Morning Ram-blings: The Martz influence

ST. LOUIS --And now we take a moment to come up for air and talk a little bit about football.

You remember football, right? The thing that happens when billionaire owners aren't adding expensive tracts of land to their stockpile and teams aren't changing defensive coordinators, that's football.

And there is a pretty big football game set for Sunday when the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks meet in the Super Bowl. By now, we have discussed the Rams' obvious ties to Seattle, but there are some connections to the Denver side of things as well.

Over at stltoday.com, Jim Thomas explored the relationship between former Rams head coach Mike Martz and current Broncos offensive coordinator Adam Gase. Gase has emerged as a rising star in the business this year, directing the most prolific offense in NFL history and helping the Broncos reach the big stage.

Gase counts Martz as one of his biggest coaching influences after the pair spent time together on Detroit and San Francisco coaching staffs. Much of what the Broncos do offensively in terms of pace, concepts and even risk-taking is clearly reminiscent of Martz's days running offenses. Martz, of course, guided a similarly explosive offense in St. Louis.

Gase told Thomas that Martz is something of a "father figure" for him and has had a huge impact on his coaching career. People can say what they want about Martz the head coach, but there is no denying his knowledge and ability to lead an offense. It clearly rubbed off on Gase.

There are plenty who question Gase's effect on the Broncos' offense, choosing instead to credit Peyton Manning, but Manning himself is quick to give credit to Gase and has called him one of the best coaches he's ever played for. At 35, Gase is just scratching the surface of his coaching career.

A Denver win in Sunday's Super Bowl surely won't erase any memories Martz had of losing in his last Super Bowl trip as a head coach, but he can at least take pride in the work done by his star pupil.


A roundup of Friday's Rams stories appearing on ESPN.com. ... In the Ram-blings, we covered the suggestions offered by the Seahawks on how the Rams can get better. ... Next, we took a look at what a strange week it's been for three former Rams coaches, including one who is now a Rams coach again. ... Of course, we delved into the story that Rams owner Stan Kroenke recently purchased 60 acres of land in the Los Angeles area, with a news story including quotes from commissioner Roger Goodell and a little video analysis to go with it. ... From there, we added the statement from Kroenke's organization confirming the purchase. ... We wrapped up a busy Friday with some predictions you didn't ask for concerning Saturday night's NFL honors and awards ceremony.

Chat: Beyond the usual array of posts, we also sat down to chat for a couple of hours on all things Rams. Here's the transcript from that session.


Speaking of predictions, we had no shortage of them, as all of our writers made the call on Sunday's Super Bowl.

Jane McManus of ESPN New York provides a full recap of Goodell's comments from his Friday news conference.

More at stltoday on the Kroenke/L.A. situation:

Columnist Bernie Miklasz warns that the sky isn't falling in his video blog.

Bryan Burwell writes that Kroenke has once again upped the ante on negotiations between the Rams and St. Louis.

Burwell also provided his video take.

This is the Post's news story on the situation.

At latimes.com, Sam Farmer has his story on Kroenke's purchase.

Farmer also provided an update with the statement confirming the purchase.