Linehan, Jackson Talk Seahawks

On Thursday, Rams head coach Scott Linehan and running back Steven Jackson talked about their upcoming game against the Seahawks, how to counter eight-man fronts, injury progress, Marc Bulger's recent upswing, Alex Barron's false starts, Isaiah Kacyvenski's new role, and more.

Head Coach Scott Linehan

(On wanting practice to be more intense)

“It’s more that and what we’re correcting and plays, defensive calls. I think that’s going to be something that’s got to improve for us to win a game of this magnitude.”

(On QB Marc Bulger’s six-game stretch of having at least a 100.0 passer rating)

“I think Marc’s been playing pretty consistent for a number of years. You exclude last year with the injury. He wasn’t out there. I think when he played, he was playing pretty well. I don’t think that’s anything pretty new. I think it’s pretty much the norm that it’s not noticed much. That’s not the important thing right now. I think it’s important that we just keep continuing to improve there and I think things will benefit us by his play and his performance. He’s got to keep playing that way and he’ll give us a great chance to win these games down the stretch.”

(On how Bulger is rarely referred to as one of the best quarterbacks in the league)

“I really don’t know. I don’t really know why that is. I know that’s not the way we think around here. That’s really all that matters to us.”

(On S J.R. Reed and the return game during practice)

“He’s been able to get himself fresh. He hasn’t been playing. Has been getting a lot of snaps. He’s done a lot in show team. There was a lot of tempo and intensity to our return game today. J.R. certainly wants to take advantage of a fresh, new start really.”

(On the timing of the blocking in the return game)

“It was closer. It still wasn’t anything to write home about, but it was much, much better. One more block, one more finish gives us a chance to find that crease for that big return. If we’re getting the ball out close to the 30 and then you get a big return in a game, you’re having a good day returning the ball as a kick return team.”

(On LB Pisa Tinoisamoa’s practice)

“He had another good day. Didn’t miss a beat. It’s looking more and more positive for this week.”

(On T Alex Barron’s performance this week)

“He’s looking fine. Some of the tension’s obviously on penalties, but I think he’s performed very well this week.”

(On if Barron has had the same problems in practice that he’s had in games)

“Like I said the other day, if you eliminate these mistakes before the snap, it hasn’t been an issue. I think he’s improved in that area every game.”

(On if they’re able to work on pre-snaps in practice)

“You can. I think it’s emphasized, but I think the intensity by which we hold accountable has got to change. It’s not okay. It’s kind of hard to explain. You go out in training camp and run and do all that. I think the accountability factor’s just got to land right on the lap of the person that’s making the mistake, and he’s got to fix it so the team’s got a better chance of being successful. We work crowd noise with a silent snap. That actually helps. I don’t think we’ve really had a problem much with that, although we had one in right at the end of the San Diego game. Those things are just things we’ve got to eliminate. It hinders of chance to be successful.”

(On changes they will make to protect Bulger from being sacked)

“I think you’ve got to have better technique when it’s not a blitz. We can’t lunge and miss a guy when it is. If it’s long yardage, we’ve got to develop a plan that enables the ball to come out of the quarterback’s hands at times. It’s a combination. Like I always say, it’s coaching and playing. Taking accountability for it, and making sure that we don’t let that happen again.”

(On if LB Isaiah Kacyvenski is ready to play on defense)

“The last time we played [against Seattle] was his first week. He would have been an emergency at defense. Now he’s had a number of reps there and is much more comfortable playing if we called on him.”

(On if RB Kay-Jay Harris is ready to play)

“He could play. If we called on him he could play. He knows the run game and the protections, for the most part, are the same. Anything that would be different we would avoid using with him. Most of them are pretty much the same for him so that picks up the learning curve for him. He’s going to have an opportunity to help us on special teams right away.”

(On Harris’ chances of playing on Sunday)

“I think he has a very good chance of being up.”

(On DE Tony Bryant’s progress and his state of readiness)

“We’re considering that this week. First of all, I think he’s in much better shape now. Had a little problem with soreness in his knee. He’s had a knee that’s bothering him the last year or two. Looks much better this week. He’s definitely a candidate for being up this week.”

RB Steven Jackson

(On what the Rams need to do so he can be more productive running the ball)

“I just think that we have to be solid up front (because) they’re not doing anything different from what we faced all year. Of course they made the running game a priority, but knowing that, we have adjustments to make and Coach (Scott) Linehan has a gameplan to get me the ball other ways.”

(On the Rams taking advantage what the defense gives them)

“Each weekend we expect a team to take away either our passing game or our running game and we go from there. Last week they tried to double Torry (Holt) and Isaac (Bruce), which left me open a lot and I tried to make plays that way. Whatever they try to take away from us, we’re up to the task to exploit what they’re giving us.”

(On what Seattle did to limit his productivity in their first meeting of the season)

“Nothing in particular, they just used an eight-man box, which is hard to run against. Knowing that allowed for Torry (Holt) and those guys to make plays through the air, which they did.”

(On how to attack an eight-man box with the running game)

“You just have to be constantly chipping away at the defense, but sometimes the game may get away from you and you have to come back and put points on the board. It all depends on how the course of the game is going. If it’s a 3-3 game of course you can chip away at an eight-man box. We have a lot of playmakers on the field, so you can’t be greedy and ask coach to get you 30 or 40 carries when you have guys on the outside that can make big plays.”

(On how the running backs can better protect QB Marc Bulger)

“As a backfield I think myself and the fullbacks have to be a little bit more patient, not try to get down in our routes, make sure that the edges are protected on our tackles, and make sure we’re on the same call and protection with the offensive line. They move a lot on defense so we always want to make sure we’re all on the same page.”

(On the game against the Seahawks being very important)

“We feel that it is (a big game). It’s the first game after the mid-season point, it’s a huge rival and division foe, so we would like to get back on our winning ways, and it wouldn’t bigger than to get one there.”

(On the Rams’ intensity being where it needs to be)

“I believe so. With Pisa (Tinoisamoa) coming back in the lineup I think that’s a breath of fresh air on that side of the ball. Coach has really stressed the point of getting back to protecting the ball and the defense making plays like they did at the beginning of the season.” Top Stories