“Comfortability” with Schottenheimer
Eleven days in December. That’s all newly signed quarterback Kellen Clemens had to bite off and digest an abridged yet complex Josh McDaniels playbook before getting his first NFL start in two years.
Clemens played a good game against the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 15 considering the circumstances. He threw for 25 completions on 36 attempts for 229 yards and led the Rams on a late-game charge by throwing a 25-yard touchdown to wide receiver Danario Alexander.
But alas, the Rams came up just a bit short and lost the game 20-13. Clemens finished out the season as the Rams starter while Sam Bradford nursed his high ankle sprain and A.J. Feeley sat with a broken thumb.
Now fast forward to OTAs in June of 2012. McDaniels is now back in New England at his old post as Bill Belichick’s right-hand man and the Rams reunite Clemens with his former offensive coordinator, Brian Schottenheimer, from his days with the Jets. Clemens spent five seasons (2006-2010) with Schottenheimer in New York backing up Chad Pennington, Brett Favre and Mark Sanchez.
So how much of those experiences translate into the 2012 offensive playbook that the Rams are installing right now? I would have thought it was more similar than different but it’s not that simple. Schottenheimer has different pieces to work with here, unlike those in New York.
“I think there’s certainly some carry over offensively,” Clemens said. “Schotty has done a very good job of adapting what he does to what Sam (Bradford) does well and what’s here. He’s always done a very good job of putting the playmakers that he has in the best situation possible to make plays. He’s doing that. There are some tweaks and some different wrinkles that we’ve got going on here.”