The St. Louis Rams are 0-2 going into this weekend’s tilt against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-1), who are looking to ride the momentum of a strong 31-14 win over the New Orleans Saints last week. One can assume at this juncture of the season that this is a “must-win” game for the Rams if they want to remain in the tight NFC West race.
The Rams have a high-octane offense; it begins with quarterback Marc Bulger, who you can’t really blame for the Rams’ slow start (46-83, 535 yards and 2 touchdowns). Running back Steven Jackson, on the other hand is struggling a bit (39 carries, only 118 yards – a 3.0 yards per varry average) so he needs to step it up to take pressure off of Bulger. Wide receiver Isaac Bruce is having a strong effort so far this season, leading the Rams in receiving with 11 receptions for 165 yards. But turnovers have been the problem with the Rams so far. Good example – the Rams have lost 6 balls so far this season, so they need to improve on that stat.
The Buccaneers have 2 totally different game efforts this season; they looked overwhelmed against the Seattle Seahawks (a loss) while being dominant against the New Orleans Saints (a win). QB Jeff Garcia is as usual efficient thus far (29-for-43, 444 yards, 2 TD’s and zero interceptions. WR Joey Galloway is putting up excellent numbers thus far (207 yards on only 9 receptions with 2 TD’s) and hopes to do the same against the Rams’ secondary.
This game should be entertaining, assuming the Rams hold onto the ball and put up the offense they’re known for. The Bucs need a strong effort from RB Carnell Williams this week as his ribs are in relatively good shape. Expect some scoring from both sides, but the Rams’ offense will provide enough spark to give the Rams their first win of the year.