TSX: Rams Report Card

The St. Louis Rams defeated the San Diego Chargers 20-17 on Sunday at the Edward Jones Dome. See how The Sports Xchange graded the Rams' performance.


PASSING OFFENSE: B -- The Rams got rookie WR Danario Alexander involved in the first half, and he contributed a 38-yard touchdown. Alexander's 72 yards accounted for 36 percent of QB Sam Bradford's total (198) for the game. Bradford didn't have an interception, and two of the three sacks came on plays where he wasn't able to get in position to throw the ball away rolling to his left. He had only seven pass attempts with three completions in the second half, but one was a key third-and-9 pass to TE Billy Bajema that gained 18 yards and got the Rams in position for their final field goal.

RUSHING OFFENSE: B -- RB Steven Jackson averaged just 3.8 yards per rush, but he gained 25 yards on five carries in the final drive that ran out the clock and kept the Chargers from getting the ball back. Jackson finished with 109 yards, his second straight game with 100 or more yards, and he is now 32 yards away from become the franchise's all-time leading rusher.

PASS DEFENSE: A -- Pressure on QB Philip Rivers was consistent, sacking him seven times, and holding him to a passer rating of 77.4. S Oshiomogho Atogwe had an end-zone interception in which he wrested the ball away from WR Malcom Floyd. Nine of Rivers' 22 completions were to running backs.

RUSH DEFENSE: A-minus -- The Rams held the Chargers to 79 yards rushing as a team, and even though RB Ryan Mathews averaged 5.3 yards an attempt, he totaled 64 yards on 12 carries.

SPECIAL TEAMS: B -- The coverage teams were solid, and Danny Amendola had a 42-yard punt return that set up the Rams' first points of the game. Donnie Jones had a subpar day punting with just a 41.2-yard average and a 35.7-yard net. DE James Hall blocked a field-goal attempt, although PK Nate Kaeding slipped on the play. Most important was a 48-yard field goal by Josh Brown that gave the Rams a 10-point lead with 4:15 left in the game.

COACHING: A -- For motivation and strategy. Coach Steve Spagnuolo had his team focused on the Chargers after a bad loss to the Lions, and he presented a plan about how to beat the Chargers that players bought into. Aggression on defense took San Diego out of its game, and the offensive staff created a package for WR Danario Alexander that resulted in big plays.

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