2008 Record: 2-14, Fourth NFC West
Head Coach: Steve Spagnuolo; First Year
Key Additions: SS James Butler, C Jason Brown, FB Mike Karney
Key Losses: WR Torry Holt, OT Orlando Pace, QB Trent Green, S Corey Chavous
1st Round Draft Picks: Jason Smith—Offensive Tackle
2nd Round Draft Picks: James Laurinaitis—Linebacker
Well, there wasn't much positive coming out of St. Louis in 2008. However, being under the lead of an interim coach, things will have to look up in the 2009 season, they hope.
The Rams hired ex-Giants defensive coordinator and Philadelphia Eagles assistant coach, Steve Spagnuolo, who was highly pursued this past off-season. Star running back Steven Jackson missed four games and struggled throughout the season, and the once "Greatest Show on Turf" looked like it didn't even belong near any turf.
The offense ranked 30th in the NFL, and the defense came in right behind at 31st.
Much to be improved on, but most of it sits within the organization.
Defensive tackle Adam Carriker will look to finally make an impact in his third NFL season after decreasing in production from his rookie year.
Chris Long put forth a strong showing in his rookie season with 40 tackles, 4.0 sacks and a forced fumble. He can only improve, and this is exactly what the Rams will need.
They added Ohio State standout James Laurinaitis through the second round of the NFL draft, and signed former Giant James Butler to help out the defensive backfield.
Tye Hill and former Nittany Lion, Justin King bring youth to the defensive backfield. Five year veteran O.J. Otogwe brings back his stellar 2008 where he recorded 85 tackles, six forced fumbles, and five interceptions.
The pieces are there for the defense, the players just have to step up and put it all together.
The offense once again bring Marc Bulger to lead the charge, but throwing just 11 touchdowns the past two seasons, he's becoming less and less reliable as a starting quarterback.
The loss of two former all-stars in tackle Orlando Pace and receiver Torry Holt will certainly not help Bulger out.
First round draft pick, Jason Brown, will look to replace Pace, but has big shoes to fill.
Donnie Avery seems as the only reliable target on the roster, but as a second year player, is he going to be able to handle being the No. 1?
The Rams need Steven Jackson to return to his pre-2008 form. Jackson is a bruising back, and is certainly able to provide a needed spark at any point in the game.
Head Coach Spagnuolo will take the "Greatest Show on Turf," and show it some defense. Hopefully this will be enough to put the Rams back in contention.
Season Prediction: 4-12, Fourth In NFC West