Sticking to the preseason theme of the Head Coach Jeff Fisher era, the Rams kept the game plan simple and spread playing time from the top to the bottom of the 90-man roster in their first exhibition game of the 2013 season. Still, a slow start was too much for the Rams to overcome, as they fell to the Cleveland Browns, 27-19, at FirstEnergy Stadium.
“The first preseason game is never an indication of where you’re at because there are so many different things going on,” Coach Fisher said. “We got to play a lot of players and we’ll be able to say that we saw some good things out of some young players.”
The Rams' offense struggled on the first two drives of the game, once losing possession after a running back
The first offensive unit did manage to get back on track with a 59-yard reception from quarterback
“With Givens’ speed and with the additions of (TE Jared) Cook and (WR) Tavon (Austin), hopefully we’ll be able to do that more and more this year," quarterback Sam Bradford said. "We’ve got speed at a lot of positions. Givens did a great job of getting by the corner and tracking that ball to make that catch.”
Givens feels that their final drive of the night will be more of what fans will see this season.
“Me and Sam (Bradford) decided to try and send a message, ‘This is the effort you’re going to get every Sunday,’” Givens said.
Givens finished the night with three catches for 83 yards over the course of three drives, while Bradford ended the game with five completions on eight attempts for 102 yards.
At running back,
Simplicity and fluid player rotation was key on the defensive side of the ball as well.
“We have a lot of things up our sleeve,” defensive end
The unit gave up 191 yards in the first half, but only 53 of those came on the ground. Moving forward, the defensive starters are confident they can improve against the run.
"They had one run on us, which we could have done better on,” middle linebacker
In all, 89 players of the 90-man roster saw the playing field in some capacity in this year's preseason debut.
The Rams' will play their first home preseason game at the Edward Jones Dome on Aug. 17 when the Green Bay Packers come to town. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. The next training camp practice open to the public at Rams Park will be at 3:30 p.m. on Aug. 10.