 15 sacks on the season place him two away from the Rams’ franchise record of 17. It is certainly within reach with two games remaining for St. Louis. His seven forced fumbles on the season creates a gap of three between him and the current recorded season high of 10. That may be just out of reach for Quinn to reach, but you shouldn’t underestimate a player that can be one of the most game changing performers from a QBs blindside.
In order for Quinn to earn the Defensive Player of the Year award he will have to take over the sack lead from Robert Mathis and win the first ever Deacon Jones award. His team can help him by winning the next two games and going 8-8 on the season. A losing record can be the biggest detriment to a player trying to win a prestigious award, but voters should be able to get behind a player that led his team to their first .500 record in a long time. For now, lets enjoy the one man show for the next two Sundays and create a huge wave of momentum heading into the offseason.