Sports Outside the Beltway

St. Louis Rams fire coach Scott Linehan

Defensive Coordinator and former New Orleans Head Coach Jim Haslett takes over on a interim basis. From AP-

ST. LOUIS – After experiencing the wild highs and lows of the Mike Martz years, the winless St. Louis Rams opted for cool, calm, reserved Scott Linehan as their next coach.

On Monday, they admitted their mistake and fired Linehan after four consecutive lopsided losses to open the season. Defensive coordinator Jim Haslett, a fiery type and polar opposite in terms of demeanor, was given the unenviable task of trying to revive a franchise that has become an NFL doormat.

The Rams have lost 17 of their last 20 games, most of them routs. But no matter how dire the situation appears, Haslett said it’ll never be as bad as in his final season as head coach of the New Orleans Saints in 2005 in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

“This is nothing,” Haslett said, “compared to that.”

Linehan, 45, was 11-25 in the third season of a four-year contract that paid him about $8 million. The Rams have been outscored 147-43 this season, and have allowed at least 30 points in seven straight games dating back to last year.

The move was made heading into the Rams’ bye week and in the early morning hours Monday, several hours after the Buffalo Bills outscored them 25-0 in the second half of a 31-14 victory.

The Rams were 3-13 in 2007 and have lost eight in a row dating to last season.

Linehan was an Asst. coach with the Miami Dolphins before getting the job in St. Louis. The Rams are pretty pathetic, no defense, no offensive line and a starting QB prone to concussions. If the Rams lose 10 games or less this year, I’d consider it a small miracle.

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