Projecting the Rams' 2010 record

The annual game-by-game predictions for NFC West teams will be rolling out on the blog throughout Thursday, beginning with a 5-11 projection on the St. Louis Rams based on these projected outcomes:

Week 1: lose vs. Cardinals

Week 2: lose at Raiders

Week 3: win vs. Redskins

Week 4: win vs. Seahawks

Week 5: win at Lions

Week 6: lose vs. Chargers

Week 7: lose at Bucs

Week 8: win vs. Panthers

Week 9: no game

Week 10: lose at 49ers

Week 11: lose vs. Falcons

Week 12: lose at Broncos

Week 13: lose at Cardinals

Week 14: lose at Saints

Week 15: win vs. Chiefs

Week 16: lose vs. 49ers

Week 17: lose at Seahawks

I've used red type to identify projected defeats that could qualify as "swing" games for hopeful fans. The opener against Arizona isn't in red type because I didn't want Ken Whisenhunt printing out this blog entry as more evidence of disrespect toward his two-time defending NFC West champs.

Last season, I couldn't find a victory on the Rams schedule until their eighth game, and that's how the first half of the season played out. This season, there might be some reaching going on with my projected Rams victory over Carolina in Week 8, but otherwise I had the Rams losing eight in a row, and I think they'll do better than that this season. They nearly beat New Orleans and Houston at home last season.

The Rams do draw a more favorable home schedule this season in terms of opposing quarterbacks. They faced Aaron Rodgers, Brett Favre, Peyton Manning, Drew Brees, Kurt Warner and Matt Schaub at the Edward Jones Dome last season. That's a brutal home schedule for a team that wasn't going to fare well on the road. The Rams need some more manageable home games this season. They still face some good quarterbacks, but the list isn't nearly as formidable as the one from 2009.

I gave the Rams a 4-4 home record as a result. That could be generous, but not if the Rams have better luck with injuries this season.