By Joe Torosian —
“How are things in the clean world?”—Sheriff Bart of Rock Ridge
As the Rams faded and fell to the Titans on Sunday night, I put out requests for leads to this column.
I was told college basketball starts on Tuesday.
Or I could place the entire blame on Paris Hilton for bringing bad mojo to SoFi.
During a pregame interview, Paris did say, “I’m excited about seeing the Dodgers tonight. And I always love being in Chavez Ravine.”
I rest my case.
You can look at Friday’s “From The RamCave” and see my initial gut feeling was the Rams would lose. But I didn’t trust my gut. I was moved by King Henry going down, and let my heart take over. I took the Rams, and I missed. (It was a bad call Ripley. It was a bad call.)
Yet I went with my gut on the rest of my NFL picks and the Packers, Bengals, Bills, Cowboys, 49ers, Raiders, and Saints…all lost.
I am ever so thankful that I am not a betting man. Because if I were a betting man—so confident in my abilities to see into each NFL Sunday—I’d be a single man living in a van down by the river.
It was truly a “Thank You, Sir, May I Have Another?” Sunday for me.
My heart interferes with my objectivity in regards to the Rams. But as the game wore on…I didn’t start chucking things around the RamCave. I accepted it with quiet dignity and grace because I know there are fires Sean McVay, Aaron Donald, and Matthew Stafford have to go through to get where we all want them to be.
The Rams have the best talent in the NFL, but have been in need of a couple of keister-kickings to get in gear. Hopefully, Sunday night’s outcome, along with the Cardinals game, is a reminder that the team needs to be mentally tougher.
Enter Von Miller, who’s gone the distance before.
Off The Top:
*** I wanted to give the Rams O-Line a pass for last night but I was sacked before I could get the attempt off.
The offensive line was bad, and the interior of the offensive line was horrible. Horrible! We’re talking circa 2016 horrible. We’re talking Greg Robinson horrible.
***The defense was okay, but it was sloppy in crucial moments. Third and 11 completions for a first down? Leonard Floyd surrendering backside contain on Ryan Tannehill’s boot on fourth down at the goal line? (And nobody in the NFL has put a better block on Donald this season than Floyd.)
***Stafford looked mortal. Yes, he was under pressure and gave Tennessee two scores. And while those scores stung, the Rams still didn’t deserve to win this game.
***Am I the only one who wondered why the Rams were running empty (empty backfield/no running backs) so much when they couldn’t block anyone?
Note to McVay: Help your quarterback out a little bit. Whether Stafford likes running empty (which we hear he does) or not, put him under center once in a while. Oh, and by the way, when Darrell Henderson is breaking five yards off per crack—give him the ball.
***The officials did the Rams no favors. The roughing call on Aaron Donald in the fourth was a joke. Ogbo Okoronkwo’s roughing the passer was legit…But it was necessary so Tannehill—going forward—would know what a real roughing the passer penalty is. All for his own safety, of course.
Bengals-Browns? The Bengals are always going to Bengal.
There’s no truth to the rumor that Jared Goff threw three picks and fumbled twice in the Lions’ loss to Bye on Sunday. So stop the rumors.
In my preview on Friday, I also said the Bills should start Mitchell Trubisky against the Jaguars. When I saw the final score, I thought they did. When I saw the highlights, I thought they should have.
I don’t think Urban Meyer’s lap dance a few weeks ago matters much in Jacksonville this morning.
I’ve been rooting for the Chargers this season because you can see a lot of positives. But I knew the infatuation was only a skin-deep because I didn’t think twice about watching the Packers-Chiefs over the Bolts-Eagles.
Jordan Love American Style. Love got his shot, and it wasn’t a guaranteed outcome, but he got his shot. That is truly red, white, and blue. That’s American Style. He wasn’t great, but I expected his HC/OC to use his legs a bit more…and they didn’t use them at all.
The Chiefs have won twice in the last seven days, and I’m less sold on them now than before. They nearly lost to the Giants at home and barely beat a Packer team starting a rookie quarterback. If Ryan Fitzpatrick or Case Keenum had started that game for Green Bay, they would have won.
The special has disappeared in KC.
Fact: When Packer kicker Mason Crosby goes into a spin, he goes into a spin. Whether it’s his fault or not, his clanks come in bunches.
For me, Chiefs safety Daniel Sorensen is the new F.P. Santangelo.
Watching Denver beat, Dallas put a smile on my face. I wasn’t sold on the Cowboys, but I didn’t think Teddy Bridgewater and the Broncos would be the team to expose them.
There was so much Denver orange in JerryWorld yesterday, I began to think the Broncos had built an indoor stadium—in Texas.
In the end, Norris Weese was nowhere to be seen, and Denver got some payback for Super Bowl 12. (I’m sure that was heavy on their minds.)
The more I see of Kirk Cousins, the less I want to see of Kirk Cousins. And, honestly, Dalvin Cook is just okay. If he had Darrell Henderson’s vision, then we’d be talking special. There wasn’t a moment, not a moment, I thought the Vikings had a shot in Baltimore.
Cardinals go to San Francisco, play without Kyler & DeAndre, and win.
Nine weeks into the 2021 season, I’ve come to this conclusion—Frisco sucks.
Last Add Chargers: They won, but you can’t play Philly like that–needing a last-second field goal–and expect to be taken seriously.
The Dude abides…
2 Corinthians 10:5
Joe T. is the author of “Tangent Dreams: A High School Football Novel” … “Temple City & The Company of The Ages” … “The Dead Bug Tales” … “The Dark Norm” & “FaithViews for Storm Riders”…all five available through Amazon.com.
Follow Joe on Twitter @joet13b
Be sure to read:
College Football Breakdown (Every Tuesday)
Standings & Stuff (Every Wednesday)
College Hoops Breakdown—by Riley Saxon
The Urena Express—by Steven Urena (MLB)
From The RamCave—by Joe T. (Every Friday)