Postscripts — Sept. 19 blog

Today's "Postscripts" features a warning about the St. Louis Rams offense, updates on Simeon Rice and the Bucs' nickel formation, plus news about Barrett Ruud.

Wednesday, Sept. 19

These Rams are still dangerous on offense

I watched the Rams-49ers game yesterday for research purposes, and here's a few things you need to know about them:

Marc Bulger is taking a beating. I can't tell you how many times he popped up after a hit shaking his hand or limping ever so slightly. But he's a football player so he shook it off. He's going to need to be tough to survive this offensive line.

Bulger has had 21 different offensive line combinations in his Rams career. This current line — sans tackle Orlando Pace — is going to be a work in progress. The injury to G Richie Incognito didn't help matters, either.

Despite all the shortcomings up front, this team is still moving the football well and still putting itself in position to do some damage. The only reasons, offensively, the Rams didn't beat the 49ers was too many dropped passes and key mistakes by the receivers.

So simply because that offensive line is banged up doesn't mean the Rams aren't dan gerous on offense. As long as they have Bulger, Torry Holt and Isaac Bruce, they will be.

I wasn't to impressed with the defense, even though it held San Francisco to 17 points. They gave up big plays two weeks ago against Carolina. And the special teams coverage units looked really sorry against the 49ers. Maurice Hicks ran all over them on kickoff returns.

I'm actually leaning toward picking the Bucs this week. But we'll see.

Links to the best Bucs stories

Tuesday is always a slow day in the NFL. It's a players' day off. But at we're still keeping you informed. Up at the site right now are our weekly Film Session and First Look articles. Film Session is a breakdown of some of the best and worst plays of the Saints-Bucs game by yours truly, while the First Look article is an update on the Rams entering this weekend.

The Tampa Tribune sent staffer Bob Bellone to Denver to update the progress of former defensive end Simeon Rice. He's getting closer to being ready to play for the Broncos.

The St. Petersburg Times produced this article on the formations defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin used to counter the Saints' three-wide receiver sets last week. Don Shula, the former Dolphins coach, was one of the first to use the nickel formation.

Linebacker Barrett Ruud is the NFC Defensive Player of the Week. I'll be talking to him later today for an article you can find on on Thursday morning. So check in then. If anything breaks, I'll let you know. MP

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