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Barron's streak may be over


Barron's streak may be over
Alex Barron has started 47 consecutive games for the Rams - a streak that apparently will come to an end Sunday at Arizona. Because Barron was late for a team meeting Friday morning, coach Jim Haslett said he's decided to start Adam Goldberg at right tackle against the Cardinals.

The 6-foot-7, 315-pound Barron was the team's first-round draft pick (No. 19 overall) in 2005. He started the final three games of his rookie season, then all 16 in 2006 and '07, plus the first 12 this year.

Goldberg, 6-7 and 318, has started two games at left guard and two at left tackle this year, his third with the Rams and sixth in the NFL.

RAISING ARIZONA

With the Cardinals on the verge of clinching the NFC West title - a win over the Rams or a 49ers loss to the Jets would do it - the long-suffering fans in Phoenix are more than ready to celebrate.

"I think the community is very excited about that," coach Ken Whisenhunt said. "It's not something that's happened since the team has been in Arizona, and there have been a number of years where we've just been out of it at this time of the year."

Since moving from St. Louis in 1988, the Big Red have earned just one playoff berth. That came in 1998, when they posted their only winning record (9-7) in the Valley of the Sun.

The championship would be the franchise's first since Don Coryell's 1975 St . Louis Cardinals prevailed in the NFC Eastern Division and would ensure the team only its second home playoff game - the other was in 1947, when it called Chicago home.

a closer look

With Haslett seeking to glean as much as he can about his players over the final weeks of the season, rookie linebacker Chris Chamberlain is expected to get some work on defense in addition to his special-teams duties.

"I've been just kind of waiting my turn," said Chamberlain, a seventh-round draftee from the University of Tulsa. "The way the season's gone isn't what we wanted, but I think if we make the most of these last few games, it'll give us some momentum going into next year, as well as help them figure out what they've got personnel-wise and what they need to get."

qb pressure lacking

Marc Bulger wasn't sacked last week, the only time's that happened all year. Given the Cardinals' declining quarterback rush, Bulger might be able to keep his uniform clean again.

Arizona recorded 18 sacks - 12 by the front four - in its first six games, but has collected just seven since then, including two by safety Adrian Wilson on blitzes.

"We'd like to get more pressure," defensive coordinator Clancy Pendergast told reporters in Phoenix. "We've gotten close. We've gotten quick throws, we've gotten a lot of max protection."


Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: December 7, 2008

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