Found October 18, 2012 on Rams Herd:
  Syllogisms are often used to form conclusions in sports. For those that do not study logic, a syllogism is a form of a logical argument where the conclusion is inferred from two prior statements. An easy example is: All humans will eventually die. All football players are humans. All football players will eventually die. After the last two games, I began asking myself whether the following syllogism is true: Michael Brockers played without injury in the Arizona and Miami game. The Rams run defense improved dramatically in the Arizona and Miami game. Michael Brockers improved the Rams run defense. The title to this article is the conclusion of the above syllogism. I put it in the form of a question because I am a naturally curious person. I like to know the answer to the question why. Therefore, I went back and watched every run play in the Arizona and Miami game.[1]   The Arizona Cardinals wanted to run the ball against the St. Louis Rams. They were lucky to get 45 total rushing yards. Miami was planning on “taking advantage” of the Rams poor run defense.  The Dolphins ran the ball 18 times for a whopping 19 yards.  Therefore, the first two statements of the syllogism are true. However, after reviewing the film, it is difficult to say that Michael Brockers is the one person who is responsible for the improvement. When there is a big play against the football team, fans generally look for the one guy that caused the problem. When things are going well, fans typically want to point to one guy (ex. Ray Lewis) and say he caused the greatness. The hero/goat theory of football makes analysis easy. Unfortunately, many lazy radio talk show hosts and national analyst resort to this simplistic approach.  In this case, it is impossible to say that the run defense improved due to any one person. At the same time, fans should be excited to know that the entire defense is playing well, including Michael Brockers. They are doing their job, which allows the right person, in the right place to make the play.  I will give a few examples to justify my conclusion that it is the team, not an individual.  To begin with, the Rams have a fairly obvious rotation on the defensive line. Brockers plays with Langford, and Heard plays with Cudjo.  Sims often comes in at defensive end.  Therefore, no one person on the line is responsible for the improvement in run defense. Moreover, multiple people made multiple good plays to shut the running game down in both games.  I will use the Miami to give some specifics.  In the second run by Reggie Bush (at 5:08 in the 1st quarter), Brockers and Quinn did a great job of cutting off the edge.  Bush saw that he had nowhere to go.  He tried to change direction, but was tackled by Langford for a 5 yard loss.  At 6:13 in the second quarter, Hayes, Dunbar and Sims combined for an excellent play to stop Bush for no gain.  Hayes, got the tackle, but Sims and Dunbar caused Bush to head towards Hayes and were involved in the tackle.  At 14:53 in the third quarter, Reggie Bush was stopped after a two yard gain. Finnegan and Dahl both attacked through the same hole.  It appears that Dahl was blitzing. Finnegan, on the other hand, had coverage responsibility, but he noticed the run immediately. His quick response was quite impressive. Dahl got the credit for the tackle, but Finnegan’s fast response allowed Dahl to get in untouched. At 12:38 in the third quarter James Laurinaitis stopped Bush in his tracks for only a one yard gain. However, after watching the play on film, it is impossible to ignore how well Langford and Brockers handled the play. Within a millisecond of Laurinaitis stopping Bush in his tracks, Langford and Brockers grabbed hold of Bush from opposite sides.  Laurinaitis got the credit for the tackle, but Langford and Brockers were certainly involved. I hope you get the point. This entire defense is manning up to stop the run. In most situations in the NFL, rarely is one guy the reason for all of the good or all of the bad. At the same time, I would love to see how well the defense can play if Brockers gets to the point that he demands a double team.  I should note that I was generally impressed with Brockers’ play. In the Miami game, I could only see one situation where he was moved by the guard (often Incognito) from the place he wanted to be. There was also one situation in the Miami game, where he literally tossed his blocker to the side and got into a play.  At the same time, Brockers had no tackles in the Miami game and did not require double teams. If he is not going to have any stats, then he better occupy multiple blockers.  Otherwise, he is just another defensive tackle.  As a first round pick, he can’t be just another defensive tackle.  Therefore, this is something I will watch the rest of the season.        [1] I did not include the Seattle game.  Brockers returned in the game, but he was still having injury limitation and, in fact, left the game with an injury concern.  

Jeff Fisher had Rams scout team player don wig to look like Clay Matthews (photo)

In an interesting way to help his team prepare for its upcoming match-up with the Green Bay Packers on Sunday, St. Louis Rams head coach Jeff Fisher had one of the members of the squad’s scout team wear a long, blonde wig to mimic the flowing locks of Packers standout linebacker Clay Matthews. That’s scout [...]

Rams defense among top in NFL

For the St. Louis Rams defense, one year makes a big difference.  Just one season removed from having one of the worst defenses, particularly against the run, the Rams suddenly have one of the top defenses in the entire NFL. The Rams are allowing just 18.5 points per game which is fifth best in the NFL and is a big reason why the Rams are 3-3 on the season.  The three wins are...

Fisher has Rams player don wig

Rams head coach Jeff Fisher had a member of the scout team wear a blonde wig during practice so the team could practice locating Packers linebacker Clay Matthews.

Rams LB Sammy Brown wears blond Clay Matthews wig at practice

The St. Louis Rams are hosting the Green Bay Packers on Sunday, and Rams head coach Jeff Fisher is using an interesting plan to get his team prepared for the game. In order to get his offense acclimated to playing against Pro Bowl linebacker Clay Matthews, he had practice squad linebacker Sammy Brown wear a blond wig during practice. “I thought it was pretty cool,” defensive...

Rams showing depth at wide receiver

ST. LOUIS (AP) The St. Louis Rams have done a good job of filling in for injured wide receiver Danny Amendola. The team's leading receiver injured his shoulder against Arizona on Oct. 4, missed Sunday's loss at Miami and is expected to miss at least another three games. The rest of the receivers picked up the slack against the Dolphins with 10 players making a catch. While...

Wiber: Offensive line, poor drafts continue to hold Rams offense back

The St. Louis Rams defense is good.  It is really a good.  I mean a top 10 defense in the NFL good.  Actually, they are 7th in total defense in the National Football League. The Rams defense is so good this season partly because our defensive picks in the draft the last few years has been stellar.  With picks like Chris Long, Robert Quinn, Janoris Jenkins, and James Laurinaitis...

'Re-energized' Rams Relying on Youth, Defense

The St. Louis Rams, who haven't had a winning record since 2003, enter Sunday's home game against Green Bay with a 3-3 record. It's a new-look franchise, from the coach (Jeff Fisher) to the roster (31 of the 53 players are new to the team). A defense full of top picks is leading the way.

Cruddy Show: St. Louis Rams and Green Bay Packers preview

The St. Louis Rams will play host to the powerful Green Bay Packers at the Edward Jones Dome this Sunday. The Rams are 3-3 on the year behind third year quarterback Sam Bradford and have a chance to stay above .500 on the year with what would be an exceptional win against the Packers. Host Corey Rudd (@CoreyRudd) was joined by Shane Gray (@ShaneGmoSTLRams) to preview not only the...

Green Bay Packers at St. Louis Rams: Week 7 NFL Pick

Green Bay Packers (3-3) at St. Louis Rams (3-3) It’s funny how much the general public likes to overreact to one game. Last week, everyone was talking about “what’s wrong with the Packers?” and now some people are calling them the best team in the NFL once again. On top of that, they are being very heavily bet as road dogs here. As you may know if you read these picks often...

St. Louis Rams' notebook, Week 6 - holding steady

To the casual football fan, the St. Louis Rams didn't look too much like the lesser team in Sunday's loss to the Miami Dolphins. Sure, both teams currently sit at 3-3 following the game but so do 10 other NFL franchises, including the entire AFC East. The game didn't get nationally televised thanks to the Dallas Cowboys – Baltimore Ravens battle, but it still pitted...

NFC North: Beware the Bears' Defense and the Packers' Offense

The Bears unleash their top rated defense against the Lions on Monday night while the Packers look to keep rolling against the St. Louis Rams.
NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.