Balzer's Notes: Playoffs, scoring and match ups

By Howard Balzer

*The Rams' final five games are against teams with a combined record of 36-19: San Francisco (7-4), Arizona (7-4), Tampa Bay (3-8), New Orleans (9-2) and Seattle (10-1). But there is confidence the team can make a run for a playoff spot. Said defensive end Robert Quinn, "I just think guys have that eye of the tiger. We have the talent and the coaches to make that run. Guys are continuing to believe. Now let's see what happens."

*The Rams have scored 30 or more points in four games this season and all have come in the last seven games. It is the most times they have done that in a season since 2003. Their 266 points is more than they scored in the entire seasons of 2007-2009 and 2011. Last season, they scored 299 and 289 in 2010.

*Safety T.J. McDonald (shin) did not practice Wednesday and was limited Thursday. McDonald started and played 73 of the team's 79 snaps against the Bears after missing eight weeks with a broken bone in his leg. McDonald, who was limping in the locker room after the game, said it was just soreness.

*Right guard Harvey Dahl, who has missed three games after injuring his knee in the Monday night game against Seattle, returned to practice Thursday on a limited basis. The question becomes, considering how Rodger Saffold has played at the position over the last two game, what will happen when Dahl is cleared to play.

*Matchup to watch: Rams running game vs. 49ers linebackers Patrick Willis and NaVorro Bowman - Bowman was all over the field in the first game this season, when Willis was out with an injury. For the Rams to have offensive success, they have to find a way to keep those linebackers from taking over the game.

Howard Balzer will be contributing to KSDK Sports throughout the 2013 season. Howard hosts "H and Friends" Monday-Friday from 9-11 on Fox Sports 1490 The Champ. He is also a host on SiriusXM NFL radio and one of 44 selectors for the Pro Football Hall of Fame.


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