What can we expect from Sam Bradford this year? – Danny, Oregon
In 2013, before his injury, Sam Bradford was on pace to throw for 3,856 yards, 32 touchdowns and a quarterback rating of 90.9, all of which would have been career bests. For comparison, these are similar to the numbers of Joe Flacco during his 2012 super bowl year. He threw for 3,817 yards, 22 touchdowns, with a rating of 87.7. While Bradford’s stats rely on speculation and projection, the two are very similar, with Bradford’s just a little better.
Now if Bradford can remain at a similar progression this year, it isn’t outlandish to assume he can put up similar numbers. With the run game established, instead of last year’s spread offense, running backs will open up the field for Bradford as well as take a bit of pressure off him. But will that be enough to get the Rams into the playoffs?
Call me an optimist, but I see the Rams as a dark horse candidate to make the playoffs this year, and it will be Bradford and the Rams defense getting them there; very much like the 2012 Ravens when Flacco didn’t make mistakes, and the Raven’s defense smothered opponents on their way to a Super Bowl.
Not making mistakes is an often-overlooked stat from Bradford’s last year Through seven games, he only threw four interceptions. Sure, many will cite that Bradford is a check down machine, but at the end of the day, the guy is protecting the ball and giving you a shot to win.
I expect Bradford to top 4,000 yards this year (barring any injuries), as well as top his career best of 21 touchdowns with at least 25.
I see Bradford following Kurt Warner’s expectations in that, “he’s willing to take some chances with the football and say, ‘Guys, follow me.’ I’m going to carry us a little bit.” It’s time Bradford stepped up to be the quarterback he was drafted to be and push this team into the playoffs. If he doesn’t, he’ll leave the fans wondering what could have been.