The Rams aren't sure if Marc Bulger will return to the starting lineup because of bruised shoulder. Kyle Boller certainly didn't take advantage of his opportunity.
doesn't know yet whether he will be the Rams' starting quarterback for Sunday's game against the undefeated Vikings. But he does know if Marc Bulger
misses a second game with a bruised shoulder, he has to play a lot better than he did in Sunday's 35-0 loss to San Francisco.
"It's very frustrating," Boller said. "I felt like in the beginning, we were moving the ball a little bit, and then we'd have something that'd ... kill our drives."
Penalties and a lack of production on first down helped lead to nine possessions of three plays or fewer. With the score still 14-0 late in the third quarter, a Boller pass was intercepted by linebacker Patrick Willis
and returned 23 yards for a touchdown.
Said Boller, "I was trying to make a play, but ... I've been in this league long enough to know you never want to throw the ball across your body like that. I can't give them an easy score like that."
Against the 49ers, Boller completed 13 of 24 passes for 108 yards and had a passer rating of 48.6. In the two games he's played, his passer rating is 63.6, which is only slightly worse than Bulger's 70.6. Both have averaged less than 5 yards per pass attempt. Boller's passer rating in the second half of both games is 26.4.
To be fair, wide receiver Laurent Robinson
is out for the season with a fractured fibula. The starting receivers are now Donnie Avery
and Keenan Burton
, with Danny Amendola
and Ruvell Martin the third and fourth receivers. The latter two have been signed since the season began, and they have a combined total of 15 practices.
Fullback Mike Karney
believes Boller did "the best that he could do." Karney added, "You just can't hurt yourself, not in this league. I don't care who you're playing. The teams are too good."
QB Marc Bulger's availability for this week's game against the Vikings likely will be determined by whether he can practice Wednesday.
RB Steven Jackson has 95 touches in four games (83 rushes, 12 receptions), which represents 40.8 percent of the team's 233 offensive plays this season. Jackson's yardage — 367 rushing and 67 receiving — is 43.2 percent of the team's 1,005 yards.
WR Donnie Avery had his best game of the season Sunday against San Francisco, catching three passes for 47 yards (15.7-yard average). For the first time this season, he was able to add yards after the catch.
TE Randy McMichael is still having problems becoming a focal point of the team's offense. McMichael has 10 receptions in four games.
PK Josh Brown has made just one of four field-goal attempts this season after missing just five in 36 tries last season.
NT Clifton Ryan has been helping the team play solid run defense. Ryan has 13 tackles with nine solo in the first four games.
MLB James Laurinaitis continues to be a tackling machine in the first four games of his rookie season. After having 10 tackles Sunday, Laurinaitis now has 38 in four games, with 27 solo stops.
DT Marlon Favorite was released from the Rams' practice squad Tuesday.
LB Justin Roland was released from the Rams' practice squad Tuesday.