Claremore Daily Progress

Sports

December 6, 2012

NFL: Rams building a passing game

ST. LOUIS — Sam Bradford can't help but be excited about the St. Louis Rams' passing attack.

After two seasons with some of the least impressive receivers in the league, the third-year quarterback sees his options increasing with each week. His latest favorite target is rookie Chris Givens, who had a season-best 11 receptions in a 16-13 overtime victory against San Francisco on Sunday.

"This is the deepest we've ever been at wide receiver and we've added pieces each year that I've been here,'' said Bradford, who has seen his completion percentage, yards per catch and quarterback rating reach career-highs with three games left in the season. "This year, with the addition of (Brian) Quick and Givens, I think it gives us the most options we've ever had - which is nice because we have a nice complement of receivers who all do different things and who all do different things well.''

Givens' performance against the 49ers helped ease the loss of Danny Amendola, sidelined with a foot injury. He has missed four games this year and didn't practice Wednesday but still leads the team in receptions (51) and yards (576).

Givens is closing in: He had a high of 115 yards in a win at Arizona two weeks ago and has 559 for the season. Bradford has been looking his way, too: In the three games since he sat out a game for violating undisclosed team rules, Givens has had four, five and 11 receptions, respectively. He hasn't stretched the field as much, though; against San Francisco, his biggest gain was 16 yards.

"Everyone is really playing me for my speed and nobody really wants to get beat on the deep ball,'' Givens said. "So, we are using that to our advantage.''

Eight players have double-digit receptions for the Rams. Quick, a rookie, has seen limited action with just eight receptions but leads the team with an average of 17.3 yards per catch.

St. Louis (5-6-1) travels to Buffalo (5-7) on Sunday. Buffalo coach Chan Gailey called Bradford a "gunslinger'' during a teleconference, a remark the quarterback smiled at but said was a natural progression for the team.

"I think it was just getting used to some of the personnel we have now,'' he said. "But I think it's been really good for our offense that people have seen us throw the ball down the field. It's backed people off.''

Brandon Gibson, who picked up most of the slack when Amendola was out earlier in the season with a shoulder injury, has experienced the depth of receiving options. He hasn't had a reception in the past two games, despite starting both, and Bradford never threw at him against the 49ers.

Of the 26 catches, 11 were by running backs or tight end Lance Kendricks.

"We have a well-rounded group, even with the backs and tight ends and wide receivers, obviously,'' Gibson said. "We've got a lot of talent.''

That talent is being demonstrated by Givens, who has emerged as the go-to receiver for Bradford. At least for now.

"I've just tried to come out and watch other guys and learn how to run the intermediate routes as well as the deep routes,'' Givens said. "Now, you're starting to see that practice and hard work paying off a little bit.''

 

1
Text Only
Sports
  • DSC_0111web.jpg ‘Team behind the Team’

    For the second-straight year, the Claremore Zebra student training staff will be represented in the Oklahoma Coaches All-State games held in Tulsa.
    Meranda Golbek and Sarah Szcinski, a pair of 2014 Claremore High School graduates, earned All-State honors for their athletic training careers and will join two other student trainers from Jenks and Stillwater High School on the East squad.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • FISHFRYweb.jpg Claremore QB Club holds Fish Fry Aug. 2

    The Claremore Zebra Quarterback Club will hold its annual Fish Fry fundraiser on Aug. 2 at the Claremore High School cafeteria.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Former WTAMU men's basketball coach Rick Cooper tabbed Wayland Baptist AD

    Wayland Baptist University has named former Pioneer player and coach Rick Cooper as its new director of athletics.

    July 25, 2014

  • Arkansas men's basketball season tickets on sale

    Season tickets for the 2014-15 Arkansas men’s basketball campaign are now on sale, as head coach Mike Anderson’s fourth edition of the Razorbacks and their #Fastest40 style of play return six of their top seven scorers from last year’s club that won 22 games.

    July 25, 2014

  • BIG 12: OSU's Yurcich pumped up for second season

    With the 2014 season on the brink, Oklahoma State offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich is ready for his second year at the helm after coaching a powerful offensive squad a year ago.

    July 25, 2014

  • MLB: Moss smashes grand slam, A's blast Astros 13-1

    A warm day helped Brandon Moss reach another milestone and it helped Jeff Samardzija enjoy even more run support.

    Moss hit a grand slam and the Oakland Athletics gave Samardzija more run support than he has had all season in a 13-1 victory over the Houston Astros on Thursday.

    July 25, 2014

  • MLB: Ross records 11 strikeouts, Padres rout Cubs

    Tyson Ross kept mowing down Chicago Cubs hitters, long enough for San Diego's suddenly potent offense to carry the Padres to victory for the second straight night.

    Ross struck out a career-high 11, and the light-hitting Padres broke out for a season-best nine runs in the sixth inning in a 13-3 rout of the Cubs on Thursday night.

    July 25, 2014

  • MLB: Aoki's 14th-inning single lifts Royals past Indians, 2-1

    After four hours, 23 minutes and a dozen pitchers combining to throw 397 pitches, Nori Aoki gave the Kansas City Royals a win.

    Aoki singled home Lorenzo Cain in the 14th inning to lift the Royals to a 2-1 victory over Cleveland after Indians starter Corey Kluber carried a perfect game into the seventh inning on Thursday night.

    July 25, 2014

  • MLB: White Sox topple Twins, 5-2

    An impressive start from Hector Noesi was just a couple of pitches away from being something really special.

    Noesi allowed three hits over 7 2-3 innings, and Adam Eaton had three hits and two RBIs to lead the Chicago White Sox to a 5-2 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Thursday night.

    July 25, 2014

  • MLB: Chen helps Orioles blank Mariners, 4-0

    Wie-Yen Chen threw one of his finest games in the major leagues, allowing just five hits over eight innings in Baltimore's 4-0 victory over the Seattle Mariners on Thursday night.

    July 25, 2014